Travel

Control Risks

You can contact the following Alarm Centres:

Americas: (1) (215) 942 8226
Asia & the Pacific: (65) 6338 7800
Europe & Africa: (44) (20) 8762 8008
Paris, France: (33) 155 633 155

Adviced provided in these alerts represents the best judgment of AEA International Holdings Pte. Ltd. and Control Risks Group Holdings Ltd. Adice in these alerts does not however provide a warranty of future results nor a guarantee against risk.

2011 AEA International Holdings Pte. Ltd. and Control Risks Groups Holdings Ltd. All rights reserved. Reproduction (other than for authorised internal purposes) is prohibited except with the prior written consent of the copyright owners.

Travel Alerts

 

20 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Somalia: Mogadishu: Avoid vicinity of Central hotel following explosions, gunfire

Explosions and gunfire have been reported on 20 February at the Central Hotel in the Hamarweyne district of the capital Mogadishu. Unconfirmed reports indicate that the deputy prime minister and the transport minister have been injured, while 20 people have been killed. The hotel appears to have been targeted by a car bomb. Details are still emerging.

Travel Advice

  • Account for personnel.
  • Staff near the site of the attack should stand fast. Avoid the area until the situation has fully stabilised.
  • Liaise with your local security provider regarding the feasibility of movement in the area.
  • Comply with all directives issued by the security forces.
  • Expect heightened security, including checkpoints in the area following the incident.
  • Monitor our updates and liaise with local contacts to keep abreast of further developments.

 

20 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Venezuela: Caracas: Mayor’s detention sparks anti-government protests; minimise movement overnight

Anti-government protests to denounce the arrest of Antonio Ledezma, the mayor of the capital Caracas and prominent opposition member, were ongoing in the capital’s Plaza Venezuela late on 19 February. While there have been no reports of unrest so far, any opposition gathering carries a credible risk of clashes between activists and the security forces; members should avoid all related protests. Hundreds of activists and large numbers of security forces were reported at the scene; the demonstration began at approximately 19.00 (local time).

The protests were organised via social media in response to the detention of Ledezma by members of SEBIN, the state intelligence agency, earlier in the day. The heavily armed SEBIN officers fired several shots into the air before forcefully taking Ledezma from his office. The government has accused Ledezma of being involved in an alleged coup plot. Additional demonstrations are possible elsewhere in Caracas overnight on 19-20 February and in urban centres nationwide in coming days.

Travel Briefing

Anti-government protests are expected to increase in the coming days in response to the detainment of Ledezma and over other political and social grievances. The government’s coup allegations suggest that the authorities will use tough measures to disperse any unruly gatherings. The security forces are authorised to use firearms and tear gas to control demonstrations and lethal force could be employed in the event of unrest. Although foreigners are unlikely to be targeted, the use of firearms during protests underscores the significant incidental risks faced by bystanders.

Clashes can occur anywhere and at any time, though precedent indicates that violence is particularly likely in Caracas and San Cristobal (Tachira state). Members should strictly avoid known protest locations as a precaution and refrain from attempting to cross blockades, as this could elicit a hostile response from protesters and/or the security forces. Travellers should liaise with trusted local contacts to ensure that routes are clear of protests and roadblocks prior to departing.

Violent crime poses the main risk to foreigners. To minimise the risk of falling victim to crime, members should avoid displays of wealth, wearing jewellery or carrying valuables such as laptops or expensive cameras. Business travellers should not self-drive due to the risk of kidnap and carjacking. If accosted, assume that assailants are armed and do nothing to resist or antagonise them.

Travel Advice

  • Minimise movement overnight in Caracas on 19-20 February as a precaution. Avoid all demonstrations due to the credible risk of violence. If protesters or the security forces begin to congregate, vacate the area immediately and move to a secure location.
  • If movement is essential, check the status of routes and destinations with trusted local contacts prior to undertaking any overland travel. Do not attempt to cross any roadblocks as this may provoke a hostile response from demonstrators and/or the security forces. If you encounter a blockade, turn around and seek another route to your destination.
  • Travel to Venezuela should be for essential business only. If travel is essential, ensure that you are fully confident in your security, transport and accommodation arrangements and briefed on the prevailing risks prior to deployment. Be alert and plan for operational difficulties you are likely to encounter in the country, including the scarcity of food and other basic goods.
  • The above advice is not exhaustive; seek itinerary- and profile-specific advice prior to travel in Venezuela.

