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Increase in travel warnings for Americans and their allies

The US and its allies are facing an unprecedented number of warnings of attacks by terror groups and countries that sponsor terrorism.

A quick review of travel advisories makes the point perfectly clear.

This from the US State Department:

Current Travel Warnings
Travel Warnings are issued when the State Department recommends that Americans avoid a certain country. The countries listed below are currently on that list. In addition to this list, the State Department issues Consular Information Sheets for every country of the world with information on such matters as the health conditions, crime, unusual currency or entry requirements, any areas of instability, and the location of the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate in the subject country.

Iraq – 10/31/02
Central African Republic – 10/31/02
Indonesia – 10/19/02
Cote d’Ivoire – 10/18/02
Libya – 10/7/02
Somalia – 8/23/02
Angola – 8/23/02
Pakistan – 8/12/02
Burundi – 8/9/02
Nigeria – 8/8/02
Israel, the West Bank and Gaza – 8/2/02
Sudan – 7/9/02
Afghanistan – 7/3/02
Colombia – 7/3/02
Congo-Kinshasa – 7/1/02
Pakistan – 6/26/02
Bosnia & Herzegovina – 6/4/02
Macedonia (Former Yugoslav Republic of) – 5/21/02
Liberia – 5/21/02
Lebanon – 4/29/02
Yemen – 3/18/02
Iran – 1/30/02
Algeria – 12/11/01
Tajikistan – 9/26/01

And the following from the United Kingdom’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office:

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has changed the travel advice for Yemen, to advise against non-essential travel.

It has also changed the travel advice for other countries in the Gulf region – Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.

‘Given the heightened tension in the Middle East region and the increased threat from global terrorism, UK nationals in [Bahrain/ Kuwait/Oman/Qatar/Saudi Arabia/United Arab Emirates and Yemen] should be vigilant particularly in public places frequented by foreigners such as hotels, restaurants and shopping malls’.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office travel advice is kept under constant review and this change is based on assessment of the latest information available.

This advice is in addition to the existing world-wide warning that: ‘UK nationals world-wide should be aware of the risk of indiscriminate attacks on civilian targets in public places, including tourist sites.’
The Travel Advice Unit advises against all travel to the following:
Central African Republic
Ivory Coast
Afghanistan (western and southern districts of Kabul City and the remainder of the country)
Albania (North East Border areas between Albania & Kosovo)
Azerbaijan (western region of Nagorno-Karabakh and the militarily occupied area surrounding it)
Chad (the Borkou-Ennedi-Tibesti provinces only)
Colombia (all Provinces of Choco, Putumayo, Meta and Caqueta and to rural areas of Antioquia, Cauca, Narino and Norte de Santander Provinces only)
Comoros (Anjouan only)
Congo (Outside Brazzaville and Pointe Noire)
Congo (Democratic Republic) (Outside Kinshasa and the government-controlled town of Lubumbashi)
Ecuador (northern border areas with Colombia, particularly Sucumbios, Orellana and Napo Provinces)
Eritrea (border areas with Ethiopia)
Ethiopia (border areas of Tigray & Afar only)
Guinea (border region with Liberia & Sierra Leone only)
India (Jammu and Kashmir, areas of Gujarat, Rajasthan and Punjab close to the border, and areas of Ladakh close to the Line of Control)
Israel and the Occupied Territories (only West Bank and Gaza and Israel/ Lebanon and Israel/ Gaza border areas)
Kyrgyzstan (South & west of Osh and the Ferghana Valley Region only)
Namibia (immediate border areas with Angola only)
Philippines (Zamboanga Peninsula & Islands south west of Mindanao only)
Russian Federation (Chechen Republic & north Caucasus region only)
Sri Lanka (north & east only)
Sudan (Eritrean border/ Kassala area)
Uganda (Gulu (inc. Murchison Falls Nat. Pk.), Kitgum, Adjumani, Apac & Lira Districts, the Karamoja region of Eastern Uganda (Kotido, Moroto & Nakapiripiri Districts), Katakwi District & Bundibugyo District inc. Semliki Nat. Pk. (not the Game Reserve) only)
Venezuela (border areas especially with Colombia)

