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U.S. Department of State
Bureau of Consular Affairs
Washington, DC 20520

Consular Information Sheet

 


Please click on this link to read important information you should see before you travel abroad

This information is current as of today,

Israel, the West Bank and Gaza

Americans planning travel to Israel, the West Bank and Gaza should read Test Israel Abduction PageAvian Flu Fact SheetTravel Warning for Israel, the West Bank and Gaza  and Worldwide Caution  Public Announcement available on the Department of State web site at http://travel.state.gov

February 08, 2006

COUNTRY DESCRIPTION:  The State of Israel is a parliamentary democracy with a modern economy.  Tourist facilities are widely available.  Travelers may visit the website of the Israeli Ministry of Tourism for tourist information at http://www.goisrael.com/.  Israel occupied the West Bank, Gaza Strip, Golan Heights, and East Jerusalem as a result of the 1967 War.  Pursuant to negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, the Palestinian Authority exercises jurisdiction over the Gaza Strip and parts of the West Bank.  Palestinian Authority police are responsible for keeping order in those areas, and the Palestinian Authority exercises a range of civil functions there.  The division of responsibilities and jurisdiction in the West Bank between Israel and the Palestinian Authority is complex.  Definitive information on entry, customs requirements, arrests, and other matters in the West Bank and Gaza is subject to change without prior notice or may not be available.  Read the Department of State Background Notes on Israel, the West Bank and Gaza for additional information.

ENTRY/EXIT REQUIREMENTS:  The general entry and exit requirements for Americans traveling to Israel, the West Bank and Gaza are listed below.  Palestinian Americans may be subject to special restrictions.  Palestinian Americans are advised to read all sections of this sheet very carefully for special regulations that may affect their travel.

Israel:  A passport valid for six months beyond duration of stay, an onward or return ticket, and proof of sufficient funds are required for entry.  A no-charge, three-month visa may be issued upon arrival and may be renewed.  Travelers carrying official or diplomatic U.S. passports must obtain visas from an Israeli embassy or consulate prior to arrival in Israel.  Anyone who has been refused entry or experienced difficulties with his/her status during a previous visit, or who has overstayed the authorized duration of a previous visit or otherwise violated the terms of their admission to Israel should consult the Israeli Embassy or nearest Israeli Consulate before attempting to return to Israel.  Anyone seeking returning resident status must obtain permission from Israeli authorities before traveling.  Occasionally, the Government of Israel has declined to admit individual American citizens or groups who have expressed sympathy with the Palestinian cause, sought to meet with Palestinian officials, or intended to travel to the West Bank or the Gaza Strip.  Persons who, upon arrival, seek immigration court hearings to contest decisions that they not be permitted to enter Israel may be detained for prolonged periods while waiting for such hearings to be convened.

West Bank and Gaza:   Except during periods of heightened security restrictions, most U.S. citizens may enter and exit the West Bank on a U.S. passport, but only with an Israeli entry stamp placed in the passport at the port of entry.  U.S. citizens who hold a Palestinian ID number or whom Israel considers to have residency status in the West Bank or Gaza are advised to please read the next section entitled “Palestinian Americans” very carefully. 

The Government of Israel requires persons wishing to enter Gaza via the Erez checkpoint to have prior written permission from the Government of Israel.  U.S. citizens planning on traveling to Gaza should submit a request for entry in person at the Erez Border Crossing at least five working days in advance of their visit.  With the exception of the Rafah crossing, it is not necessary to obtain a visitor's permit from the Palestinian Authority to travel to Gaza.  From November 2005 until November 2006, the Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt will be open only for Palestinian ID cardholders and for persons in the specific excepted categories of diplomats, foreign investors, foreign representatives of recognized international organizations and humanitarian cases.  Travelers planning to use one of these exceptions need to apply to the Palestinian Authority at least two days in advance of their planned entry through Rafah.  Private vehicles may not cross from Israel into Gaza, or from Gaza into Israel, and may be stopped at checkpoints entering or leaving the West Bank.  The Gaza Airport remains closed as a result of serious damage sustained in fighting during the past five years.

