Middle East & North Africa Travel Warning
Issued by US Department of State
May 06, 2003
This Public Announcement is being updated to remind U.S. citizens of the
continuing threat of anti-American violence, including terrorist actions
that may target civilians specifically in the Middle East, including the
Persian Gulf, the Arabian Peninsula and North Africa. This Public
Announcement supersedes the Public Announcement issued on March 19, 2003,
and expires on October 1, 2003.
The Department of State reminds U.S. citizens traveling to the Middle East
and North Africa that despite somewhat lessened tensions accompanying the
end of major U.S. combat operations in Iraq, there remains a potential
threat to U.S. citizens and interests in the region posed by those harboring
anti-American sentiments, including the risk of attacks by terrorist groups.
The U.S. Government remains deeply concerned about the security of U.S.
citizens overseas. U.S. citizens are encouraged to maintain a high level of
vigilance and to take appropriate steps to increase their security
Credible information has indicated terrorist groups may be planning attacks
against U.S. interests in the Middle East. Terrorist actions may include
suicide operations, bombings or kidnappings. While conventional weapons
such as explosive devices are a more immediate threat in many areas, use of
non-conventional weapons, including chemical or biological agents must be
considered a possible threat. Terrorists do not distinguish between
official and civilian targets. Increased security at official U.S.
facilities has led terrorists and their sympathizers to seek softer targets
such as residential areas, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, hotels,
schools, outdoor recreation events, resorts and beaches.
On occasion, the travel of official personnel at embassies and consulates
around the world is restricted because of security concerns, and these posts
may recommend that private U.S. citizens avoid the same areas if at all
possible. Services to U.S. citizens may be affected if employees' movements
are restricted. If this happens, U.S. embassies and consulates will make
every effort to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens. In case office
hours are reduced, U.S. citizens in need of emergency assistance should
telephone the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate before visiting in person.
In addition, U.S. citizens planning to travel to the Middle East or North
Africa should consult the Department of State's country-specific Public
Announcements, Travel Warnings, Consular Information Sheets, the Worldwide
Caution Public Announcement, Fact Sheets, and regional travel brochures on
the Consular Affairs Internet website at http://travel.state.gov.
Up-to-date information on security conditions can also be obtained by
calling 1-888-407-4747 in the U.S. and for callers outside the U.S. and
Canada a regular toll line at 1-317-472-2328.