Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

U.S. advisory to citizens visiting India

U.S. advisory to citizens visiting India

Officials insisted the change was to make advice clearer to United States citizens that plan to travel.

Under the new system, every country has a travel advisory and is placed in one of these four categories.

The US govt. said that the new travel advisory has been issued in order to provide citizens with clear, timely, and reliable safety and security information worldwide.

Regarding the ranking of Pakistan on Level 3, asking Americans to reconsider travelling to the nation, the State Department cited the presence of terrorism, specifically advising against travel to Balochistan province, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) province, and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). "In the past, there have been large-scale terrorist attacks resulting in hundreds of casualties", the State Department advisory said.

U.S. citizens are simply advised to exercise increased caution in Uganda due to crime.

"Do not travel to the state of Jammu and Kashmir (except the eastern Ladakh region and its capital, Leh) due to terrorism and civil unrest, and within 10 km of the India-Pakistan border due to the potential for armed conflict", the advisory said.

In September, the agency stated in a travel warning that, "numerous U.S. Embassy Havana employees have been targeted in specific attacks", suffering "significant injuries as a effect of these attacks". "These are simply based on our assessment of the security situation, and what we need to tell U.S. citizens who might be traveling or living in that country".

"In the process of that review, we will look very carefully and we wanted to make sure that we were being consistent across the globe as to how we were assessing and ranking countries." she added. "Some areas have increased risk", the advisory said.

That process found that members of the public were confused by the current system and unsure how to respond to the various alerts and warnings issued by the State Department.

"Terrorists have targeted U.S. diplomats and diplomatic facilities in the past, and evidence suggests they continue to do so", says the State Department. "Conditions in other countries may differ from those in the United States and may change at any time", the State Department's webpage notes in its fact sheet. Turkey, Russia and Venezuela are considered Level Three.

Now every country has a travel advisory based on this system, which has replaced all the previous such advisories.

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