NSC refreshes travel warning before Holidays

In a travel warning issued this week ahead of the High Holiday season, the National Security Council's counterterrorism division called on Israelis to immediately leave Jordan and Egypt, especially Sinai, because of concrete terrorist threats. The other areas Israelis were called upon to leave immediately were Sudan, Syria, Lebanon, Somalia, Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan, Iran, Kashmir in northern India, Mindanao in the southern Philippines and Chechnya in southern Russia. The counterterrorism division updates its travel warnings twice a year - before Rosh Hashana and Pessah. The updated warning is identical to the one issued in March. The countries with the next highest level of warning - which Israelis were called upon to "avoid visiting and to leave the country as soon as possible" - were Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Djibouti, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, northern Nigeria and southern Thailand. In the "avoid visiting" category were Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Tunisia, Qatar, Morocco, Chad, Bahrain and Kenya. And the areas with the least severe warning - where Israelis were recommended to "postpone nonessential travel" - were Libya, Oman, Tajikistan, Nigeria, Bangladesh, southeastern Turkey near the borders with Iran and Iraq, and Khao San Road and vicinity in Bangkok. Turkey, a favorite destination for Israelis, was place on a list of countries that included Thailand, the Philippines and Uzbekistan, where the counterterrorism division said Israelis should be "especially cautious," even though there was no general warning against travel there. The advisory also warned against Hizbullah attempts to kidnap Israelis overseas, and asked Israelis to reject enticing or unexpected business offers to go abroad, and unexpected gifts or invitations from unfamiliar or suspicious people.