 

19 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Australia: South-eastern Queensland: Defer non-essential travel to areas under cyclone warnings; Severe Cyclone Marcia to make landfall early on 20 FebruarySevere Tropical Cyclone Marcia is forecast to make landfall as a category 5 storm – the highest on a five-category scale – early on 20 February near St Lawrence, between Mackay and Gladstone (all Queensland state). The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) has issued a cyclone warning from Bowen to Double Island Point (both Queensland), where wind gusts of up to 183 miles per hour (295kph) are possible.

The cyclone is also expected to bring up to 15 inches (40cm) of rainfall in the next 24-36 hours between Gladstone and the Gold Coast, including the state capital Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast. Flash flooding is therefore very likely in low-lying areas along the coast, which will be exacerbated by king tides.

Transport and essential services

Mackay Airport (MKY) has been closed and flights have been suspended at Rockhampton (ROK), Gladstone (GLT), Bundaberg (BDB) and Hervey Bay (HVB) airports. Further cancellations should be anticipated in the coming hours at these and other airports along the coast, including Sunshine Coast (MCY), Brisbane (BNE) and Gold Coast (OOL) airports.

Strong winds have disrupted electricity supply in parts of Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast; widespread power outages can be expected over the next 12-24 hours, particularly between Mackay and Gladstone.

Travel Advice

Ahead of, during the cyclone

  • Defer non-essential travel to locations under an official cyclone warning. Monitor the BOM website and Queensland’s Disaster Management Services website for up-to-date information, advice and warnings, and be prepared to respond accordingly.
  • Members in locations that will be affected by the storm should shelter in a safe place during the approach and passage of the storm. Follow all directives from emergency personnel. Prepare appropriate clothing and a grab bag with essentials such as a torch, water and high-energy foods in case an emergency relocation becomes necessary.
  • There is a high threat of flooding from storm surges, and those living in low-lying coastal areas should take this into account; stay away from rivers and other bodies of water, which are susceptible to flooding. Secure boats and property.
  • Disruption to essential services, such as electricity supply, is expected due to heavy rainfall and strong winds. Charge all communication devices and, where feasible, keep extra batteries for back-up.

Following the passage of the storm

  • If planning to travel in areas affected by the passage of the storm, reconfirm flight and other transport bookings with the relevant service providers. We do not hold information on specific flights.
  • Roads may be blocked by debris and uprooted trees. After the storm has abated, reconfirm the status of routes before setting out by consulting the Queensland Traffic and Travel Information website, or calling 13 19 40.
  • Avoid floodwaters, which may be electrically charged due to underground or fallen power lines. Do not drive through flooded areas. If you see a flooded road ahead, turn around and find another route to your destination.

 

18 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Pakistan: Rawalpindi: Avoid vicinity of Kurri Road on 18 February following explosion, reports of gunfireGunfire is reportedly ongoing on 18 February at an imambargah (Shia Muslim congregation hall) on Kurri Road, in Rawalpindi (Punjab province). At least seven people have reportedly been injured in a suspected suicide bombing.

Travel Advice

  • Account for all staff.
  • Avoid the vicinity of Kurri road till the situation clarifies.
  • If in the affected area, stand fast in a secure location until the situation stabilises. Follow all instructions issued by the authorities.
  • Monitor our travel security alerts on Pakistan for related updates.

 

17 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Afghanistan: Pul-i-Alam: Avoid police headquarters due to ongoing militant attackReports on 17 February indicate that a militant attack in ongoing on the police headquarters in Pul-i-Alam, the capital of Logar province. At least two suicide bombers detonated their explosives at the entrance to the premises, following which other militants reportedly entered the building and are currently engaged in a gunfight with the security forces. Further details are still emerging.Travel Advice

  • Account for all staff and avoid the vicinity of the police headquarters in Pul-i-Alam until the situation clarifies.
  • If in the affected area, stand fast in a secure location until the situation stabilises. Comply with all directives issued by the security forces.
  • Liaise with your local security provider regarding feasibility of essential movement.
  • Monitor our travel security alerts on Afghanistan for related updates.

