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East Africa Public Announcement

Issued by US Department of State

Dec 02, 2002

This Public Announcement is being issued to alert Americans to the potential for terrorist actions against U.S. citizens in east Africa. This Public Announcement expires on March 3, 2003.

On November 28, there was a car bomb attack on a hotel near Mombasa, Kenya, in which at least 11 people died, and an unsuccessful attempt to shoot down an Israeli charter plane departing Mombasa on the same day. The U.S. Government has received information, the credibility of which has not yet been confirmed, that similar attacks may also occur in Djibouti. The Department of State believes that Djibouti is one of a number of countries in east Africa where there may be an increased terrorist threat. Due to the preponderance of threat information, the Department believes it prudent to share this information with American citizens so they can make an informed decision in deciding whether to travel to or remain in east Africa.

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 Al-Qaeda organizations. Terrorists do not distinguish between official and civilian targets. Increased security at official u.s. facilities has led terrorists to seek softer targets such as residential areas, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, hotels, schools, outdoor recreation events, resorts, beaches and planes.

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 for further information.

In addition, U.S. citizens planning to travel to east Africa should consult the Department's travel information 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.

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