The United States Government on Thursday October 27, ordered its non-emergency diplomatic staff and their families to leave Abuja immediately.
The US Mission in Nigeria cited “heightened risk of terrorist attacks” as reason for the directive in its latest travel advisory.
The US Department of State had on Tuesday October 25th 2023 approved the departure of Abuja Embassy staff and family.
The US Department of State did not specify the exact location of the threat, but its country summary for Nigeria warns that “terrorists may attack with little or no warning,” targeting malls, markets, hotels, restaurants, bars or schools.
The statement reads: “The Travel Advisory for Nigeria has been updated due to a heightened risk of terrorist attacks in Abuja. We recommend U.S. citizens do not travel to Abuja at this time. In addition, on October 27, 2022, the Department ordered the departure of family members of U.S. government employees from Abuja due to heightened risk of terrorist attacks, following on the October 25 authorization of departure of non-emergency U.S. government employees and family members from Abuja due to heightened risk of terrorist attacks”.
“U.S. citizens should consider departing Abuja using available commercial options. U.S. citizens who wish to depart but are unable to secure commercial options to do so can contact the U.S. Consulate in Lagos at LagosFM@state.gov for assistance”.
“The U.S. Embassy Abuja is only able to provide emergency assistance to U.S. citizens in Abuja. The U.S. Consulate General in Lagos is providing all routine and emergency services to U.S. citizens in Nigeria. U.S. Citizens in Nigeria who require assistance should contact LagosACS@state.gov or +234 1 460 3410”.
If you decide to travel to Nigeria:
Carry proper identification, including a U.S. passport with a current Nigerian visa, if needed.
Use caution when walking or driving at night.
Keep a low profile.
Review travel routes and times to vary your predictability.
Monitor local media for breaking events and be prepared to adjust your plans.
Be aware of your surroundings.
Stay alert in locations frequented by Westerners.
Avoid demonstrations and large political gatherings.
Review your personal security plans.
Have evacuation plans that do not rely on U.S. government assistance.
Establish a “proof of life” protocol with your loved ones, so that if you are taken hostage, your loved ones know specific questions (and answers) to ask the hostage-takers to be sure that you are alive (and to rule out a hoax).
Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
Obtain comprehensive medical insurance that includes medical evacuation.
Lagos Post Online,
Lagos Post is an online publication that seeks to provide fair, unbiased, credible, balanced and useful information about Corporate Organisations, Governments and the General Public by breaking news in Business, Politics, Arts, Entertainment, Culture, and Sports in Nigeria, Africa and the World. As a global news portal, we continually stand for responsible journalism and sound media practice.