 

17 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Pakistan: Lahore: Avoid vicinity of suspected suicide bombing in Qila Gujjar Singh areaAt least eight people were reportedly killed in an explosion on 17 February near a hotel near Police Lines in the Qila Gujjar Singh area of Lahore (Punjab province). Initial reports suggested that the explosion may have been caused by a suicide bomber. The blast also damaged nearby buildings and cars parked in the vicinity. The security forces have cordoned off the area.Travel Advice

  • Account for staff.
  • Avoid the vicinity of the bombing until the situation becomes clearer.
  • Expect heightened security and associated disruption in the vicinity of the explosion in the coming hours, as the security forces conduct investigations. Carry personal identification documents to ease passage.
  • Monitor our travel security alerts on Pakistan for further updates.

 

17 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Japan: Tsunami advisory for Iwate prefecture cancelled; no damage reported following strong offshore earthquake (Revised 17 Feb)The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) cancelled a tsunami advisory for Iwate prefecture at 10.20 (local time) on 17 February; the advisory had been issued following a magnitude 6.8 offshore earthquake, which occurred at 08.06. According to the JMA, the tremblor struck approximately 130 miles (210km) east of the city of Miyako (Iwate) and caused tidal surges of around 4 inches (10cm) at 08.47. There were no reports of damage or injuries.Travel Briefing

There is no longer a threat of a tsunami, though aftershocks of varying magnitudes are possible in the coming hours and may result in localised disruption. Japan is prone to earthquakes as it is situated on one of the world’s most seismically active areas. Members should adhere to the directives of the authorities during all earthquakes and tsunami advisories.

Travel Advice Summary

  • Normal travel can continue.
  • Abide by all directives issued by the local authorities in the affected areas.
  • Aftershocks of varying magnitudes are possible and could pose a risk to life and property.
  • Monitor our travel security alerts on Japan for any related developments.

 

15 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Denmark: Copenhagen: Monitor developments, expect heightened security following fatal shootings (Revised 09.40 GMT)Members in the capital Copenhagen should anticipate heightened security and follow all directives issued by the authorities following fatal shootings on 14-15 February in which two civilians were killed and five police officers were injured. The police said that they killed the perpetrator of the attacks following a shoot-out at around 05.00 (local time) on 15 February near the Norrebro train station in the north-western Norrebro district of the capital. The authorities also believe that the suspect acted alone in the shootings.One person was killed and three police officers injured when up to 40 shots were fired at around 15.30 on 14 February at the Krudttoenden café in the Fælledparken area while a meeting on freedom of expression was under way. The meeting was being attended by the controversial Swedish artist Lars Vilks and the French ambassador to Denmark; both men were unhurt. The incident was followed by another shooting incident at around 01.00 on 15 February at a synagogue in the Krystalgade area; one person was killed and two police officers were injured. The police subsequently launched a manhunt, which ended with the shoot-out in Norrebro.Travel Briefing

While travel to Copenhagen can continue, heightened security, including checkpoints, should be expected in the city as further investigations into the attacks continue. Members should carry relevant identification documents to ease passage through any spot-checks and follow all instructions issued by the police. Although the motive behind the shootings has not been confirmed, Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt termed the shooting at the Krudttoenden café a terrorist attack. Media reports have drawn attention to the presence at the meeting of Vilks, who had previously received death threats from Islamist extremists for drawing caricatures of the Muslim prophet Muhammad.

The country is a potential target for terrorist attacks, partly because of the controversial publication in 2005-06 of a series of cartoons depicting the prophet by a Danish newspaper. However, the country has good counter-terrorism capabilities, which have mitigated the threat of attacks. As indicated by the latest incidents, there remains a potential for ‘lone-wolf’ attacks on government buildings or ‘soft’ civilian targets rather than a large-scale strike. The risk of such attacks is higher in Copenhagen due to the concentration of such targets there. Members should remain alert to their surroundings and report any suspicious behaviour to the authorities.

