Thursday, August 8, 2013

#CODED-ish News: Fire guts Kenya airport

10:06 PM

Firefighters and stranded passengers at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Nairobi, Kenya...on Wednesday.
A fire engulfed Kenya’s main airport on Wednesday, forcing the suspension of international passenger flights and choking a vital travel gateway to east Africa.

The country’s anti-terror police boss said he did not believe that there was a terror link to the fire even though it coincided with the 15th anniversary of a twin attack by Islamist militants on the United States embassy in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam, the commercial capital of neighboring Tanzania.


Authorities said they will on Thursday begin preparing the airport’s domestic terminal, which escaped the blaze, for handling international flights, using tents to create extra space. Domestic flights had resumed by Wednesday evening, and outward-bound cargo flights were due to resume hours later.

The raging blaze engulfed the terminal buildings and lit up the early morning sky, sending billowing clouds of black smoke rising in a plume that was visible from miles away.

The intense heat repeatedly drove back firefighters who battled for five hours to put out the fire, the worst on record at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, east Africa’s busiest.

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