Palestinian Americans:   American citizens of Palestinian origin may be considered by Israeli authorities to be residents of the West Bank or Gaza, especially if they were issued a Palestinian ID number or if, as minors, they were registered in either of their parents’ Palestinian IDs.  Any American citizen whom Israel considers to be a resident of the West Bank or Gaza is required by Israel to hold a valid Palestinian passport to enter or leave the West Bank or Gaza via Israel or the Allenby Bridge border crossing.  American citizens in this category who arrive without a Palestinian passport will generally be granted permission to travel to the West Bank or Gaza to obtain one, but may only be allowed to depart via Israel on a Palestinian passport rather than on their U.S. passport. 

Persons carrying a Palestinian Authority identity number will not be permitted to enter Israel through Ben Gurion International Airport if their last departure was through the Allenby Bridge or Rafah border crossings.  Such persons who arrive at Ben Gurion will be turned back by Israeli officials and required to re-enter through Allenby or Rafah.  Anyone who last departed Israel through Ben Gurion Airport may return via the airport or any border crossing.

During periods of heightened security restrictions, Palestinian Americans with residency status in the West Bank or Gaza may not be allowed to enter or exit Gaza or the West Bank, even if using their American passports.  Persons with residency status in the West Bank or Gaza must apply to the Government of Israel for a transit permit in order to depart via Ben Gurion Airport.  Applications for such permits must be submitted at least three Israeli working days prior to departure, although Israeli authorities may take considerably longer to render a decision.  Except in humanitarian or special interest cases, Israeli authorities are unlikely to grant this permit.  In this event, Palestinian Americans must exit the West Bank via the crossing at Allenby Bridge and from Gaza via the Rafah crossing.  Specific questions may be addressed to the nearest Israeli Embassy or Consulate or, within Israel, the nearest office of the Ministry of the Interior.

Israel-Jordan Crossings:   International crossing points between Israel and Jordan are the Arava crossing (Wadi al-'Arabah) in the south, near Eilat, and the Jordan River crossing (Sheikh Hussein Bridge) in the north, near Beit Shean.  American citizens using these two crossing points to enter either Israel or Jordan need not obtain prior visas, but will have to pay the following fees: 

Jordan River Crossing:   Israeli exit fee of 68 NIS/US $15, Jordanian entry fee 5 Jordanian dinars
Arava crossing: exit fee of 68 NIS/US $15, entry fee of 5 Jordanian dinars

Visas should be obtained in advance for those wanting to cross the Allenby Bridge between Jordan and the West Bank.  (Note:   The Government of Israel requires that Palestinian Americans with residency status in the West Bank enter Jordan via the Allenby Bridge).  Procedures for all three crossings into Jordan are subject to frequent changes.  Persons with residency status in the West Bank or Gaza seeking to cross the Allenby Bridge from Jordan should contact the Jordanian authorities for information concerning special clearance procedures for Palestinian ID holders before traveling to the bridge.  Palestinian Americans who depart Israel, the West Bank or Gaza via the Allenby Bridge may encounter lengthy processing times at the bridge.  See our Foreign Entry Requirements brochure for more information on Israel, the West Bank and Gaza and other countries.  Visit the Embassy of Israel website at: http://www.israelemb.org/ for the most current visa information. 

Re-Entry to the West Bank:  The Government of Israel is increasingly denying re-entry to the West Bank by American citizens who work and/or reside there with temporary visas.  American citizens, including aid workers, religious workers, and property owners who left the West Bank so they could renew entry visas by return from Jordan or other countries are increasingly being denied re-entry by Israeli authorities, who consider them "repeat visitors".  American citizens who also hold Palestinian IDs are permitted to enter, because they are considered by Israeli authorities to be legal residents of the Palestinian Territories; but they are subject to other restrictions, described elsewhere in this Consular Information Sheet. 