Travel Advice Summary

  • Travel to Copenhagen can continue.
  • Avoid the Fælledparken, Krystalgade and Norrebro areas while police investigations continue; carry relevant identification documents to ease passage though checkpoints and follow all directives issued by the police.
  • Remain alert to your surroundings and report any suspicious behaviour to the authorities.
  • Monitor our travel security alerts on Denmark for further updates.

 

13 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Pakistan: Peshawar: Expect heightened security, associated disruption following attack on Shia Muslim congregation (Revised 12.20 GMT)Heightened security and associated disruption should be expected in Peshawar (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province) in the coming hours, after at least 19 people on 13 February were killed and more than 40 others injured in a militant attack on the Imamia Masjid imambargah (Shia Muslim congregation hall) in the upscale Hayatabad area. The Islamist extremist Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has claimed responsibility for the incident.The attack, which reportedly occurred during Friday midday prayers, was carried out by at least three assailants, one of whom detonated an explosive vest. One of the attackers was shot dead by the police, while another was arrested. The authorities have cordoned off the area while investigations continue.Travel Briefing

While there is already a heavy and highly visible security force presence in Peshawar, security measures will be tightened further in the aftermath of the attack. Members undertaking essential travel to the city should minimise movement in the city and anticipate stringent movement restrictions, particularly in the immediate vicinity of the imambargah. Travellers should allow additional time for journeys and carry relevant identification to ease passage through security checks.

Despite the heavy security force presence, Peshawar and its surrounding areas continue to experience regular militant attacks, some of which have directly targeted foreigners. Such incidents usually take the form of bombings and targeted shootings, though large-scale suicide attacks also occur periodically, including in central or upscale areas. Travellers should remain alert at all times and minimise time spent in the vicinity of potential targets, including marketplaces, government and security force personnel and installations, as well as religious sites. The risks associated with travel to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, including Peshawar, continue to be rated as EXTREME.

Travel Advice Summary

  • Peshawar is an EXTREME travel risk location, to which we advise against all but essential travel due to the risks posed by insurgency and related military operations. Any travel to the city must be conducted with security support.
  • Anticipate heightened security, including more stringent procedures at security checkpoints, and associated disruption across Peshawar in the coming hours. Allow additional time for essential journeys in the Hayatabad area and carry identification documents at all times to ease passage through checkpoints.
  • There is a significant risk of terrorist attack by Islamist militants in Pakistan. Foreigners, in particular Westerners, may be directly targeted. Likely targets include government and military personnel, Shia Muslim and Christian religious gatherings, densely populated unsecured areas such as markets, Western embassies, and places where Westerners and the Pakistani elite are known to congregate. Maintain awareness at all times, minimise your exposure to likely targets and report suspicious behaviour to the authorities.
  • Ensure that due diligence of accommodation is conducted during the selection process, identifying the level of security in place, the location of the hotel and any supporting infrastructure; only business-class hotels or secure residential compounds should be considered.
  • This above advice is not exhaustive; refer to our Standing Travel Advice for Pakistan, and contact your nearest Assistance Centre for itinerary- and profile-specific advice prior to travel to the country.

 

10 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Afghanistan: Kunduz city: Attack on police headquarters underscores need to avoid non-essential travel (Revised 08.23 GMT)A co-ordinated attack by insurgents on the police headquarters in Kunduz (Kunduz province) on the morning of 10 February ended at around 12.00 (local time) after all the assailants were killed. The assault – which reportedly involved at least five attackers – began at around 10.00 with an explosion near the building, possibly caused by a suicide bomb or car bomb, following which the militants engaged in a shoot-out with the security forces. Although the attack is over, members in Kunduz should liaise with their security provider on feasibility of movement in the area.Initial reports suggested that the attackers, reportedly including at least two suicide bombers, had succeeded in entering the targeted building during the assault, though this has not been confirmed. The Taliban have claimed responsibility for the incident, which underlines the need to avoid non-essential travel to the country. One police officer was killed and three other people were injured in the attack.Travel BriefingThe incident underlines that the majority of militant attacks in the country continue to focus on security and government personnel and assets. However, militant attacks on ‘soft’ targets, such as shopping centres, cinemas and marketplaces, also occur periodically. As such, members undertaking essential travel to the country should minimise movement outside secure premises and time spent around likely targets for insurgent attack, both static and in transit.

