A big fire broke out early this morning in Nairobi's international airport, destroying the main passenger arrivals hall and forcing a halt to all inbound and outbound flights as Kenyan authorities were slow to contain the blaze, according to news reports from the nation's capital.
The Nairobi airport is the busiest in East Africa and its closure is likely to affect flights throughout the region
, according to the Associated Press
. Flights are being rerouted to Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania and Entebe, Uganda, and the Kenyan cities of Mombasa, Eldoret and Kisumu.
Passengers at the airport characterized the response of emergency response teams as slow and chaotic.
The fire appears to have been brought under control after several hours.
Nairobi is an important air cargo hub for Africa. - Eric Kulisch