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Algeria: US Department of State warns of continued terror threat

United States Department of State renews warning advising against travel to south and east of Algiers, the vicinity of Constantine, and its eastern and southern borders

25 Jun 05:58 PM UTC
TIMEFRAME expected from 6/21/2017, 12:00 AM until 6/23/2017, 11:59 PM (Africa/Algiers). COUNTRY/REGION Algiers

Event

The United States Department of State has renewed its travel warning for Algeria, advising against all travel to within 50 km (31 mi) of the country's eastern border, and 450 km (280 mi) of the southern border. US officials also advised against overland travel across the Sahara, and driving on non-major highways east of Algiers and the mountainous areas east and immediately south of Algiers. Travelers are also warned against staying overnight anywhere other than major cities and tourist destinations.

Context

Southern and eastern regions of the country are thought to be home to several active terrorist groups, including in Tebessa, the Chaambi mountains area, and south of Souk Ahras. Although northern Algeria has not experienced any major terrorist attacks over the past two years, the threat of terrorism remains significant, despite continued military efforts. This is especially true in Kabylie and other mountainous regions in the northeast, a former stronghold of al-Qa'ida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM).

Advice

Due to the risk of terrorism throughout the country, individuals are advised to maintain a high degree of vigilance, to report any suspicious objects or behavior to the relevant authorities, and to be particularly cautious when visiting sites deemed 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, festivals, etc.).

Most Western governments advise against all travel to the desert regions of central and southern Algeria, including the entire border with Libya, due to the terrorist threat. Traveling to some wilayas of northern Algeria (Tizi Ouzou, Bouïra, Boumerdès, Béjaïa, Jijel, Skikda, Tébessa, Constantine, El Oued, or Aurès Mountains) is also advised against. Only a few large cities (Algiers, Oran, and Tlemncen) should be considered relatively safe thanks to a heavy security presence.

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