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Travel Alert: Israel
Middle East Update Public Announcement
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Office of the Spokesman
April 10, 2002
This Public Announcement is being updated to alert Americans to large
demonstrations and other incidents, some of them violent, taking place
throughout the region in response to the increased tensions and conflict in
Israel, the West Bank and Gaza over the last few weeks. American Embassy
dependents located at several posts in the region have been authorized to
depart voluntarily as a result of increased tensions. It is possible that
further posts may authorize such departures. This Public Announcement
supersedes the Public Announcement of February 14, 2002. This Public
Announcement expires on October 8, 2002.
The Department of State is concerned about the potential for further violent
responses in the region and elsewhere due to the ongoing crisis in Israel,
the West Bank and Gaza. These have included demonstrations with
As always, the Department of State reminds Americans to remain vigilant with
regard to their personal security and to exercise caution. As stated in the
Department's Worldwide Caution Public Announcement of March 17, 2002, U.S.
citizens and interests abroad remain at increased risk of terrorist attacks,
including by groups with links to
Usama Bin Ladin's Al-Qaida organization. These individuals do not
distinguish between official and civilian targets. The Department of State
has unconfirmed reports that American citizens may be targeted for
kidnapping or other terrorist actions. In late January 2002, an American
journalist was taken hostage and murdered in Pakistan.
U.S. Government facilities worldwide remain at a heightened state of alert.
Facilities have closed and will continue to temporarily close or suspend
public services as necessary to review their security posture and ensure its
adequacy. On occasion, the travel of official personnel at embassies and
consulates around the world may be restricted, and these posts may recommend
that private American citizens avoid the same areas if at all possible.
Services to American citizens could be impaired if employees' movements are
restricted. In those instances, U.S. embassies and consulates will make
every effort to provide emergency services to American citizens. American
citizens in need of emergency assistance should telephone the nearest
U.S. Embassy or Consulate before visiting there.
U.S. citizens planning to travel abroad should consult the Department of
State's Public Announcements, Travel Warnings, Consular Information Sheets,
Fact Sheets, and regional travel brochures, all of which are available at
the Consular Affairs Internet web site at http://travel.state.gov. American
citizens overseas may contact the American Citizen Services unit of the
nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate by telephone or fax for up-to-date
information on security conditions.