Africa

Nairobi airport fire: Police questioned over looting

  • 11 August 2013
  • From the section Africa
Aftermath of fire at Nairobi airport, 8 August
The cause of the fire has not yet been determined

Police officers and airport workers are being questioned over suspected acts of looting during this week's fire at an airport in Kenya's capital, Nairobi.

Investigators said some of the acts had been caught on security cameras. Items stolen included cash and alcohol.

The cause of Wednesday's fire at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) has not yet been determined.

President Uhuru Kenyatta has ruled out terrorism but warned those responsible would be punished.

Seven police officers, including an inspector, are being questioned over suspected looting.

One investigator told the AFP news agency: "It is embarrassing because some of them concentrated on looting instead of raising alarms.

"We're questioning all of them. Police officers, immigration staff, civilians who work in other areas and even taxi drivers."

The suspects could appear in court on Monday, Kenya's Daily Nation newspaper reported.

The fire took about four hours to bring under control, by which time the arrivals hall had been gutted.

The airport is a regional hub, serving more than 16,000 passengers daily, and its closure caused widespread disruption.

President Kenyatta said on Friday: "There was no element of terror, no evidence of explosions or improvised explosive devices in this incident," adding that "those responsible for negligence will have to be punished".

Operations have now resumed at the airport, with both domestic and international flights running.

A fierce fire at Nairobi's Jomo Kenyatta International Airport on 7 August destroyed the arrivals hall
The cause of the fire, which blazed out of control for several hours, has not yet been determined
It is believed to have started in the immigration zone
It turned into a huge blaze that spread to the arrivals area
The interior of the building was gutted in places
Air travellers queued to catch their flights the day after the fire
The fire sent up plumes of black smoke that could be seen from elsewhere in the capital, Nairobi

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