UN opens Nairobi office to public

The United Nations Office in Nairobi (UNON) is opening to the public to generate awareness of the global organisation's function and activities.

The “Karibu UNON! It's Your World!" initiative will see visitors welcomed to the UN Visitor Services Department where they will learn about the UN's role in disaster relief, counter-terrorism, disarmament and non-proliferation of arms.

Visitor groups comprise a minimum of five people, bookings must be made at least a week in advance and tours take place from Monday to Friday.

The tour includes the memorial garden established in homage to the victims of the 1998 US embassy bombings in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam in Tanzania. The terrorist attacks, which were linked to al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden, resulted in approximately 212 casualties in Nairobi and at least 11 in Dar es Salaam.

There are 24 UN agencies and programmes – collectively known as UNON – at the UN complex in the high-security Gigiri district.

The tours have been launched against a backdrop of increased security threats which have led to other international organisations in Africa limiting access to their premises.