News Watch

Travel to Algeria poses a risk to personal safety, the Department of State says. Sustained small-scale terrorist attacks occur regularly, particularly in northeastern Algeria.

On Dec. 11, 2007, two vehicle-borne explosive devices were detonated at the UN headquarters and the Algerian Constitutional Council in Algiers. The attacks occurred in residential areas where many diplomatic missions are located. The group that claimed credit for the attacks has pledged more attacks against...


With periodic episodes of political unrest and violence, the security situation throughout Côte d’Ivoire continues to be poor and unpredictable, particularly in the western part of the country. Special care should be taken when traveling outside Abidjan.

Crime poses the highest risk for foreign visitors within Abidjan, including mugging, robbery, burglary and carjacking.

The Department of State urges U.S. citizens to consider carefully the risks of traveling to Saudi Arabia. The security threat level remains high due to the continued presence of terrorist groups, some affiliated with al Qaida, who may target Western interests, housing compounds and other facilities where Westerners congregate.

In Bangladesh, Cyclone Sidr wiped out villages, infrastructure, livestock and crops and killed nearly 3,300 people in November 2007. The worst-affected districts were in the Bay of Bengal, including Patua­khali, Barguna, Bagerhat, Barisal and Pirojpur. The damage to roads, power systems and telecommunications continues to disrupt travel and services to the region.

Regions of Indonesia were hit by the worst landslides in 25 years in December, destroying villages and roads and killing more than 81 people.

In Indonesia’s Central Java province, the Karang Anyar, Wonogiri and Sukoharjo districts were hit. In the Madium district a bridge was washed away. Flooding and landslides also caused damage on Sumatra and Sulawesi and in Gianyar, Bali.

The World Health Organization has issued a warning of higher risk of malaria for the region of Southern Africa because of unusually wet weather. Countries affected include Angola, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Namibia, Botswana and South Africa. Use malaria-prevention medications and insecticide-treated nets.

As ITN went to press, the State Department had travel warnings on 28 destinations: Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Burundi, Côte d’Ivoire, Eritrea, Somalia, Nigeria, Uzbekistan, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Lebanon, Indonesia, Yemen, Nepal, Pakistan, Syria, Timor-Leste, Sudan, Haiti, Central African Republic, Iraq, Israel/West Bank/Gaza, Chad, Colombia, Iran, Philippines, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Afghanistan.

For details, call the State Department at 202/647-5225 or visit http://travel.state....


The Department of State advises avoiding travel to northern Mali. Areas of particular concern include the Mali-Niger and Mali-Algeria borders, the Kidal region and the city of Tinzawaten. The presence of a terrorist organization and other armed groups in the north present potential dangers.

On Aug. 26-27, 2007, Tuareg dissidents attacked and kidnapped civilian and military convoys near the Mali-Niger border. On Aug. 30, a truck transporting civilians from Algeria to Tinzawaten hit a...