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State Department makes changes to travel warning system

12 January, 2018, 00:36 | Author: Priscilla Morrison
  • Tijuana Mexico. U.S.                      Justin Sullivan

The U.S. State Department updated its warning system and how it conveys information about the risks of traveling to other countries, in a bid to make these warnings easier to understand.

Also new in the travel advisory system, travelers going to Mexico can use a separate color-coded map of the country that breaks down each Mexican state with warnings specific to those areas. There is some risk in any global travel. Azerbaijan has been included in the list of countries where the USA citizens are recommended to exercise increased caution due to the increased risk of terrorism.

Level four means do not travel due to the greater likelihood of life-threatening risks.

Colima, Guerrero, Michoacán, Sinaloa and Tamaulipas have all been classified as a level 4 risk, the highest on the scale. The states mentioned include "eastern Maharashtra and northern Telangana through western West Bengal" as well as " rural parts of Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand and... the borders of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, and Odisha".

That puts them at the same levels as conflict-ridden countries such as Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria.

Women have been discouraged from traveling alone as rape is "one of the fastest growing crimes in India".




Explaining the new U.S. system, State Department official Michelle Bernier-Toth said that "over the years, we've come to recognize that sometimes our various documents were not readily understood". It is also tells citizens to "reconsider travel to Nairobi neighborhood of Eastleigh at all times and Old Town in Mombasa at night due to crime".

The U.S. State Department is warning tourists to "completely avoid" five states in Mexico because of rampant criminal and gang activity.

The State Department has announced a major change to how it issues travel advisories. "These are simply based on our assessment of the security situation, and what we need to tell United States citizens who might be traveling or living in that country".

A statement from the Secretary of Tourism of Mexico (Sectur) reported that 80 percent of the more popular foreign tourist destinations such as Cancun, Riviera Maya, Los Cabos, Puerto Vallarta-Riviera Nayari and Mexico City were not included in the travel advisory.

Officials insisted the change was to make advice clearer to United States citizens that plan to travel. Currently, countries like Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy and Spain are listed here. Countries in this list include Russian Federation and Turkey.

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