UK agrees to expand defence and security cooperation with Kenya

30 September 2015 (Last Updated September 30th, 2015 18:30)

The UK and Kenyan governments have signed an agreement to expand cooperation on defence and security issues at the UN General Assembly meeting in New York, US.

ministers

The UK and Kenyan governments have signed an agreement to expand cooperation on defence and security issues at the UN General Assembly meeting in New York, US.

Subject to final ratification in both Parliaments, the new defence cooperation agreement is expected to significantly enhance the defence relationship, enabling Britain to provide additional support to Kenya on maritime security, and continue military training in the African country.

The new agreement, which was signed by the UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond and Kenyan Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed, will also lead to improved military capabilities for both sides, while allowing for concurrent jurisdiction, recognising that the laws of both countries apply to visiting forces.

Hammond said: "Today we have held discussions, which will help us tackle joint security challenges, benefitting both the UK and Kenya.

"Given the number and diversity of security threats faced by peaceful societies in the 21st century, close cooperation between partner nations is more necessary than ever before."

Approximately 10,000 UK soldiers train on Kenyan soil every year in Laikipia and Samburu, as part of an agreement signed between the two countries five years ago, as reported by Daily Nation.

"We have held discussions, which will help us tackle joint security challenges, benefitting both the UK and Kenya."

In addition to defence cooperation, the two ministers also signed a new security compact underlining the nation's resolve to tackle the shared threat of terrorism.

The compact is said to build-upon and strengthen current security cooperation across areas, such as countering violent extremism, border and aviation security, as well as criminal justice. It also includes a new annual senior-level strategic dialogue, to review progress against objectives.

Areas of enhanced cooperation will see the UK and Kenya join forces to establish a new centre to provide technical training to counter improvised explosive devices.

The agreement is said to highlight the importance of working with communities to address the underlying causes of conflict, and development of an integrated cross-government approach to tackling insecurity.


Image: UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond and Kenyan Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed signed an agreement to expand defence cooperation between the two countries. Photo: courtesy of British High Commission Nairobi / © Crown copyright.