If scheduled to travel in the vicinity of the police headquarters in Kunduz in the coming hours, members should allow additional time for journeys and carry relevant personal identification to ease movement through checkpoints. Heightened security should also be expected in the vicinity of the targeted location in the coming hours as the authorities conduct follow-up investigations.

Travel Advice Summary

  • Members in Kunduz should liaise with their security provider regarding feasibility of movement.
  • Anticipate increased security and associated disruption in the vicinity of the police headquarters in Kunduz. Comply with all instructions issued by the authorities and carry relevant personal identification to ease movement through checkpoints.
  • The above advice is not exhaustive; consult the Standing Travel Advice for Afghanistan.

 

8 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Guatemala: Reconfirm flights after increased activity at Fuego volcano causes closure of Guatemala City airport (Revised 02.45 GMT)

Increased activity at Fuego volcano (Chimaltenango department) on 7 February caused the closure of La Aurora International Airport (GUA), which serves the capital Guatemala City, later in the same day. The airport authorities said the facility will remain closed until at least 8 February; travellers intending to use the airport in the coming days should contact their airline.The volcano is located around 12 miles (19km) from the city of Antigua (Sacatepéquez department) and 25 miles (40km) south-west of Guatemala City. The country’s National Institute of Seismology, Volcanology, Metereology and Hydrology (Insivumeh) on 7 February issued an orange alert (the second highest on a three-tier system) in response to the volcanic increased activity.Falling ash has been reported in various parts of Chimaltenango, including in Parramos and Yepocapa municipalities and in Antigua (Sacatepéquez department), as well as in areas near the volcano, including Cenizas, Las Lajas, Santa Teresa and Trinidad Canyon. Reports indicate that several vehicles and buildings in the areas close to the volcano have been completely covered in ash. The National Coordinator for Disaster Reduction agency on 7 February urged people in affected areas to take shelter, wear masks, cover water tanks, and plan evacuation routes. While the authorities in affected areas have been put on alert, the government has not ordered any evacuations so far.Travel Advice

  • We do not hold information on specific flights; reconfirm schedules with the relevant airline prior to setting out.
  • Avoid the vicinity of the Fuego volcano and comply with all directives issued by the authorities when travelling in the area.
  • Consult the websites of Insivumeh and the National Co-ordinator for Disaster Reduction (Conred; alerts in Spanish only) for the latest information on the volcano. In addition, volcanic activity is often accompanied by earthquakes, which can pose risks to life and property; sporadic power outages and telecommunications failures can be expected during increased seismic activity. Check that you hotel is equipped with back-up power generators. Travellers in the region should also consider packing a ‘grab bag’ in case a move is required at short notice. A ‘grab bag’ should include: a torch/flashlight with extra batteries; first-aid kit; essential medicines; bottled water and snack foods; battery-operated radio; knife/multi-tool; and whistle.
  • Falling ash may disrupt overland travel in the region. Do not self-drive unless very familiar with local conditions. Use a modest model of vehicle equipped with adequate communications systems, spares and a full medical kit. Reconfirm the feasibility of journeys with local contacts before setting out. Falling ash could also reduce visibility in areas around the volcano. Precedents indicate this may impede travel in affected areas, and on the Pacific highway and the CA-02 west that leads to Mazatenango (Suchitepéquez department)
  • Monitor our travel security alerts on Guatemala for related updates. Contact the nearest Assistance Centre for specific advice.

 

7 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Yemen: Sanaa: Attack on Shia militiamen at presidential palace underscores persistent militancy threat in capital (Revised 11.36 GMT)An improvised explosive device exploded on 7 February near the southern entrance of the presidential palace in the capital Sanaa, injuring at least two people. The victims were reportedly Zaydi Shia Muslim Houthi militiamen guarding the entrance of the facility, which has been under Houthi control since last week. The attack comes a day after the Houthi rebels declared the dissolution of the parliament. The incident highlights the persistent threat from militancy in the capital, which contributes to the city’s EXTREME travel risk rating.Travel BriefingAlthough no group has claimed responsibility for the attack, the involvement of the extremist al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) group and disfranchised political groups opposed to the Houthis, who have recently taken control of government facilities, cannot be ruled out. The extremist group has significantly stepped up its attacks in Sanaa following the Houthi movement’s takeover of the capital in September 2014, with such incidents generally focused on government and Houthi targets.Members should continue to defer all travel to mainland Yemen with the exception of Sanaa, where visits remain possible with enhanced security precautions. Travellers in Sanaa should stay clear from security force facilities as well as positions belonging to the Houthi movement. Further violence directed at Houthi interests in Sanaa and elsewhere is very likely in the weeks ahead, and would pose significant incidental risks to travellers in the affected area.

