NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 12 – The United States Senate has unanimously adopted a resolution in support of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s decision not to pull out of Somalia despite the September 21 Westgate terror attack.
The Senators led by Chris Coons who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Sub-committee on African Affairs lauded the African Union’s military efforts in Somalia and pledged to support them.
“The US Senate commends the Government of Kenya’s continued participation in the African Union Mission in Somalia and recognises Kenya as an important regional ally and partner of the United States,” the resolution states.
While the United States government has always considered Kenya a strategically located partner in the fight against terror, relations between the two nations have been strained since the super-power said there would be, “consequences,” for electing ICC indictees as President and Deputy President.
The September 21 attack at Westgate however seems to have caused the first world country to rethink its position and reaffirm its allegiance to Kenya.
“The horrific attack on Westgate mall was a heartbreaking reminder that terrorist organisations like Al Shabaab remain a threat to the United States and our allies in Africa and around the world,” Senator Coons said.
The US Senate therefore resolved to continue to support Kenya’s efforts against terrorism both monetarily and logistically in the gathering of intelligence.
“The US Senate reaffirms United States support for the efforts of the Government and people of Kenya to combat terrorism, counter extremism, promote tolerance, and bring the perpetrators of the Westgate mall attack to justice,” the resolution reads.
The upper-house of the American legislature has also commended the Kenya Red Cross and other first responders for the role they played during the Westgate attack and sent its condolences to those who were bereaved in the attack.
“The US Senate recognises the many heroic and selfless acts by Kenyan citizens, first responders, and the Kenya Red Cross to rescue those caught in the Westgate Mall during the attack,” it states in its resolution.
The September 21 attack on the Westgate mall was the worst terror attack in Kenya since the 1998 bombing of the American Embassy and as it did then resulted in American casualties and fatalities.