The United States Department of State has issued travel warnings to its citizens of the security risks inherent in and within Nigeria. They have told their citizens that it is risky to travel to Nigeria because of the unrest in the North.
The warning dated 9th February 2017, recommends that the citizens of the United States should avoid all but essential travel to Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Kano, and Yobe, due to the unpredictable security situation in the North-East. They believe Nigeria is a risky for its citizens to travel too.
They believe that the safety of their citizens cannot be guaranteed if they travel to Nigeria especially the North-East part of the country.
This follows a security warning issued by the United States embassy on Tuesday, January 24, 2017, advising citizens and officials to show extra consideration for their personal safety and security as they travel within Nigeria.
These directives came due to the government’s plans to shut down the Nnamdi Azikwe Airport for repairs and the re-routing of air traffic from that airport to the Kaduna airport, as well as the international airports in Lagos, Kano and Port Harcourt.
The Department of State’s travel warning says “United States citizens should be watchful at public gatherings and locations frequented by foreigners. They shouldn’t stay long in places where there are a lot of foreigners. The directives also states that markets, hotels, restaurants, bars, and places of worship are liable targets for terrorist attacks”.
It also adds that the poor state of transport infrastructure in the country means that the US embassy finds it difficult to provide consular services in the aforementioned risk areas, advising that “All U.S. citizens should have evacuation plans that do not solely rely on U.S. government assistance”.
The document issued by the Embassy shows that the recent warning is driven by heightened insecurity in the North of the country, mostly as a direct result of the activities of Boko Haram.