JERUSALEM (JTA) – Israel’s Counter Terrorism Bureau in its spring travel warnings called on Israelis to stay away from more than 40 countries.
Recent terrorist attacks by Islamic extremists in Belgium, Canada, Australia, France and Denmark raise concerns over additional attacks against Western targets, including Israeli and Jewish targets, by veterans of the fighting in Syria and Iraq who are affiliated with Global Jihad, including Islamic State, and by local elements inspired by the terrorist organizations, the bureau said in a statement.
The bureau warned Israelis to avoid visits to Syria, Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Yemen and Saudi Arabia – it is illegal for Israelis to travel to those countries – as well as Afghanistan, Libya, Sudan, Somalia, Burkina-Faso, Indonesia, Ivory Coast, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritania, Pakistan and Togo, due to concrete threats. Any Israelis in those countries now were advised to leave immediately.
“The global terrorist campaign by Iran and Hezbollah continues to threaten Israeli and Jewish targets around the world, especially tourists and Jewish symbols (rabbis, community leaders, Chabad houses),” the bureau said.
The bureau also said there are high concrete threats regarding travel to Algeria, Djibouti, Mauritania and Tunisia, and basic concrete threats regarding travel to Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. There are continuing potential threats regarding travel to Azerbaijan, Turkey, Morocco, Oman, Kenya and Nigeria, according to the bureau, which recommends that the Israeli public avoid non-essential visits to these countries.
There are very high concrete threats regarding travel to southern Thailand, the southern Philippines island of Mindanao, Chechnya, the northern India state of Jammu and Kashmir, the Sinai Peninsula and northern Nigeria. A severe travel warning remains in effect for the Sinai Peninsula, according to the bureau.
The bureau said there also is a high concrete threat regarding travel to eastern Senegal.
The warnings were issued ahead of the spring holidays in Israel, including Passover and Independence Days, when many Israelis travel abroad. The warnings are based on “solid and reliable information, which reflect tangible threats, and which are based on the intelligence picture for the given period,” the bureau said.