Unless on essential business, the Travel Advice Unite advises against travel to:
East Timor (Democratic Republic of)
Sierra Leone
Afghanistan Kabul City (apart from southern and western districts where we advise against all travel)
Albania (north east)
Azerbaijan (Zagatala area only)
Congo (Brazzaville and Pointe Noire only)
Ecuador (the highland areas surrounding Quito only)
Papua New Guinea Southern Highland Province and Enga Province
Philippines (areas of Mindanao south or west of Davoa City only)
Rwanda (rural areas in Cyangugu Province bordering Burundi (Gishoma, Dugarama, Kibangiro, Bugumya, Gasumo & Bweyeye)only)
Solomon Islands (Guadalcanal and Malaita)
Sudan (southern Sudan, except for those engaged in relief work)
Yugoslavia (Federal Republic of) (Kosovo only)

This from the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade:

This Advice is current for Monday 11 November 2002 EDT
The Advice was issued on Monday 11 November 2002 09:22:50 EDT
This advice has been reviewed and reissued with no substantive change to the information or advice provided.
Australians in France are advised to be especially alert to their own security. Australians should exercise caution, particularly in larger cities and tourist areas.
Safety and Security
In view of the ongoing risk of terrorist attacks, Australians in France are advised to be especially alert to their own security.
This advice should be read in conjunction with our General Advice to Australian Travellers at http://www.dfat.gov.au/zw-cgi/view/Advice/General.
Australians in France should exercise caution, particularly in larger cities and tourist areas.
The incidents of street crime (bag snatching, pickpocketing and petty theft) have markedly increased, especially in larger cities such as Paris, Marseilles and Nice. These incidents are increasingly accompanied by acts of violence. Public transport and tourist areas are all prime locations for pickpockets, who frequently work in gangs, using a variety of methods to distract potential victims.
Australians should only carry sufficient cash for their daily needs, secure their valuables against theft and avoid displays of wealth at all times. Photocopies of valuables such as passport, tickets, driving licence and travellers cheques should be kept separately.
This Advice is current for Monday 11 November 2002 EDT
The Advice was issued on Friday 08 November 2002 17:03:22 EDT
This advice has been reviewed. It contains new advice.
The terrorist attack in Bali on 12 October 2002 underscored the ongoing threat across the world posed by international terrorism. International terrorism has heightened tensions in many countries. Australians are urged to exercise care and monitor developments that may affect their safety – both through the department’s travel advice and bulletins, and the media.
The terrorist attack in Bali on 12 October 2002 underscored the ongoing threat across the world posed by international terrorism. This threat has been further highlighted by new warnings by the United States’ State Department about the possibility of terrorist actions, including suicide operations, linked to the scheduled execution in the United States of a convicted terrorist on 14 November. Separately, German intelligence has issued a new public warning about the risk of al-Qa’eda attacks against France and Germany. International terrorism has heightened tensions in some countries. This includes sporadic demonstrations and protests against conflict in the Middle East that are occurring worldwide.
Accordingly, all Australians travelling overseas should keep themselves informed of developments that could affect their safety in the countries they are visiting, both through the department’s travel advices and bulletins, and the media. Travellers should avoid any large public gatherings or demonstrations. Travellers should also be particularly alert in any commercial and public areas known to be frequented by foreigners such as clubs, restaurants, bars, hotels, places of worship, cultural and tourist sites, schools or outdoor recreation events. Caution should also be exercised in areas outside major cities. As demonstrated in Bali, terrorists are prepared to strike indiscriminately and unpredictably at Western interests, including those of Australia, across the world. Possible targets could include a country’s key economic sites and its government buildings and symbols. Importantly, however, terrorists do not discriminate between official and civilian targets.
Travellers are strongly advised to confirm travel arrangements, including onward travel, with their travel agents and airline companies. More stringent security and other checking procedures are increasingly being put in place at airports worldwide. Travellers should factor this into travel planning.