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Sunday 22 October 2023

Tourists warned they could be terror targets

The US wants to be the world's policeman.

But the global arbiter of what is good and evil - and the country that is what war more often than any other - has admitted that its politics put its citizens at increased risk around the globe.

The US State Department this weekend issued a global travel warning for all Americans abroad.

It advised all US nationals around the world to "exercise increased caution because of tensions in various locations around the world".

Increased tensions have the potential for ‘terrorist attacks, demonstrations or violent actions against US citizens and interests, it said.

So look out loud, gum-chewing, baseball hats on backwards types. You are easy to spot.

The warning came as a response to the ongoing conflict between Israel and terrorist group Hamas.

State Department spokesperson Matt Miller said: “We take a number of factors into consideration when making the determination.

“It’s not necessarily any one thing but everything that we’re watching around the world."

Travel advisories for Lebanon and Israel are currently at the highest level, with non-essential government staff and their families are asked to leave, Travel Mole reports.

Global travel warnings are fairly rare but the State Department issued a similar worldwide advisory last year when al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri was killed.

US citizens are advised to "stay alert in locations frequented by tourists".

Australians - whose government has taken a strong pro-Israel stance - have been issued with a similar warning from the government's SmartTraveller app. 

"We continue to advise reconsider your need to travel to Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories overall due to the volatile security situation, including the threat of terrorism, armed conflict and civil unrest," it said over the weekend.

"We continue to advise do not travel to Gaza, border areas with Gaza and border areas with Lebanon closed by Israeli authorities. We now also advise do not travel to the West Bank (excluding East Jerusalem) due to the volatile security situation.

"The situation is highly challenging and rapidly changing. Australians who want to leave are strongly encouraged to take the first available option. Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion International Airport remains open and commercial flights are available."

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