United States citizens travelling abroad have been urged to “exercise increased caution” due to the heightened global tensions arising from Hamas’ attack on Israel and the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict.
In a recent advisory, the State Department issued a “worldwide caution” alert, stating, “Due to increased tensions in various locations around the world, and the potential for terrorist attacks, demonstrations, or violence against U.S. citizens and interests, the Department of State advises U.S. citizens overseas to exercise increased caution.”
Furthermore, the department advised Americans abroad to remain vigilant in popular tourist destinations.
Among African countries, Niger, Libya, South Sudan, Mali, Burkina Faso, and the Central African Republic received the highest travel alerts (Do not travel).
Nigeria was placed in the third tier of caution alerts (Reconsider travel), with the State Department highlighting Adamawa, Bauchi, Kogi, Yobe, Borno, Zamfara, Sokoto, Kaduna, Gombe, Kano, and Katsina as areas of concern.
The last time the department issued such a warning was in August 2022, following a counterterrorism strike in Afghanistan that killed al-Qaida leader Ayman al-Zawahiri.
During that time, U.S. officials cautioned that “supporters of al-Qa’ida, or its affiliated terrorist organizations, may seek to attack U.S. facilities, personnel, or citizens.”
Separately, sources familiar with the matter and documents reviewed by ABC News reveal that the State Department has instructed its embassies and consulates worldwide to conduct emergency security reviews in response to ongoing protests sparked by the conflict.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken has also directed personnel to assess whether embassies should issue alerts to Americans in their respective countries regarding potential threats posed by the demonstrations, as many have already done.
While some posts have requested modifications to their operations due to security concerns, no additional embassies have, thus far, requested authorized departure or full evacuation.