Find more information about Entry and Exit Requirements pertaining to dual nationality and the prevention of international child abduction.  Please refer to our Customs Information to learn more about customs regulations.

SAFETY AND SECURITY: Israel has strict security measures that may affect visitors.  Prolonged questioning and detailed searches may take place at the time of entry and/or departure at all points of entry to Israel, including entry from the West Bank and Gaza.  Travelers with Arabic surnames, those who ask that Israeli stamps not be entered into their passports, and unaccompanied female travelers have been delayed and subjected to close scrutiny at points of entry.  Security-related delays or obstacles in bringing in or departing with cameras or electronic equipment are not unusual.  Laptop computers and other electronic equipment have been confiscated from travelers leaving Israel from Ben Gurion Airport during security checks.  While most are returned prior to departure, some equipment has been retained by the authorities for lengthy periods, damaged, destroyed or lost as a result.  Americans who have had personal property damaged due to security procedures at Ben Gurion can contact the Commissioner of Complaints at the airport for redress.  During searches and questioning, Israeli authorities have denied American citizens access to U.S. consular officers, lawyers, or family members.  Palestinian Americans have been arrested on suspicion of security crimes when attempting to enter or leave Israel, the West Bank and Gaza.  The Israeli National Police have monitored, arrested and deported members of religious groups who they believe intended to commit violent or disruptive acts in Israel.

For the latest security information, Americans traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department’s Internet web site, where the current Travel Warning for Israel, the West Bank and Gaza , Worldwide Caution Public Announcement, Middle East and North Africa Public Announcement, and other Travel Warnings and Public Announcements can be found.

Up-to-date information on safety and security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the U.S., or for callers outside the U.S. and Canada, a regular toll-line at 1-202-501-4444.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).

The Department of State urges American citizens to take responsibility for their own personal security while traveling overseas.  For general information about appropriate measures that travelers can take to protect themselves in an overseas environment, see the Department of State’s pamphlet A Safe Trip Abroad.

Terrorism:  U.S. citizens, including tourists, students, residents, and U.S. mission personnel, have been injured or killed in terrorist actions in Israel, Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza.  Attacks have occurred in highly frequented shopping and pedestrian areas and on public buses.  U.S. Embassy and Consulate General American employees and their families are prohibited from using public buses and trains.  American citizens should exercise extreme caution and avoid, to the extent possible, shopping and market areas, pedestrian walkways, malls, public buses and bus stops, trains and train stations, as well as crowded areas and demonstrations.

American citizens should use caution in the vicinity of military sites, areas frequented by off-duty soldiers, contentious religious sites, and large crowds.  Travelers should remain aware of their immediate surroundings, and should not touch any suspicious objects.

Kidnappings:  In recent months, in Gaza, armed gunmen have kidnapped foreigners, including one American.  Gunmen in negotiations with the Palestinian Authority have sometimes used such foreign hostages as bartering tools.  The threat of hostage-taking remains a primary concern for Americans and foreigners within the Gaza Strip.  Any Americans traveling to Gaza in spite of the Department of State's Travel Warning urging no travel to Gaza should register with the American Consulate General in Jerusalem prior to entry and maintain a very low profile while moving within Gaza.  They should also have the telephone numbers of the U.S. Consulate General readily at hand for rapid contact in the event of an emergency.
 
Demonstrations and Civil Unrest: In the West Bank, Gaza and Jerusalem, demonstrations or altercations can occur spontaneously and have the potential to become violent without warning.  If such disturbances occur, American visitors should leave the area immediately.  In Jerusalem's Old City, where exits are limited, American visitors should seek safe haven inside a shop or restaurant until the incident is over.  Demonstrations are particularly dangerous in areas such as checkpoints, settlements, military areas, and major thoroughfares where protesters are likely to encounter Israeli security forces.

Demonstrations by Arab Israelis in northern Israel have occurred on Land Day (March 30) and on Israeli Independence Day (date varies).  These demonstrations have generally been peaceful, but, on occasion, circumstances have prompted Embassy officials to instruct staff to avoid certain areas on those dates.

