Nigeria Travel Warning
Issued by US Department of State
Jan 05, 2004
This Travel Warning is being issued to update information on
religious/ethnic tensions, and fraudulent practices. This supersedes the
Travel Warning issued June 26, 2003.
The Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the dangers of travel to
Nigeria. Conditions in Nigeria pose considerable risks to travelers.
Violent crime committed by ordinary criminals, as well as by persons in
police and military uniforms, can occur throughout the country. Kidnapping
for ransom of persons associated with the petroleum sector, including U.S.
citizens, remains common in the Niger Delta area.
Religious tension between some Muslim and Christian communities results in
occasional acts of isolated communal violence that could erupt quickly and
without warning. Rival ethnic groups have clashed violently, most recently
in the Niger Delta region around Warri city.
Periodically, travel by U.S. mission personnel is restricted based on
changing security conditions. U.S. citizens should contact the U.S. Embassy
in Abuja or the U.S. Consulate General in Lagos for the most up-to-date
information on these restrictions.
Use of public transportation throughout Nigeria can be dangerous and should
be avoided. Taxis pose risks because of the possibility of fraudulent or
criminal operators, old and unsafe vehicles, and poorly maintained roads.
Most Nigerian airlines have aging fleets, and maintenance and operational
procedures may be inadequate to ensure passenger safety.
Nigerian-based business and individuals conduct advance fee fraud and other
scams that target foreigners worldwide. These fraudulent activities pose
great risk of financial loss. Recipients pursuing such fraudulent offers
open themselves to the possibility of physical harm if they travel to
Nigeria. Persons contemplating business deals in Nigeria are strongly urged
to check with the U.S. Department of Commerce or the U.S. Department of
State before providing any information or making any financial commitments.
No one should provide personal financial or account information to unknown
parties. An invitation to enter Nigeria without a visa is normally
indicative of illegal activity. Under no circumstances should U.S. citizens
travel to Nigeria without a valid visa. Furthermore, the ability of U.S.
Embassy officers to extricate U.S. citizens from unlawful business deals and
their consequences is extremely limited.
Worldwide cautions pertaining to terrorist threats should be read by all
prospective travelers to Nigeria and are applicable to all American citizens
and facilities in Nigeria. Please see the current Worldwide Caution Public