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Yemen Travel Warning

Issued by U.S. State Department

Dec 03, 2001

The Department of State continues to warn United States citizens to defer travel to Yemen. The September 11 terrorist attacks in the United States elevated security concerns for Americans in Yemen that already were high following a number of terrorist actions and kidnapping incidents over the past few years. Previous incidents included the October 2000 attack on a U.S. Navy vessel in port at Aden, which resulted in the death of 17 American servicemen and women, and the December 1998 kidnapping of 16 Western tourists, four of whom were killed in a clash between the terrorists and Yemeni government forces. Further, armed tribesmen in Yemen have kidnapped a number of foreigners in attempts to resolve disputes with the Yemeni government.

As a result of these concerns, the Department of State authorized the voluntary departure from Yemen of non-emergency U.S. Embassy personnel and the family members of all U.S. Embassy personnel. In addition, the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa has temporarily limited some services it provides the public. All regular consular services continue to be provided to American citizens, but non-immigrant visa processing has been restricted. Emergency assistance to American citizens during non-business hours is available through Embassy duty personnel, who can be contacted by telephone at 967-1-303-155.

All American citizens in Yemen are urged to review their personal security situations and to take those actions they deem appropriate to ensure their well-being, including consideration of departure from the country. U.S. citizens who choose to visit or remain in Yemen are urged to maintain a high level of vigilance, vary routes and times of travel, avoid large crowds and demonstrations, and treat mail from unfamiliar sources with suspicion.

The Embassy cautions American citizens in Yemen to exercise particular caution at locations associated with foreigners, such as the Sanaa Trade Center, American-affiliated franchises, restaurants and shops in the Haddah area in Sanaa and, in Aden and elsewhere, at restaurants and hotels associated with expatriates.

The Embassy further advises that Americans who believe they are being followed or threatened while driving in urban centers should proceed as quickly as possible to the nearest police station or major intersection and request assistance from the officers in the blue-and-white police cars stationed there.

Americans in Yemen also should ensure they are registered with the American Embassy in Sanaa and should remain in contact with the Embassy for up to date security information. For further general information on travel to Yemen, please consult the Department of State's latest Consular Information Sheet for Yemen.

This supersedes the Travel Warning for Yemen dated September 19, 2001, to update the security information, reflect the current status of consular services, and note the continuing authorization for non-emergency American Embassy personnel and all dependents to depart the country voluntarily.

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