Travel Advice Summary

  • Defer all travel to mainland Yemen except Sanaa, where journeys and expatriation remain possible with enhanced security precautions and fully co-ordinated journey-management plans.
  • All travel to Sanaa should be undertaken in close co-ordination with a professional security provider.
  • Travellers should continue to closely monitor related developments due to the potential for associated unrest and retaliation. Members should maintain the capacity to stand fast for at least 72 hours.
  • For further assessments and advice on travel to Yemen, contact your nearest Assistance Centre.

 

4 Feb 2015

Special Advisory – Taiwan: Taipei: Casualties reported in TransAsia Airways flight crash; rescue operations under way (Revised 06.19 GMT)

At least nine people were reportedly killed on 4 February when a TransAsia Airways flight crashed at around 10.00 (local time) into the Keelung river in the Nankang district of the capital Taipei. The ATR-72 plane, which was en route from Taipei Songshan Airport (TSA) to Kinmen Airport (KNH, Fujian province) crashed after hitting a vehicle and subsequently an elevated bridge. Reports indicate that 58 people were aboard the plane. Rescue operations are under way.Travel Advice

  • Account for personnel.
  • Contact your airline and Taipei airport for the latest information.
  • Monitor our travel security alerts on Taiwan for further updates.

 

27 Jan 2015

Special Advisory – Libya: Tripoli: Stand fast due to ongoing attack at Corinthia hotel; casualties reportedAn unknown number of gunmen have attacked the Corinthia hotel in the capital Tripoli on 27 January, according to local sources. The situation is reportedly ongoing. Explosions have also been heard near the hotel. Details of the incident are still emerging; casualties have been reported, though the number is unknown.Travel Advice

  • Account for all personnel.
  • Avoid the vicinity of the Corinthia hotel until the situation clarifies.
  • If you are in the affected area, stand fast in a secure location until the situation stabilises.
  • Liaise with your local security provider regarding feasibility of movement.
  • Monitor our travel security alerts on Libya for related updates.

 

23 Jan 2015

Special Advisory – Haiti: Port-au-Prince: Anticipate, avoid further anti-government protests following major opposition rally (Revised 22.58 GMT)Members in the capital Port-au-Prince should anticipate and avoid the vicinity of any further major anti-government protests, due to the credible risk of unrest. Demonstrators demanding the ouster of President Michel Martelly on 23 January marched along Boulevard Toussaint L’Ouverture (the primary airport road) towards the capital’s Toussaint L’Ouverture International Airport (PAP). The police reportedly used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse the protesters; it is unclear whether there were any casualties.Travel BriefingAfter political leaders failed to reach an agreement to stave off the political crisis, the country’s parliament was dissolved on 12 January and Martelly began to rule by decree. Although the president has assured the public he intends to schedule elections promptly, major opposition protests demanding that Martelly step down have persisted. The arrival of a UN delegation to the country on 23 January has further heightened political tensions, and fresh demonstrations and associated unrest are likely throughout and after the delegation’s three-day visit.The security forces are liable to use tear gas, water cannon and live ammunition to disperse demonstrators, who are themselves often armed. Travellers in the capital should liaise with local contacts for information on further protests, plan essential journeys avoiding known flashpoints and march routes, and vacate an area at the first sign that protesters and/or the security forces are beginning to gather. Roadblocks are often erected during demonstrations and members should allow extra time to complete essential overland journeys.Travel Advice Summary

  • Travel to Haiti should be for essential purposes only; independent travel is inadvisable.
  • Avoid the vicinity of government buildings and all protest locations to mitigate the risk of exposure to any incidental violence that may occur. Vacate an area immediately if a large crowd or concentration of the security forces begins to develop.
  • Minimise movement while protests are ongoing. In the event of unrest, stand fast in a secure location until the situation stabilises. Be prepared to stand fast for at least 96 hours.
  • Monitor our travel security alerts on Haiti to remain abreast of the situation as it develops.

