El Al airplanes.
(photo credit: Ronen Zvulun / Reuters)
The upcoming Rosh Hashana and Succot holidays are not only a time for apples,
honey and temporary booths, but also when terrorists will try to kill Jews
abroad, according to a travel advisory issued by the Counter-Terrorism Bureau in
the Prime Minister’s Office on Monday.
The advisory, issued every year
before the High Holy Days and Passover when Israelis travel abroad in droves,
grouped Turkey together with Azerbaijan, Nigeria and Kenya as countries where
there are continuous potential threats, and where nonessential travel should be
“The upcoming holidays, Rosh Hashana [September 5- 6] and Succot
[September 19- 27] are likely to be a target for terrorist organizations to
carry out attacks against Israel and Jewish targets abroad,” the advisory
In this way, the advisory read, the anniversary of the 2001 attack
on New York’s World Trade Center on September 11 is likely to be a preferred
date by al-Qaida and other global jihad groups to carry out
Egypt and Jordan are listed as countries where there is a
“basic” level of concrete threat, and which should be avoided. The warning
against travel to Sinai, however, is even higher, the advisory being to “avoid
all visits and to leave the region immediately.”
Other areas with that
urgent classification include parts of southern Thailand and the southern
Philippines, eastern Senegal, the Kashmir region in northern India, northern
Nigeria, parts of Kenya and Chechnya.
Israelis and Jews are advised to
leave Sudan, Somalia and Afghanistan immediately; to leave Algeria, Djibouti,
Mauritania, Libya, Tunisia, Indonesia, Burkina Faso, the Ivory Coast, Togo,
Mali, Malaysia and Pakistan as soon as possible, and to not include the United
Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Morocco and Oman in their holiday travel plans.
Travel to six countries – Iran, Lebanon, Syria,
Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Yemen – is illegal. Of the other 187 countries in the
world where Israelis are able to travel, advisories are in effect for 27 of
them, with advisories for certain regions within eight countries.
travel advisory in regard to Turkey is not new, and has been in effect since
shortly after the Mavi Marmara incident in 2010. In March 2012, this warning was
upgraded because of information that terrorists were planning an attack on
Israeli and Jewish targets in Turkey, and Israelis were advised to refrain from
all travel there. That alert was downgraded a short time later to an advisory to
refrain from “nonessential” travel.
The advisory said Hezbollah was still
trying to avenge the 2008 killing of Hezbollah commander Imad Mughniyeh, and
Iran sought to avenge the killing of three nuclear scientists.