Kenyans in the diaspora have been urged to exercise caution while in foreign countries to avoid being caught on the wrong side of the law.
Speaking after the unveiling of the Kenyan Foreign Policy at the Stanley Hotel in Nairobi on Thursday, Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Monica Juma revealed that about 1,300 Kenyans are serving jail terms in foreign countries across the world.
"When you go out there, please understand the jurisdictions you are in and respect the law. Do not go there and do things we do here if they are not allowed there,” Dr Juma advised Kenyans in abroad.
Of the 1,300, 79 are being detained in Tanzania, 47 in Uganda and 15 in Ethiopia.
She noted: “There is nothing unusual really about Kenyans being in foreign jails. We have negotiated a number of extradition treaties, but these take time.”
The CS said the government is committed to securing every Kenyan citizen whenever they are and ensure they are treated humanely by being given access to legal and consular services.
“We are committed to secure all Kenyans whenever they are in the world and we will continue developing and negotiating frameworks to protect them wherever they are,” said Juma.
"If any Kenyan is arrested, and/or jailed before we are informed, we will and have protested because it is against international law,” she said.
The director of Diaspora and Consular Services in the ministry Washington Oloo, said nearly half of the 1300 are serving life imprisonment abroad.
“Our policy is not to interfere with the legal process of a sovereign nation but we try as much as possible to ensure that they have consular support, and retain the right to visitation,” said Mr Oloo.