 

21 Jan 2015

Special Advisory – Israel: Tel Aviv: Expect heightened security, related disruption following multiple stabbing on bus (Revised 08.35 GMT)At least nine people were injured early on 21 January when a Palestinian man stabbed them on a public bus on Begin Road near Maariv Bridge in Tel Aviv (Tel Aviv district). The security forces subsequently shot, injured and arrested the suspected assailant as he attempted to escape. The police have said that the man is a resident of Tulkarm in the West Bank (Palestinian Territories), who was residing in Israel illegally.Following the attack, the authorities have increased security in the city and are searching for possible accomplices. While there has been no claim of responsibilty for the attack so far, the incident could be linked to currently heightened tensions between Palestinians and Israelis which have prompted several previous similar incidents in Israel in the past few months. Travellers in Tel Aviv should comply with all security directives and should carry personal identification to ease passage through any checkpoints.Travel BriefingThe incident serves as a reminder of the underlying risk of terrorism in the country; recent attacks have been largely low-tech and carried out by individuals, often during periods of heightened communal tensions. Although such attacks pose primarily incidental risks to travellers, members should nonetheless minimise movement in the vicinity of likely targets, which include public transport, military and government premises and personnel, and poorly secured and densely populated public areas.Terrorism-related travel security risks are generally higher in Jerusalem than in Tel Aviv; the former has witnessed sporadic terrorist attacks in recent years due to its religious importance and disputed history, whereas the last major attack in Tel Aviv took place in April 2006, when a suicide bomber detonated his explosives outside a restaurant near the old central bus station, killing 11 people. Members in Tel Aviv should nonetheless remain alert to their surroundings and report any suspicious activity to the authorities.Travel Advice Summary

  • Expect heightened security and associated disruption following the latest incident; comply with all security directives and carry personal identification to ease passage through any checkpoints.
  • There is an underlying risk of terrorism in Israel; minimise movement in the vicinity of likely targets, including public transport, military and government premises and personnel and poorly secured and densely populated public areas.
  • Do not use public buses because these are one of the most preferred targets for Palestinian militants.
  • Stay alert to your surroundings and report any suspicious activity to the authorities.
  • This advice is not exhaustive; consult our Standing Travel Advice for Israel and monitor our travel security alerts for related developments.

 

20 Jan 2015

Special Advisory – Yemen: Sanaa: Defer all travel, stand fast following reported Houthi takeover of presidential palace (Revised 17.43 GMT)Government officials reported that Houthi groups seized the presidential palace late on 20 January in the capital Sanaa. Houthi militias also attacked President Abdo Rabbu Mansour Hadi’s residence on the day and fighting between Houthis and presidential guard units was reported near the intersection of Zubayri and 60 Meter Road; artillery shells also landed in the vicinity of the residence. Unconfirmed reports indicate that the military has closed portions of 60 Meter Road. Details currently remain unclear, with several contradictory reports.Additionally, unidentified gunmen opened fire on a US embassy vehicle near the embassy compound late on 19 January, though no injuries were reported. Members should defer all travel to Sanaa until further notice due to the potential for further Houthi-related violence in the coming hours and days. Travellers in the city should stand fast.Travel BriefingFurther violence is likely in Sanaa over the coming hours and days. Houthi targeting of presidential assets is liable to result in a spike in political instability in the near term and the security situation in the capital will remain precarious. Both the security forces and Houthi militias have deployed additional personnel to the city and tensions remain high. Houthi groups have previously attempted to leverage control of critical infrastructure and assets in the capital to allow them a greater say in the political transition process.Intense clashes took place in the city on 19 January between government forces and the Houthis. A ceasefire on the following day temporarily halted widespread fighting, though sporadic gunfire continued to be reported. Further truces and ceasefire agreements are possible. Nevertheless, both sides have diffuse command and control structures, making any such agreement difficult to enforce and subject to sudden breakdown. Travellers in the city should closely monitor developments.Travel Advice

  • Defer all travel to Sanaa until further notice.
  • Travellers in the city should stand-fast until the situation stabilises.
  • Liaise with your localised security provider for up-to-date information.
  • This advice is not exhaustive; see our standing travel advice and monitor our travel security alerts for further information.

