[bc-gnso] FW: [council] FW: [REGYCON] FW: March 2009 Meeting in Kenya - Warnings

Mike Rodenbaugh icann at rodenbaugh.com
Thu Dec 10 00:12:30 UTC 2009

Members considering travel to Kenya may like to note the following
information.  I will pass along any other info I get.


Mike Rodenbaugh


548 Market Street

San Francisco, CA  94104

=http://rodenbaugh.com/contact> (415) 738-8087

 <http://rodenbaugh.com/> http://rodenbaugh.com

From: owner-council at gnso.icann.org [mailto:owner-council at gnso.icann.org] On
Behalf Of Gomes, Chuck
Sent: Wednesday, December 09, 2009 11:28 AM
To: GNSO Council 
Subject: [council] FW: [REGYCON] FW: March 2009 Meeting in Kenya - Warnings


The issues of safety and security in Nairobi were discussed today in the
RySG meeting.  As a result, Jeff Neuman as Vice Chair of the RySG sent the
following message to Craig Schwartz, Chief Registry Liaison.  I am sending
this to the full Council because I am sure that all of us considering
attending the meetings in Kenya have similar concerns and like to receive
the type of information that the RySG has requested.





From: Neuman, Jeff 
Sent: Wednesday, December 09, 2009 1:39 PM
To: Craig Schwartz
Cc: doug.brent at icann.org; Kurt Pritz; greg.rattray at icann.org; Neuman, Jeff
Subject: March 2009 Meeting in Kenya - Warnings




On the RySG call this morning, a number of members of the RySG expressed
significant concerns about the meeting in Kenya and on what security
measures are being taken by ICANN to protect the attendees.  This includes
not only at the Venue site, but also transportation to and from the airport
to the hotels as well as travel between the hotels and the venue site (since
they are not in the same location).   We note that a number of countries
including the United States, Australia, Germany, the UK, Canada and New
Zealand have all issues incredibly strong warnings against travel to Kenya.
See some excerpts we have provided below.  We also understand that ICANN
intends on spending a considerable amount of money on security measures, but
to date, we do not know what those are and whether those protections will be
made available to the attendees other than the ICANN Board and staff.  A
number of registries have decided to either not attend or send a significant
lesser number of representatives to the meeting as a result of the travel
warnings simply because they do not have the resources to spend on the
security measures that may be required.


We would appreciate a prompt response on this as we are all in the process
of making our decisions on whether to attend the meeting and making the
appropriate accommodations.






United States

The U.S. Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the risks of travel to
Kenya.  American citizens in Kenya and those considering travel to Kenya
should evaluate their personal security situation in light of continuing
threats from terrorism and the high rate of violent crime.


Violent and sometimes fatal criminal attacks, including armed carjackings
and home invasions/burglaries, can occur at any time and in any location,
particularly in Nairobi.  As recently as June 2008, U.S. Embassy personnel
were victims of carjackings.  In the short-term, the continued displacement
of thousands of people by the recent civil unrest combined with endemic
poverty and the availability of weapons could result in an increase in
crime, both petty and violent.  Kenyan authorities have limited capacity to
deter or investigate such acts or prosecute perpetrators. American citizens
in Kenya should be extremely vigilant with regard to their personal
security, particularly in public places frequented by foreigners such as
clubs, hotels, resorts, upscale shopping centers, restaurants, and places of



*CRIME:* There is a high rate of crime in all regions of Kenya, particularly
Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, and at coastal beach resorts. 

There are regular reports of attacks against tourists by groups of armed
assailants. Pickpockets and thieves carry out "snatch and run" crimes on
city streets and near crowds. Visitors have found it safer not to carry
valuables, but rather to store them in hotel safety deposit boxes or safe
rooms. However, there have been reports of safes being stolen from hotel
rooms and hotel desk staff being forced to open safes. Walking alone or at
night, especially in downtown areas, public parks, along footpaths, on
beaches, and in poorly lit areas, is dangerous and discouraged.


Violent criminal attacks, including armed carjacking and home
invasions/burglary, can occur at any time and in any location, and are
becoming increasingly frequent, brazen, vicious, and often fatal. In early
2007, two American citizens were killed and one critically injured in two
separate carjacking incidents. Nairobi averages about ten vehicle hijackings
per day and Kenyan authorities have limited capacity to deter and
investigate such acts. Matatus (public transportation) tend to be targeted
since they carry up to 14 passengers.


Although these attacks are often violent, victims are generally not injured
if they do not resist. There is also a high incidence of residential
break-ins and occupants should take additional security measures to protect
their property. Thieves and con artists have been known to impersonate
police officers, thus Americans are strongly encouraged to ask for
identification if approached by individuals identifying themselves as police
officials, uniformed or not.


Thieves routinely snatch jewelry and other objects from open vehicle windows
while motorists are either stopped at traffic lights or in heavy traffic.
Vehicle windows should be up and doors locked regardless of the time of day
or weather. Thieves on matatus, buses and trains may steal valuables from
inattentive passengers. Americans should guard their backpacks or hand
luggage and ensure these items are not left unattended. Purchasing items
from street vendors is strongly discouraged - visitors should only use
reputable stores or businesses. Many scams, perpetrated against unsuspecting
tourists, are prevalent in and around the city of Nairobi. Many of these
involve people impersonating police officers and using fake police ID badges
and other credentials. 

Nevertheless, police checkpoints are common in Kenya and all vehicles are
required to stop if directed to do so.

Highway banditry is common in much of North Eastern Province, Eastern
Province, the northern part of Coast Province, and the northern part of the
Rift Valley Province. These areas are remote and sparsely populated. 


