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PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENT

 

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Office of the Spokesman

This information is current as of today,

Worldwide Caution

June 06, 2006

This Public Announcement updates information on the continuing threat of terrorist actions and violence against Americans and interests overseas This supersedes the Worldwide Caution dated December 12, 2005 and expires on December 6, 2006.

The Department of State remains concerned about the continued threat of terrorist attacks, demonstrations and other violent actions against U.S. citizens and interests overseas.  Americans are reminded that demonstrations and rioting can occur with little or no warning.  The publication in the international press of caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed, for example, led to widespread demonstrations and riots in several countries.  

The March 2006 bombing near the U.S. Consulate in Karachi, Pakistan, illustrates the continuing desire of al-Qa’ida to strike official American targets.  Current information suggests that al-Qa’ida and affiliated organizations continue to plan terrorist attacks against U.S. interests in multiple regions, including Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East.  These attacks may employ a wide variety of tactics to include assassinations, kidnappings, hijackings and bombings. 

Extremists may elect to use conventional or non-conventional weapons, and target private interests or “soft targets” with a reduced security posture.     Examples of such targets include high-profile sporting events, residential areas, business offices, clubs, restaurants, hotels, places of worship, schools, public areas and locales where Americans gather in large numbers, including during holidays.  Financial or economic targets of value may also be considered as possible venues; the failed attack on the Abqaiq oil processing facility in Saudi Arabia in late February 2006 is one such example. 

In the wake of the July 2005 London bombings and the March 2004 train attacks in Madrid, Americans are reminded of the potential for terrorists to attack public transportation systems.  In addition, extremists may also select aviation and maritime services as possible targets. 

U.S. citizens are strongly encouraged to maintain a high level of vigilance, be aware of local events, and take the appropriate steps to bolster their personal security.  For additional information, please refer to “A Safe Trip Abroad” found at http://travel.state.gov.

U.S. Government facilities worldwide remain at a heightened state of alert.  These facilities may temporarily close or periodically suspend public services to assess their security posture.  In those instances, U.S. embassies and consulates will make every effort to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens.  Americans abroad are urged to monitor the local news and maintain contact with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

As the Department continues to develop information on any potential security threats to U.S. citizens overseas, it shares credible threat information through its Consular Information Program documents, available on the Internet at http://travel.state.gov. In addition to information on the Internet, travelers may obtain up-to-date information on security conditions by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the U.S. or outside the U.S. and Canada on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444.