 

20 Jan 2015

Special Advisory – Congo (DRC): Kinshasa: Roadblocks reported on airport road amid ongoing unrest; defer non-essential travelMembers in the capital Kinshasa should continue to minimise non-essential movement on 20 January as students have engaged in fresh protests against changes to the electoral law. Members planning to travel to Kinshasa within the next 24 hours should defer non-essential travel; according to as local sources, protesters have erected roadblocks on Boulevard Lumumba, which links the city centre with N’Djili International Airport, between the Limete and Matete areas. The roadblocks mean travellers to and from the airport must detour through nearby areas such as Limete, which is an opposition stronghold and prone to unrest.Members currently in areas affected by unrest should stand fast until the situation stabilises. Clashes between protesters and the police have been reported on 20 January around Rond-Point Victoire and in the Ngaba area, both located south of Boulevard Triomphal and away from the upscale residential district of La Gombe; however, some local sources have reported protesters in the vicinity of the Memling hotel. A heavy security force presence remains in place around La Gombe, where no significant unrest had been reported as of 12.30 (local time).Local sources in Kinshasa and Lubumbashi (the capital of Katanga province), said SMS and internet services have been suspended, though no protests were observed in Lubumbashi. Protests were also reported in Goma (North Kivu).Travel Advice

  • Defer non-essential travel to Congo (DRC) due to ongoing unrest; those already in the country should minimise non-essential movement.
  • If undertaking essential movement, including travel to the capital’s N’Djili International Airport (FIH), confirm routes are clear before setting out, use security support, and leave the area at the first sign of unrest.
  • Due to the suspension of SMS and internet services, ensure you have access to alternative means of communications. These should include landlines and satellite phones.
  • If you are in an area affected by unrest, stand fast and ask trusted local contacts to procure food and other essential supplies if required. Any moves should be undertaken only to reach a safer location, and with adequate security support.
  • Flights to and from Kinshasa may be cancelled at short notice. If you are planning to fly to or from Kinshasa in the coming hours for essential purposes, reconfirm your booking.
  • Monitor our travel security alerts for related developments.

 

19 Jan 2015

Special Advisory – Yemen: Sanaa: Clashes between Houthis, security forces reported near presidential palace; avoid area

Clashes were reported on 19 January between security forces and armed members of the Shia Muslim Houthi movement near the presidential palace in the capital Sanaa. Associated gunfire was also heard across the city. The incident follows a 24-hour deadline for the release of the president’s chief of staff, who was reportedly abducted by the Houthis on 17 January from the capital. Details are still emerging.Travel Advice

  • Account for personnel.
  • Avoid the vicinity of the presidential palace in Sanaa.
  • Minimise non-essential travel in the area.
  • Liaise with local security providers regarding the feasibility of movement.
  • Monitor our travel security alerts for related updates.

 

17 Jan 2015

Special Advisory – Canada: Alberta province: Shooting at St. Albert related to criminal activity, not indicative of increased travel risksThe police in St. Albert (Alberta province), a north-western suburb of the provincial capital Edmonton, have located the gunman suspected of shooting and injuring two police officers on 17 January. The shooting occurred at Apex Casino around 04.00 (local time), when the officers were investigating a stolen automobile in the area.The authorities have said there is no longer any public safety threat, but nevertheless advised the public to avoid the casino and Sturgeon Valley Golf Club while follow-up investigations are under way.Travel BriefingThe shooting, which appears to have been criminal in nature and not a targeted attack on police officers, does not indicate an increased risks to travellers. Increased security measures are likely to persist in St. Albert over the coming hours as the authorities continue follow-up investigations. Members should continue to exercise caution and remain vigilant to their surroundings.Travel Advice Summary

  • Expect increased security measures in St Albert over the coming hours as follow-up investigations are under way. Follow all directives issued by the authorities and avoid the vicinity of Sturgeon Valley Golf Club and Apex Casino.
  • Monitor our alerts on Canada for further updates.

 

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