Areas of Instability:   U.S. Government personnel in Israel and Jerusalem, whether stationed there or on temporary duty, are under tight security controls, as noted below.  In addition, they occasionally may be prohibited from traveling to sections of Jerusalem and parts of Israel depending on prevailing security conditions.

Jerusalem: In Jerusalem, travelers should exercise caution at religious sites on holy days, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, and dress appropriately when visiting the Old City and ultra-orthodox Jewish neighborhoods.  Most roads into ultra-orthodox Jewish neighborhoods are blocked off on Friday nights and Saturdays.  Assaults on secular visitors, either for being in cars or for being "immodestly dressed," have occurred in these neighborhoods.  Isolated street protests and demonstrations can occur in the commercial districts of East Jerusalem (Salah Ed-Din Street and Damascus Gate areas) during periods of unrest.  U.S. Government American employees are authorized to travel to the Old City and the Mount of Olives during daylight hours only.  Although few security incidents have occurred recently within the Old City, visitors are urged to exercise caution and be aware of their surroundings at all times.  This is especially true when entering or exiting the Old City at times when the volume of pedestrian traffic could create difficulties.

There have been reports of harassment of tourists by vendors in many tourist areas of Jerusalem including, in particular, the Mount of Olives.

West Bank and Gaza:  For safety and security reason, U.S. Government American personnel and dependents are prohibited from traveling to any cities, towns or settlements in the West Bank, except for mission-essential business or other approved purposes.  Jericho, as distinct from other areas in the West Bank, is under the full security responsibility of the Palestinian Authority.  Violence in recent years has decreased markedly in Jericho and, since the PA's assumption of security responsibility for Jericho in February 2005, the level of violence there has remained low compared to other parts of the West Bank.  For limited, personal travel, U.S. government personnel and family members are permitted to travel through the West Bank, using only Routes 1 and 90, to reach the Allenby/King Hussein Bridge or the Dead Sea coast near Ein Gedi and Masada.  Each such transit requires prior notification to the Consulate General’s security office and must occur during daylight hours.  U.S. Government personnel and family members are permitted personal travel on Route 443 between Modi’in and Jerusalem during daylight hours only.   

Travel to the Gaza Strip by U.S. Government personnel is prohibited.  Under policy guidance issued by the Secretary of State, exceptions to the prohibition on Gaza travel are only for official, mission-critical travel.  Private American citizens also should avoid travel to these areas.

During periods of unrest, the Israeli Government sometimes closes off access to the West Bank and Gaza, and those areas may be placed under curfew.  All persons in areas under curfew should remain indoors or risk arrest or injury.  Americans have been killed, seriously injured, detained and deported as a result of encounters with Israeli Defense Forces operations in Gaza and the West Bank.  Travel restrictions may be imposed with little or no warning.  Strict measures have frequently been imposed following terrorist actions, and the movement of Palestinian Americans, both those with residency status in the West Bank or Gaza as well as foreign passport holders, has been severely impeded.  Due to current limitations on travel by U.S. Government employees to the West Bank and Gaza made necessary by uncertain security conditions, the ability of consular staff to offer timely assistance to American citizens in need in these areas is considerably reduced at present.

Golan Heights:   There are live land mines in many areas and visitors should walk only on established roads or trails.  Near the northern border of Israel, rocket attacks from Lebanese territory can occur without warning.

CRIME:  The crime rate is moderate in Israel, Jerusalem, and the West Bank.  Incidents of organized, violent crime, residential break-ins and petty theft have increased in Gaza since Israel’s disengagement in September. 

INFORMATION FOR VICTIMS OF CRIME:  The loss or theft abroad of a U.S. passport should be reported immediately to the local police and the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.  If you are the victim of a crime while overseas, in addition to reporting to local police, please contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate for assistance.  The Embassy/Consulate staff can, for example, assist you to find appropriate medical care, contact family members or friends and explain how funds could be transferred.  Although the investigation and prosecution of the crime is solely the responsibility of local authorities, consular officers can help you to understand the local criminal justice process and to find an attorney if needed.
 
