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Israelis should stay away from Iraq, the National Security Council's Counter-Terrorism Division said Tuesday, in light of what it said was the increasing number of Israelis visiting the war-torn country.
The division said in a statement: "In light of the increasing number of Israelis visiting Iraq and given the severity of the threats to them there, the National Security Council Counter-Terrorism Division wishes to remind the Israeli public that: A) Visiting Iraq is very dangerous; the lives of Israelis in Iraq are at tangible risk; and B) Israeli law bans Israeli citizens from visiting Iraq; visiting Iraq is a criminal offense."
The division's Elkana Har Nof said the warning was reissued because it had come to the council's attention that there were "dozens" of Israelis, both Jews and Arabs, currently in Iraq on business.
He said the Israelis there were "putting their lives at risk."
Har Nof said there were only one or two cases that he was aware of where Israelis went there "in search of their roots." There "are many ways" for Israelis to get into the country, with some using foreign passports, and others going overland through countries like Turkey, he said.