Incidents also occur occasionally on Kenya's main highways, particularly
after dark. Due to increased bandit activity, air travel is the recommended
means of transportation when visiting any of the coastal resorts north of
Malindi. Travelers to North Eastern Kenya and the North Rift Valley Region
should travel with the police escorts or convoys organized by the government
of Kenya.


There has been an increase in armed banditry in or near many of Kenya's
national parks and game reserves, particularly the Samburu, Leshaba, and
Masai Mara game reserves. In response, the Kenya Wildlife Service and police
have taken some steps to strengthen security in the affected areas, but the
problem has not been eliminated. Travelers who do not use the services of
reputable travel firms or knowledgeable guides or drivers are especially at
risk. Safaris are best undertaken with a minimum of two vehicles so that
there is a backup in case of mechanical failure or other emergency. Solo
camping is always risky.








The level of crime in Nairobi is high. Violent crime against Westerners,
including armed carjacking, kidnapping for ransom and home invasions, occurs
frequently and can be brazen and brutal. There have been fatalities.
Anecdotal evidence suggests that foreigners are increasingly being targeted
in homes, tourist areas and while travelling by road.


You should avoid walking or travelling after dark or on isolated roads,
especially in downtown areas, public parks, along footpaths or on beaches,
and remain vigilant during daylight hours.


Muggings and burglaries are common, particularly after dark. Jewellery and
bag-snatching from open vehicle windows frequently occur while motorists are
either stopped at traffic lights or in heavy traffic. When driving, you
should ensure that windows are up, doors are locked and valuables are out of


  * We advise you to exercise a high degree of caution in Kenya at

    this time due to the high risk of terrorist attack, civil unrest

    and high crime levels.

  * We are receiving an increasing number of reports that terrorists

    may be planning attacks against a range of targets in Kenya,

    including Kenyan or Western interests. Western embassies, UN

    premises, shopping areas frequented by Westerners, hotels, tourist

    resorts, safari lodges and other places frequented by foreigners

    may be particular targets. In planning your activities, you should

    avoid the kinds of places known to be terrorist targets.

  * Foreign embassies, hotels and commercial airlines in Kenya have

    been targeted by terrorists in the past and remain potential

    targets. See Safety and Security: Terrorism


    for details.




Canadians are advised to exercise a high degree of caution because of the
potential of terrorist actions against Western interests throughout Kenya.
Attacks could occur at any time and could target areas frequented by
expatriates and foreign travellers. Canadians should be aware that the U.S.
embassies in Kenya and Tanzania were bombed simultaneously in 1998.


The potential for carjackings and robberies of tourists travelling to and
from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) and Nairobi, particularly at
night, continues to be of concern. Travellers arriving at JKIA should only
use transportation organized by reputable tour companies or well-marked
taxis. Currency should not be exchanged in the public areas of the airport.
Checked luggage may be pilfered at the airport. Travellers should store
their valuables in securely locked hand luggage and suitcases.



Nairobi and its surrounding regions have experienced an increase in violent
incidents in recent months. There has been a particularly high number of
incidents involving the Mungiki criminal gang and police forces, following
the death of several high-level members of the Mungiki sect in April 2008.
Although the majority of Mungiki-related incidents have been located in and
around Nairobi, this sect has spread its activities to other parts of the
country. In April 2009, fighting erupted between residents of the town of
Karatina in Central province and members of this gang. More than 20 people
were reportedly killed and several others injured. In recent months, foreign
nationals have been the victims of daytime carjackings and kidnappings in
neighbourhoods normally deemed safe during daylight hours. Travellers should
be vigilant and avoid heavily populated areas of major cities to minimize
the risk of being caught up in violent clashes. In Nairobi, travellers
should particularly avoid the Kibera, Mathare, Kasirani, and Eastleigh



New Zealand

There is high risk to your security throughout Kenya and we advise against
all tourist and other non-essential travel due to the threat from terrorism,
civil unrest and violent crime.

Violent crime including car-jacking, home invasion and armed robbery is
increasing. These attacks can occur anywhere at anytime and can be fatal.
New Zealanders are advised to be extremely security conscious at all times
and avoid travelling at night.


There is a high threat from terrorism in Kenya. Previous terrorist attacks
in Kenya have been against visibly Western targets. Particular care should
be taken in public and commercial areas known to be frequented by foreigners
including airports, hotels, bars, restaurants, clubs, tourist areas,
embassies, shopping areas, outdoor recreation events and expatriate housing



*There is a high threat from terrorism in Kenya. Attacks could be
indiscriminate, including in places frequented by expatriates and foreign
travelers. Previous attacks have included a bomb attack on a hotel, which
resulted in significant loss of life, and an unsuccessful attempt to bring
down a civilian airliner in Mombasa, both in November 2002.




There is a high threat from terrorism in Kenya. Attacks could be
indiscriminate, including in places frequented by expatriates and foreign
travelers. While there have not been any terrorist attacks in Kenya since
2002, we know that Al-Qaeda has the potential to carry out attacks against
Western targets. The leadership of Al-Shabaab, a Somalia based Islamist
insurgency group, have publicly threatened to attack Kenya should the Kenyan
government provide support to the Somali Transitional Federal Government



Muggings and armed attacks by gangs can occur at any time, particularly in
Nairobi and Mombasa.

Do not carry credit cards or cash cards unless you must:  people have been
forced by thieves to withdraw cash. Beware of thieves posing as police
officers; always ask to see identification.



Jeffrey J. Neuman 
Neustar, Inc. / Vice President, Law & Policy
46000 Center Oak Plaza Sterling, VA 20166
Office: +1.571.434.5772  Mobile: +1.202.549.5079  Fax: +1.703.738.7965 /
<mailto:jeff.neuman at neustar.biz> jeff.neuman at neustar.biz  /
<http://www.neustar.biz/> www.neustar.biz      


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