Heightened security measures are to be expected in Israel, especially near religious sites, during Yom Kippur, which is set to take place from Tuesday, September 18, to Thursday, September 20. Only limited public transportation services are expected to run during this holiday period. In the past, Israeli authorities have closed airports and canceled flights for the duration of the celebrations.
Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) is one of the most important holidays on the Jewish calendar. It will take place in a context of high tensions this year, with numerous clashes having occurred over the past few weeks and months between Israeli security forces and Palestinian protesters. More than 170 Palestinians and two Israeli soldiers have been killed in border clashes since protests related to the Great March of Return have begun in March.
Travelers are advised to allow additional time to reach their destinations and to avoid public gatherings or demonstrations due to the potential for violence, especially in Jerusalem. Due to the ongoing terrorist threat, visitors to Israel are advised to report any suspicious objects or behavior to the authorities and to remain vigilant when visiting sites deemed particularly likely to be targeted in an attack (public transportation, train stations, ports, airports, public or government buildings, embassies or consulates, international organizations, schools and universities, religious sites, markets, hotels and restaurants frequented by foreigners/Westerners, etc.). As a reminder, several Western governments advise their citizens against all travel to the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, and areas near the Lebanese, Syrian, and Egyptian borders.
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