Kenya and Tanzania Foreign Ministers have in a phone interview agreed to solve the air travel dospute in three days.
Tanzania’s January Makamba said in tweet on Monday, “I spoke to my Kenyan colleague @MusaliaMudavadi . We agree that restrictions of air travel between our countries and from any of our country to a third country shouldn’t stand. With relevant authorities, we’ve resolved to settle this issue, per existing agreements, within 3 days”.
Kenya’s Musalia Mudavadi responded saying they had agreed that the respective Civil Aviation Authorities will work together to have the matter resolved amicably within the next three days.
“There should therefore be no cause for alarm,” Mudavadi said on X.
Tanzania blocked Kenya Airways passenger flights from operating the Nairobi-Dar es Salaam route as retaliation to Nairobi refusing all cargo flights operations by Air Tanzania Company Limited.
In a statement signed by Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority Director General Hamza Johari, Dar es Salaam had said there will be no passenger flights by Kenya airways from Nairobi from January 22, 2024.
“Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority on behalf of the aeronautical authorities of the United Republic of Tanzania has decided to rescind the approvals for Kenya Airways (KQ) to operate passenger flights between Nairobi and Dar es Salaam under Third and Forth Freedom Traffic Rights with effect from 22 January 2024,” the statement read in part.
Dar es Salaam added that the move is to reciprocate the decision by Kenya refuse the Tanzanian request for all-cargo flight operations by Air Tanzania Company Limited under Fifth Freedom Traffic Rights between Nairobi and Third countries, contrary to Section 4 of the MoU on Air Services, between Tanzania and Kenya signed on November 24, 2016 in Nairobi.
Kenya Airways in a position statement said it was aware of the public notice issued by the Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority on15th January 2024,
“Kenya Airways is engaging the Civil Aviation Authorities and relevant government agencies in Kenya and Tanzania to find a solution that will ensure there are no flight disruptions between Nairobi and Dar es Salaam,” it said.
The rift between Kenya and Tanzania adds to the growing cases of infighting within the East African Community.