U.S., (iexclusivenews) – The United States has issued a travel advisory for its citizens, urging them to reconsider traveling to Nigeria due to the high risk of crime, terrorism, civil unrest, kidnapping, and maritime crime.
The advisory, which was updated on January 20, 2023, categorizes some areas of Nigeria as Level 4, meaning “do not travel”, and others as Level 3, meaning “reconsider travel”.
Level 4 Areas: Terrorism and Kidnapping
The U.S. advises its nationals not to travel to Borno, Yobe, Kogi, and northern Adamawa states due to the presence of terrorist groups such as Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa (ISWA), which frequently target security forces, civilians, and humanitarian workers.
These groups also carry out kidnappings for ransom, often targeting dual national citizens who have returned to Nigeria for a visit, as well as U.S. citizens with perceived wealth.
According to the advisory, approximately two million Nigerians have been displaced as a result of the violence in Northeast Nigeria.
The U.S. also advises its nationals not to travel to Bauchi, Gombe, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Sokoto, and Zamfara states due to the high incidence of kidnapping by criminal gangs, who operate along major highways and in rural areas.
The kidnappers often demand large ransoms and may harm or kill their victims if their demands are not met.
The U.S. warns that the security situation in these states is unstable and unpredictable and that security operations to counter these threats may take place without prior notice.
Level 4 Areas: Crime and Maritime Crime
The U.S. advises its nationals not to travel to the coastal areas of Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, and Rivers states (with the exception of Port Harcourt) due to the high risk of crime, kidnapping, and maritime crime.
These areas are known for violent clashes between rival militant groups, attacks on oil and gas facilities, piracy and armed robbery at sea, and kidnappings of expatriates and locals.
The U.S. warns that the Nigerian Navy has limited capacity to respond to maritime incidents and that travelers should exercise caution when traveling by boat or ferry¹.
Level 3 Areas: Civil Unrest and Armed Gangs
The U.S. advises its nationals to reconsider traveling to Abia, Anambra, Bayelsa (non-riverine areas), Delta (non-riverine areas), Enugu, Imo, Rivers (non-riverine areas), Plateau State Taraba State Anambra State due to the potential for civil unrest and armed gangs.
These areas have experienced sporadic outbreaks of violence between ethnic groups, religious sects, political parties, and security forces.
The U.S. warns that demonstrations and protests can turn violent with little or no warning and that travelers should avoid large gatherings and monitor local media for updates.
General Precautions for Traveling to Nigeria
The U.S. advises its nationals who decide to travel to Nigeria to take the following precautions:
– Carry proper identification
– Register with the US Embassy or Consulate
– Review the Crime and Safety Reports for Nigeria
– Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter
– Review the Travel Advisory for Nigeria
– Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency
– Have a contingency plan for emergency situations
– Review the CDC website for up-to-date health information for travelers to Nigeria
I hope this information helps you to make an informed decision about traveling to Nigeria.
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