Tourism Board condoles with families of Dusit attack victims

Messages of hope and condolences continued to be sent following the deadly attack at the luxurious Dusit Hotel in Nairobi.

The African Tourism Board (ATB), chairman Mr Juergen T. Steinmetz, in a statement extended his sympathy to the families of the victims, strongly condemning the terror attack that occurred on Tuesday at the luxury Dusit Hotel in Nairobi, Kenya.

“This is not only an attack on a luxury hotel in Nairobi, but an attempt to hurt the hard-working people and the tourism industry in Kenya. It’s an attack on Africa Tourism. It’s a day when the civilized world should stand together and show resilience,'' Steinmetz said.

And Chairman of the Coast Working Group, Mr Hasnain Noorani yesterday while condoling with families of those who lost their lives during the attack said that terrorism is a global problem and not just a Kenyan issue.

''We need to be extremely proud of our security forces and how they managed to contain the situation so far,'' Noorani who is also Managing Director of the Pride Inn Group of Hotels said.

He added that Kenyan security forces who responded swiftly to the attacks have shown the criminals that the Kenya is a strong nation.

''We need the world to stand with Kenya in solidarity at this time as we make the activities of the criminals worthless by ensuring that all travel plans to Kenya remain as planned,'' Noorani said.

On its part, Mombasa based civil society group, Haki Africa said that it stands firmly with the rest of the country and condemned the heinous and cowardly attack in Nairobi.

''Such attacks have no place in modern society and out rightly violate rights of innocent people. As a human rights organisation, we recognise terrorism as one of the worst  forms of human rights violation as it is normally directed at innocent persons who have no comprehension of terrorists demands  or wishes,'' Mr Hussein Khalid , Executive Director, Haki Africa stated.

ATB added that this kind of attack can happen anywhere.

''Unfortunately, no country or city in the world can be 100% safe. Most attacks have happened in Europe and North America. One day it’s Boston, New York, or Las Vegas, the next day it’s Berlin, Paris, or Nice,'' Steinmetz said.

 He said that Kenya has shown resilience over the years and it has also shown leadership by becoming an example to the world when it comes to demonstrating not only concern for tourism safety, but even more important – implementation.

“Remember the African Hotel Investment and Eco Tourism in 2013? I personally was impressed about safety measures in place in Nairobi that many other cities can only strive to achieve,'' he said.

“Nairobi is not alone with the crime committed by a suicide bomber today. It joins Paris and other metropolis where dangerous people commit devastating crimes. Luckily, with billions of tourists traveling every day, Kenya and all countries with such incidents usually remain very safe places. The number of victims at the Dusit Hotel is relatively low compared to some of the more major incidents in the US and Europe. But the loss of even one life is tragic.

“We hope our African members stand united as one today. The African Tourism Board is all about Africa coming together as one destination. Now is not the time to panic or issue travel advisories. It is time to showcase the beautiful side of travel and tourism in Kenya and the rest of Africa,” Steinmetz said

“Security services are to be congratulated for rescuing many people from inside the Dusit Hotel complex over the course of many hours,'' he said further.

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