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US Reiterates Terror War Support as Kenya Commemorates Bombing of Its Embassy

He spoke shortly after laying a wreath at the August 7 Memorial Park in Nairobi, a day to the 21st commemoration of 1998 bombing of the US embassy

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Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale.|Geoffrey Isaya

BY GEOFFREY ISAYA,NAIROBI,KENYA

The United States has committed to continue supporting Kenya in enhancing maritime surveillance, countering violent extremism and fighting terrorism.

Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale, who is in the country, on Tuesday said terrorists will not manage to cause divisions among Kenyans and between the two countries.

He spoke shortly after laying a wreath at the August 7 Memorial Park in Nairobi, a day to the 21st commemoration of 1998 bombing of the US embassy, that left 213 people dead. 11 others were killed in Dar es Salam in Tanzania where a US embassy was also targeted.

“We will maintain our strong, strategic alliance with Kenya to fight terrorism threat from Al-Shabaab and any other threatening to destabilize peace here in Kenya,” he asserted in a short brief to journalists.

US, Terror War, Kenya
The United States has committed to continue supporting Kenya in enhancing maritime surveillance, countering violent extremism and fighting terrorism. Pixabay

Majority of those killed in the simultaneous attacks were locals though the terrorist’s main target were US nationals.

Investigations from the US eventually narrowed down to 18 suspects, including their leader Osama Bin Laden, who was eventually killed on May 2, 2011.

US forces have been active in launching airstrikes in Somalia where Kenyan forces under the umbrella of AMISOM are fighting Al Shabaab terrorists.

“Their immediate purpose was to kill and destroy, but they had a bigger agenda, and that was to divide Kenya and America, to undermine our friendship and the values that we hold dear, freedom, justice and peace,” Hale said.

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“They failed then, just like terrorists continue to fail in their objectives today. They did not and will not separate America and Kenya,” he stressed.

Despite the militants being extensively weakened, they have launched pockets of attacks within and out of Somalia, with Kenya paying the heaviest price partly due to a porous border between the two countries.

Some 21 years after the deadly attack, terrorists have targeted Kenya’s high-end facilities including institutions of higher learning and shopping malls, killing hundreds of people.

They have also resorted to the use of Improvised Explosive Devices, to target security officers manning boarder towns like Mandera.

US, Terror War, Kenya
Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale, who is in the country, on Tuesday said terrorists will not manage to cause divisions among Kenyans and between the two countries. Pixabay

On Saturday, 21 September 2013, Westgate shopping mall, an upscale facility in Nairobi, was attacked, leaving 67 people dead.

On 2 April 2015, Garissa University College was attacked, in one of Kenya’s worst terror attack that left 148 people, majority of them students killed.

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Three suspects were convicted and jailed over the attack that was also claimed by Al Shabaab militants.

Next Story

Uber Receives 3,045 Cases of Sexual Assault in U.S. in Year 2018

"We are partnering with RAINN, the nation's largest sexual violence organisation, to design and implement this programme," Uber added

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Uber, bengaluru
Photo shows an exterior view of the headquarters of Uber in San Francisco. (VOA)

Ride-hailing giant Uber has released its first safety review which contains thousands of sexual assault reports. The company has also revealed the changes it was making to make rides safer for its passengers and drivers.

The two-year safety review contains almost 2,936 reports pertaining to sexual assault that Uber received in 2017 and 3,045 it received in 2018.

Notably, the cab aggregator categorises sexual assaults into five subcategories, which are non-consensual kissing of a non-sexual body part, non-consenual touching of a sexual body part, attempted non-consensual sexual penetration, non-consensual kissing of a sexual body part and non-consensual sexual penetration.

In the last sub category, which is rape, the cab hailing major received 229 reports of rape in 2017 and 235 reports of rape in 2018. Throughout 2017 and 2018, the reported incidents occurred on 0.00002% of trips, according to the company.

“Confronting sexual violence requires honesty, and it’s only by shining a light on these issues that we can begin to provide clarity on something that touches every corner of society,” Tony West, Uber’s Chief Legal Officer, said in the review.

“And, most importantly, by bringing hard data to bear, we can make every trip safer for drivers and riders alike.”

Uber
Uber app. Pixabay

The ride hailing major long been under fire for its safety practices.

In its response to making rides safer for its passengers, Uber mentioned developments like its “in-app safety button”.

“We’re rolling out new features that allow riders to verify their driver with a secure PIN code, send a text message directly to 911 operators, and report safety incidents to Uber even before their trip is over,” the company said.

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In 2020, the cab aggregator will expand sexual misconduct and assault education to all the US drivers.

“We are partnering with RAINN, the nation’s largest sexual violence organisation, to design and implement this programme,” Uber added. (IANS)