The Kenyan government today eased the dusk-to-dawn curfew imposed after Sunday's abortive coup as much of the capital returned to normal.
Most government offices were back in operation. Officials carried out attendance checks to prevent absenteeism. More businesses reopened, traffic returned to its normal slow pattern and tourists were in evidence.
However, many stores in the heavily looted Indian business area remained barred. Their broken windows were a grim reminder of the brief but costly violence unleashed in the unsuccessful Air Force attempt to overthrow the government of President Daniel arap Moi.
The curfew in Nairobi and Nanyuki in the north was reduced to eight hours--from 9 p.m. until 5 a.m., replacing the 6 p.m.-to-7 a.m. ban that had been in operation for the last five days. The longer curfew had hampered industry and transport.
Vice President Mwai Kibaki announced that Moi has summoned the Parliament to a special session. It had recessed last week for two months.
For the first time since Sunday, there were no reports today of clashes in the downtown area between rebels and security forces. It is believed that well over 2,000 people have been arrested, half of them looters. Some looters began appearing in court and several who pleaded guilty were sentenced to 18 months in prison.
There were reports that most of the 3,000 men in the Air Force--which is listed as having 20 combat aircraft--are detained pending investigation of the coup. The government announced that all Kenyan air bases are now under control of the Army and there was no reason to fear an attack by rebels still at large.