Friday, June 7, 2013

Libya: Updated Travel Warning Issued by US Department of State

COMMENT: The US Department of State warns US citizens of the risks of traveling to Libya and strongly advises against ALL but essential travel to Tripoli and all travel to Benghazi, Bani Walid, and southern Libya, including border areas and the regions of Sabha and Kufra. Because of ongoing instability and violence, the Department’s ability to provide consular services to US citizens in these regions of Libya is extremely limited. This Travel Warning supersedes the Travel Warning dated May 9, 2013. 

On May 8, 2013, the Department of State ordered the departure of a limited number of US government personnel from Libya following the seizure of Libyan government buildings in Tripoli by armed groups in a dispute over a law regarding officials of the former regime. Since that time, tensions have eased, and therefore; as of June 6, the US Embassy in Libya is no longer on ordered departure status, but remains an unaccompanied post due to security concerns.   

The security situation in Libya remains unpredictable. Sporadic episodes of civil unrest have occurred throughout the country. US citizens should avoid areas of demonstrations and exercise caution if in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations, as even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence. US citizens traveling to, or remaining in, Libya should use caution and limit nonessential travel within the country, make their own contingency emergency plans, and maintain security awareness at all times. 

For the full text of the travel warning, see:
http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/tw/tw_5992