Congo-Kinshasa Travel Warning
Issued by U.S. Department of State
Apr 07, 2003
This Travel Warning is being issued to note that, even though the security situation in Congo-Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of the Congo) has slightly improved, the Department continues to warn U.S. citizens against travel to Congo-Kinshasa. This Travel Warning supersedes the Warning issued July 1, 2002.
The Department of State warns U.S. citizens against travel to Congo-Kinshasa. Despite some improvement in the security environment in Kinshasa, the capital, and recent advances in the peace process, Congo-Kinshasa remains unstable. Travel in the eastern provinces of the country, especially in rural areas, is considered unsafe due to the number
of uncontrolled militias operating there. U.S. citizens who choose to travel to or live in Congo-Kinshasa despite this
warning should continue to review their personal security situations and exercise caution.
The Congolese government controls the western, central and southern regions of the country. Rebels control the north and east. Though the government and various rebel factions signed a power sharing agreement, it has yet to be implemented and the country remains divided. A United Nations observer force has been deployed to a number of locations throughout the country, and in many of these areas, security has improved. Nevertheless, unofficial armed groups and active duty troops operating in some parts of the country are responsible for pillaging, vehicle thefts, carjackings, extra-judicial killings, kidnappings, ethnic tensions, and continued military/paramilitary operations. Travelers run the risk of attack or detention. Travelers should avoid any area where demonstrations are occurring or where crowds are
gathered. There are numerous military roadblocks throughout the country.
The Congolese government-imposed curfews are no longer in effect, although they could be reinstated if the security situation deteriorates.
In the past, U.S. citizens, English-speaking individuals of other nationalities and travelers who appear to be members of military or missionary groups have sometimes been targeted for arrest, detention, deportation, and increased scrutiny. They have also experienced difficulties at the airport and other ports of entry, or other forms of
harassment. Some travelers arriving with Rwandan, Ugandan or Burundian visas or entry/exit stamps in their passports have experienced problems at the airport.
U.S. citizens who plan to enter Congo-Kinshasa despite this Travel Warning are urged to register at the U.S. Embassy in Kinshasa upon their arrival and to obtain updated information on safety and security within Congo-Kinshasa.
The U.S. Embassy is located at 310 Avenue des Aviateurs, tel. 243-81-225-5872. Entrance to the Consular Section of the Embassy is on Avenue Dumi, opposite Ste. Anne residence. The Consular Section of the Embassy may be reached at
tel. 243-88-43608, 243-88-46859 or 243-88-44609; fax 243-88-00228, 243-88-43467 or 243-88-03276. Cellular phones are the norm, as other telephone service is often unreliable.
U.S. citizens should also consult the Department of State's Consular Information Sheet for Congo-Kinshasa, and the Worldwide Caution Public Announcement, which are located on the Department's Internet web site at