The Government of Israel provides assistance to victims of terrorist acts.  Please use this link to the National Insurance Institute for more information: http://www.btl.gov.il/English/btl_indx.asp?name=newbenefits/hostilities.htm.

See our information on Victims of Crime

MEDICAL FACILITIES AND HEALTH INFORMATION:  Modern medical care and medicines are available in Israel.  Some hospitals in Israel and most hospitals in the West Bank and Gaza, however, fall below U.S. standards.  Travelers can find information in English about emergency medical facilities and after-hours pharmacies in the "Jerusalem Post" and the English language edition of "Ha'aretz" newspapers.

Information on vaccinations and other health precautions, such as safe food and water precautions and insect bite protection, may be obtained from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s hotline for international travelers at 1-877-FYI-TRIP (1-877-394-8747) or via the CDC’s Internet site at http://www.cdc.gov/travel.  For information about outbreaks of infectious diseases abroad consult the World Health Organization’s (WHO) website at http://www.who.int/en.  Also, please see the Department of State’s Avian Flu Fact Sheet.  Further health information for travelers is available at http://www.who.int/ith.

MEDICAL INSURANCE:  The Department of State strongly urges Americans to consult with their medical insurance company prior to traveling abroad to confirm whether their policy applies overseas and whether it will cover emergency expenses such as a medical evacuation.  Please see our information on medical insurance overseas for more information.

TRAFFIC SAFETY AND ROAD CONDITIONS:  While in a foreign country, U.S. citizens may encounter road conditions that differ significantly from those in the United States.  The information below concerning Israel, the West Bank and Gaza is provided for general reference only, and may not be totally accurate in a particular location or circumstance.

Israeli roads and highways tend to be crowded, especially in urban areas.  Aggressive driving is a serious problem and few drivers maintain safe following distances.  Drivers should use caution, as Israel has an extremely high rate of fatality from automobile accidents.

U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv and Consulate General Jerusalem American employees and their families have been prohibited from using public buses (please review the earlier section entitled "Terrorism.")

The Government of Israel requires that all passenger car occupants use their seat belts at all times and that headlights be used during all intercity travel, both day and night, during winter.  Beginning January 1, 2006, all drivers will be required to carry florescent vests in the car with them at all times, and they will be required to wear these vests whenever they get out of their cars to make repairs, change tires, etc.  If a vehicle is stopped for a traffic violation and it does not have a florescent vest, the driver will be fined.  These vests can be purchased for a nominal price in all local gas stations.

West Bank and Gaza: Crowded roads and aggressive driving are common in the West Bank and Gaza.  During periods of heightened tensions, cars with Israeli license plates have been stoned and fired upon.  Emergency services may be delayed by the need for Palestinian authorities to coordinate with Israeli officials.  Seat belt use is required outside of cities and drivers may not drink alcohol.  Individuals involved in accidents resulting in death or injury, may be detained by police pending an investigation.

Please refer to our Road Safety page for more information.  Visit the website of the Israeli Ministry of Tourism office and national authority responsible for road safety at http://www.goisrael.com.

AVIATION SAFETY OVERSIGHT:  The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the Government of Israel's Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with ICAO international aviation safety standards for oversight of Israel's air carrier operations.  For more information, travelers may visit the FAA’s Internet web site at http://www.faa.gov/safety/programs_initiatives/oversight/iasa

SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES:   Video cameras and other electronic items must be declared upon entry to Israel and are sometimes seized by Israeli customs and security officials and returned either damaged and/or after a lengthy delay.  It is advisable to contact the Embassy of Israel in Washington or one of Israel’s consulates in the United States for specific information regarding customs requirements.  Definitive information on customs requirements for the Palestinian Authority is not available.  Please see our information on customs regulations .

