US warns citizens against travel to Lebanon

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Beirut, Jan 6 (IANS) The US Embassy in Beirut Sunday warned its citizens not to travel to Lebanon, urging those already in the country to avoid hotels, shopping centres and public events.

“Following recent bombings in Beirut and other instances of violence that have occurred in Lebanon in recent months, the US government strongly urges US citizens in Lebanon to exercise extreme caution and to avoid hotels, western-style shopping centres, including western-style grocery chain stores, and any public or social events where US citizens normally congregate,” Xinhua quoted the embassy as saying in a message on Twitter.

It added: “These sites are likely targets for terrorist attacks for at least in the near term.” It urged “all US citizens to avoid travel to Lebanon due to safety and security concerns”.

It said that US citizens living and working in Lebanon should understand that they accept risks in remaining and should carefully consider those risks,” pointing out that “the ability of US government personnel to reach travellers to provide emergency services may be limited.”

The US State Department has already warned US citizens on several occasions to avoid all travel to Lebanon and recommended those in the country to make plans to leave.

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