On the afternoon (local time) of Friday, July 13, demonstrators stormed Al Najaf International Airport (NJF) in Najaf province. According to reports, the rioters have blocked access to and from the airport terminal. The protest is likely related to a wave of demonstrations that broke out nationwide on Friday, July 6, over ongoing electricity shortages. Anticipate a heightened security presence and transportation disruptions in the vicinity of the airport, as well as likely flight disruptions at NJF. Clashes between security forces and protesters cannot be ruled out.
Individuals in Iraq are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid all protests and large public gatherings as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments. Travelers flying to or from NJF should contact their airline for additional information.
The security environment in Iraq remains complex. Although travel is possible in some areas with proper security protocols in place, other areas should be considered strictly off-limits. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to all travel.