Arrests and Detentions:   U.S. citizens arrested by the Israeli National Police (INP) in Israel and charged with crimes are entitled to legal representation and consular notification and visitation.  In many cases, there are significant delays between the time of arrest and the time when the INP notifies the Embassy or Consulate General and grants consular access.  This procedure may be expedited if the arrested American shows a U.S. passport to the police, or asks the police to contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate General.

U.S. citizens arrested by the Israeli Security Police for security offenses, and U.S. citizens arrested in the West Bank or Gaza for criminal or security offenses may be prevented from communicating with lawyers, family members, or consular officers for lengthy periods.  The U.S. Consulate General and the Embassy are often not notified of such arrests, or are not notified in a timely manner.  Consular access to the arrested individual is frequently delayed.  U.S. citizens have been subject to mistreatment during interrogation and pressured to sign statements in Hebrew that have not been translated.  Under local law they may be detained for up to six months at a time without charges.  Youths over the age of 14 have been detained and tried as adults.  When access to a detained American citizen is denied or delayed, the U.S. Government formally protests the lack of consular access to the Israeli Government.  The U.S. Government also will protest any mistreatment to the relevant authorities.

U.S. citizens arrested by the Palestinian Authority (PA) Security Forces in the West Bank or Gaza for crimes are entitled to legal representation and consular notification and access.  The PA Security Forces normally notify the Consulate General of non-security related arrests for criminal offenses within two days of arrest, and consular access is normally granted within four days.  This procedure may be expedited if the arrested American shows a U.S. passport to the police, or asks the police to contact the U.S.  Consulate General.

U.S. citizens arrested by the PA Security Forces in the West Bank or Gaza for security offenses may be prevented from communicating with lawyers, family members, or consular officers for lengthy periods.  In addition, they may be held in custody for protracted periods without formal charges or before being taken in front of a judge for an arrest extension.  The PA often does not notify the U.S. Consulate General of arrests in a timely manner, and consular access to arrestees is occasionally delayed. 

Dual Nationality:   Israeli citizens naturalized in the United States retain their Israeli citizenship, and children born in the United States to Israeli parents usually acquire both U.S. and Israeli nationality at birth.  Israeli citizens, including dual nationals, are subject to Israeli laws requiring service in Israel's armed forces, as well as other laws pertaining to passports and nationality.  U.S.-Israeli dual nationals of military age who do not wish to serve in the Israeli armed forces should contact the Israeli Embassy in Washington, D.C. to learn more about an exemption or deferment from Israeli military service before going to Israel.  Without this exemption or deferment document, they may not be able to leave Israel without completing military service or may be subject to criminal penalties for failure to serve.  Israeli citizens, including dual nationals, must enter and depart Israel on their Israeli passports, and Israeli authorities may require persons whom they consider to have acquired Israeli nationality at birth to obtain an Israeli passport prior to departing Israel, even if said persons are neither aware of their Israeli nationality nor have any desire to maintain it.

Bearers of Palestinian passports or identity numbers who have become naturalized United States citizens are considered by the Israeli government to retain their Palestinian nationality, and Israeli authorities will view them as Palestinians first, and as American citizens second.  Palestinian Americans whom the Government of Israel considers residents of the West Bank or Gaza may face certain travel restrictions (see Entry/Exit Requirements above).  These individuals are subject to restrictions on movement between Israel, the West Bank and Gaza and within the West Bank and Gaza that are imposed by the Israeli Government on all Palestinians for security reasons.  During periods of heightened security concerns these restrictions can be onerous.  Palestinian-American residents of Jerusalem are normally required to use laissez-passers (travel documents issued by the Israeli Government) that contain re-entry permits approved by the Israeli Ministry of Interior for any out-of-country travel.  All U.S. citizens with dual nationality must enter the U.S. on their U.S. passports.
 
