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

Phil Corwin pcorwin at butera-andrews.com
Thu Dec 10 00:50:18 UTC 2009

In addition to the very serious security concerns, I just read a news report in the past week that there is a major cholera outbreak in Kenya.

Philip S. Corwin
Butera & Andrews
1301 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Suite 500
Washington, DC 20004

202-347-6875 (office)

202-347-6876 (fax)

202-255-6172 (cell)

"Luck is the residue of design." -- Branch Rickey

From: owner-bc-gnso at icann.org [mailto:owner-bc-gnso at icann.org] On Behalf Of Mike Rodenbaugh
Sent: Wednesday, December 09, 2009 7:13 PM
To: 'bc - GNSO list'
Subject: [bc-gnso] FW: [council] FW: [REGYCON] FW: March 2009 Meeting in Kenya - Warnings

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
(415) 738-8087<http://service.ringcentral.com/ringme/callback.asp?mbid=57178438,0,&referer=http://rodenbaugh.com/contact>
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 worship.

*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 sight.

  * 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 neighbourhoods.

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 areas.


*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 (TFG).

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 / jeff.neuman at neustar.biz<mailto:jeff.neuman at neustar.biz>  / www.neustar.biz<http://www.neustar.biz/>
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