Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi are the only countries in the six-nation East African Community (EAC) bloc that have been spared the kidnapping risk indicator in assessing the safety of US travellers.
The Department of State, which is in charge of foreign affairs, said Tuesday that the new assessment measure was been informed by cases of “kidnapping and hostage taking by criminal and terrorist actors around the world”.
Some 35 countries including Kenya have been slapped with updated advisories that include the risk of kidnapping.
US was the leading source of foreign tourists to Kenya last year when earnings from the sector jumped 37 percent to Sh157 billion — which is the biggest increase in more than a decade.
“The new “K” indicator is part of our ongoing commitment to provide clear and comprehensive travel safety information to US citizens so they can make informed travel decisions,” the US foreign office said in a statement.
The world’s largest economy periodically issues country-specific caution to its travelling citizens based on assessment of risk factors such as crime, terrorism, civil unrest, natural disasters and health.
Nearly half of the affected countries (16 in total) where the US citizens will get regular reports on the risk of being abducted are in Africa.
The new risk indicator come a day after President Donald Trump called on Uganda to find kidnappers of a US tourist and her Ugandan driver released last weekend by their abductors after a five-day ordeal.
Kenya is yet to find an Italian charity worker, Ms Silvia Constanca Romano, who was abducted in Kilifi County on November 20, 2018.