Issued by U.S. Department of State
Nov 04, 2002
This Public Announcement is being updated to remind Americans of the potential for further terrorist actions against U.S. citizens abroad, specifically in the Middle East, including the Persian Gulf, the Arabian Peninsula, and North Africa. This supersedes the Public Announcement of May 21, 2002, and expires on May 30, 2003.
The Department of State reminds Americans to remain vigilant with regard to their personal security and to exercise caution. U.S. citizens and interests abroad remain at risk of terrorist attacks by groups including, but not limited to, those with links to Usama Bin Ladin's Al-Qaida organizations. 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. Recent terrorist attacks have included the attacks on U.S. forces in Kuwait that killed one Marine, an attack against a French oil tanker off the coast of Yemen, and the murder of a U.S. diplomat in Jordan. Private American citizens may also be targeted for other terrorist actions, including kidnapping.
U.S. Government facilities worldwide remain at a heightened state of alert. Facilities may temporarily close or suspend public services to review their security posture and ensure its adequacy. On occasion, the travel of official personnel at embassies and consulates around the world is restricted and these posts may recommend that private American citizens avoid the same areas if at all possible. Services to American citizens could be restricted 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.
In addition, U.S. citizens planning to travel to the Middle East or North Africa 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.