Court Jurisdiction:   Civil courts in Israel actively exercise their authority to bar certain individuals, including nonresidents, from leaving the country until monetary and other legal claims against them can be resolved.  Israel's rabbinical courts exercise jurisdiction over all Jewish citizens and residents of Israel in cases of marriage, divorce, child custody and child support.  In some cases, Jewish-Americans who entered Israel as tourists have become defendants in divorce cases filed by their spouses in Israeli rabbinical courts.  These Americans have been detained in Israel for prolonged periods while the Israeli courts consider whether the individuals have sufficient ties to Israel to establish rabbinical court jurisdiction.  Jewish-American visitors should be aware that they might be subject to involuntary and prolonged stays in Israel if a case is filed against them in a rabbinical court, even if their marriage took place in the U.S. and regardless of whether their spouse is present in Israel.

CRIMINAL PENALTIES:  While in a foreign country, a U.S. citizen is subject to that country's laws and regulations, which sometimes differ significantly from those in the United States and may not afford the protections available to the individual under U.S. law.  Penalties for breaking the law can be more severe than those in the United States for similar offenses.  Persons violating Israel’s and the Palestinian Authority’s laws, even unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested or imprisoned.  Penalties for possession, use, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Israel and the Palestinian Authority are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines.  Engaging in sexual conduct with children or using or disseminating child pornography in a foreign country is a crime, prosecutable in the United States.  For more information see our information on  Criminal Penalties .

CHILDREN'S ISSUES:  For information on international adoption of children and international parental child abduction, see the Office of Children’s Issues website at Office of Children’s Issues.

REGISTRATION/EMBASSY AND CONSULATE LOCATIONS:  Americans living or traveling in Israel, the West Bank or Gaza are encouraged to register with the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv or the Consulate General in Jerusalem through the State Department’s travel registration website ,  and to obtain updated information on travel and security within Israel, the West Bank or Gaza.  Americans without Internet access may register directly with the U.S. Embassy or Consulate General.  By registering, American citizens make it easier for the Embassy or Consulate General to contact them in case of emergency. 

The U.S. Embassy is located at 71 Hayarkon Street in Tel Aviv.  The U.S. mailing address is Unit 7228, Box 0001, APO AE 09830.  The telephone number is (972)(3) 519-7575.  The number after 4:30 p.m. and before 8:00 a.m. local time is (972)(3) 519-7551.  The fax number is (972)(3) 516-4390.  The Embassy’s e-mail address is amctelaviv@state.gov and its Internet web page is http://telaviv.usembassy.gov.

The Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy should be contacted for information and help in the following areas:  Israel, the Golan Heights and ports of entry at Ben Gurion Airport, Haifa Port, and the northern (Jordan River) and southern (Arava) border crossings connecting Israel and Jordan.

The Consular Section of the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem is located at 27 Nablus Road in Jerusalem.  The U.S. mailing address is Unit 7228, Box 0039, APO AE 09830.  The telephone number is (972)(2) 622-7200.  The Consular Section's public telephone number for information and assistance is (972)(2) 628-7137, Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.  Messages may be left at that number at other times.  The emergencies only number after 4:30 p.m. and before 8:00 a.m. local time is (972)(2) 622-7250.  The Consular Section's fax number is (972)(2) 627-2233.  The Consulate’s e-mail address is jerusalemacs@state.gov and its Internet web page is http://jerusalem.usconsulate.gov.

The U.S. Consulate General should be contacted for information and help in the following areas:  West and East Jerusalem, the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, the Allenby Bridge border crossing connecting Jordan with the West Bank, and the Rafah border crossing between Gaza and Egypt.

A U.S. Consular Agent who reports to the Embassy in Tel Aviv maintains an office in Haifa at 26 Ben Gurion Boulevard, telephone (972)(4) 853-1470.  The Consular Agent can provide both routine and emergency services in the northern part of Israel.

*   *   *

This replaces the Consular Information Sheet dated June 7, 2005, to update the sections on Entry/Exit Requirements, Safety and Security, Special Circumstances, Traffic Safety and Road Conditions and Registration/Embassy and Consulate Locations.