Kenya Airways (KQ) has suspended all flights to Guangzhou in China, an alleged host city for the deadly coronavirus that has gripped millions of people with fear across the globe.
According to the national carrier, the suspension is effective January 30, until further notice but flights to and from Bangkok will remain operational.
“We have temporarily suspended all flights to and from Guangzhou starting 31st January 2020, until further notice. We, however, clarify that our service between Nairobi and Bangkok remains operational.” Said KQ in a statement.
The Distance from Bangkok to Guangzhou is 1,700 mm.
KQ has bowed to pressure days after Kenyan ambassador to China Sarah Serem called on the airline to suspend its flights.
On January 29, KQ had maintained the stand that it would not suspend its flights.
“Cancellation of the flights is on the table but we are monitoring and we will take the action as soon as there’s imminent danger,” the airline’s acting Chief Executive Officer Allan Kilavuka said.
Infections up tenfold in one week, to nearly 10,000
The United States issued a red alert on Thursday its strongest warning, urging Americans to avoid travel to China.
The Virus has claimed more than 200 lives so far, with more than 9,800 infections confirmed globally. No death has been reported outside China.
The US State Department on Thursday issued a travel advisory telling Americans not to travel to China because of the public health threat posed by the dangerous new coronavirus.
In Kenya, the Ministry of Health chaired by Cabinet Secretary Sicily Kariuki has sent result samples on the suspected Coronavirus case to South Africa for further validation.
The outcome of the results will determine the next cause of action to be taken.
This is the first suspected case of coronavirus in Kenya that emanated from a Kenyan who flew in from China on Tuesday.