ICANN Nairobi Meeting Subject of Security Threat

ICANN has advised that is has received an unclassified report from the United States’ Department of State related to the Kenyatta International Conference Center, the venue for their upcoming meeting.The advice from the US State Department says that “individuals affiliated with al-Shabaab al-Islamiya were planning suicide bombing attacks on the US Embassy and Kenyan International Conference Center in Nairobi, Kenya. The individuals were targeting the KICC because it was deemed the largest and oldest building associated with the Kenyan government.”The advice continues that the State Department has “no additional information regarding the possible individuals involved in the plot, timing, or method of the attack.”Despite the security threat, Sammy Buruchara, Chairman of the ICANN 2010 Local Steering Committee in Nairobi has put out a statement stating they are committed to ensuring the safety of participants at the meeting in conjunction with Nairobi’s security organs including the National Security Intelligence Service (NSIS) and Kenya Anti-Terrorism Police.The statement says:
“In relation with the Security threat by Al Shabaab to US Embassy and KICC, I wish to on behalf of ICANN 2010 Local Organizing committee and on behalf of the relevant Kenya Government Security Agencies state the following:The Kenya Government is aware of the Security Threat by Al Shabaab on KICC and on the United States Embassy in Nairobi. Our security organs that include National Security Intelligence Service (NSIS) and Kenya Anti-Terrorism Police have been alerted and will make appropriate security responses to deal with this threat. Through their network of security agents, they have made contingency plans to thwart any possible terrorist plot that will target Nairobi City, including KICC and all the Hotels in which delegates will be hosted, and the US Embassy.I wish to assure ICANN Community that the Kenya Government is committed to ensure your safety during the ICANN event and will take necessary security measures to guarantee the safety of all participants during the Conference.”In a further statement, ICANN’s Doug Brent says that:
“ICANN staff have also reached out to on-the-ground security experts to better interpret the information provided. As has been explained to us, general threats of this kind are common; what made this particular communication worthy of mention is that it has identified a specific venue that has not generally been the target of previous threats. After over-night outreach to various governments and agencies in the region, we have received no information from other sources confirming or denying the threat to the specific venue.”For more information and to keep up to date on the security threat, see the ICANN Nairobi meeting website at nbo.icann.org

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