fbpx

April 27, 2021

AMERICAS

Chile (Security threat level – 2) : On 26 April 2021, officials extended existing bans on foreign travel — aimed at limiting the spread of known variants of COVID-19 — for Chileans as well as non-resident foreigners attempting to enter Chile. Chileans are allowed to request a permit from the government for foreign travel to conduct “fundamental” business for the country, for humanitarian activities and for unspecified health-related activities. Additionally, individuals who will not return to Chile will be allowed to travel. Authorities announced that truck drivers crossing Chile’s land border will be required to present a negative result from a COVID-19 PCR test taken no more than 72 hours prior to arrival. These measures have been extended through 31 May.

Colombia (Security threat level – 4): On 27 April 2021, authorities in the city of Cali announced a new citywide lockdown due to a spike in COVID-19 cases. The lockdown will remain in effect from 2000 local time on 28 April (0100 UTC on 29 April) to 0500 local time (1000 UTC) on 2 May. During this time, residents will be required to remain at home, except for essential purposes, while the sale of alcohol and all social gatherings will be banned.

Costa Rica (Security threat level – 3): Beginning on 27 April 2021, stricter nightly coronavirus-related driving restrictions will be in effect from 2100 to 0500 local time (0300 to 1100 UTC) in response to a rising number of COVID-19 cases. Only vehicles with license plates ending with an even number can circulate on Saturdays, while those with license plates ending with an odd number can only circulate on Sundays. The measure will be in effect until 16 May. The minister of health warned that the strain on Costa Rica’s health care system may affect the availability of care for both coronavirus- and non-coronavirus-related medical issues. Costa Rica’s hospital system is expected to be overwhelmed by excess demand during the first week of May if COVID-19 cases continue to increase at current rates, according to the Central American Population Center of the University of Costa Rica.

Mexico (Security threat level – 4): As of the morning of 27 April 2021, student protesters gathered at Oaxaca International Airport (MMOX/OAX), located in the southwestern state of Oaxaca, continue to block access to the air terminal. More than 30 flights have been canceled since the blockade began on 25 April. The protesters, primarily college students studying to become teachers, are demanding that the government provide jobs for recent graduates. Oaxaca authorities stated that they have already redressed the protesters’ demands, but will not use force to clear the demonstrators.

United States (Security threat level – 2): According to reports on 27 April 2021, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security plans to postpone the upcoming requirement for U.S. residents to present a Real ID-compliant form of identification in order to board commercial aircraft. The requirement — currently set to go into effect on 1 October — is being postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has caused difficulties for residents attempting to obtain an updated identification card from state licensing departments. The federal Real ID Act in 2005 mandated that anyone seeking to travel aboard commercial aircraft or to access federal premises must obtain Real ID-compliant cards, which are issued after state governments verify documents that validate an applicant’s name, birth date and residence. The updated identification cards comprise new security features and possess a star on the upper right-hand corner.

ASIA

Cambodia (Security threat level – 3): On 26 April 2021, authorities extended existing lockdowns in the capital Phnom Penh and the neighboring city of Takmao for at least one week. Health officials also established three color-coded zones, with categorization contingent upon the number of local COVID-19 cases. In red zones – the highest level – residents are required to remain at home except for emergencies; medical workers are exempt from the order. In dark yellow zones, residents are allowed to travel after receiving permission from authorities, and a nightly 2000 to 0500 local time (1300 to 2200 UTC) curfew is in effect. In yellow zones, essential businesses are allowed to operate.

India (Security threat level – 3): On 26 April 2021, authorities in the states of Karnataka and Punjab announced plans to impose additional coronavirus-related restrictions in response to rapidly increasing case numbers. In Karnataka – for which Bengaluru (Bangalore) is the state capital – a statewide lockdown will be in effect from 2100 local time (1530 UTC) on 27 April until 12 May. Under the order, educational institutions and nonessential businesses, such as movie theaters, gyms and bars, are required to close. Religious gatherings will be suspended, and places of worship will be closed during the lockdown period. Additionally, most public transportation will remain suspended. Inter-state movement is allowed for emergency situations. Essential businesses such as grocery stores, pharmacies and banks will be allowed to operate during 0600-1000 local time. In Punjab, authorities amended the existing curfew hours to 1800-0500 local time on weekdays and from 1800 local time on Fridays until 0500 on Mondays during weekends until further notice. The previous curfew was in effect every night during 2000-0500 local time.

Philippines (Security threat level – 4): On 27 April 2021, authorities in the Philippines announced that all travelers from India will be banned from entering the Philippines from 29 April until 14 May due to the rapidly increasing rate of new COVID-19 cases in India. The ban also includes Filipino citizens as well as anyone who has been to India within 14 days prior to traveling to the Philippines. Travelers who arrive before 29 April are subject to a 14-day quarantine at a government-designated facility.

EUROPE

Turkey (Security threat level – 4): On 26 April 2021, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced a nationwide lockdown beginning on 29 April in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 in the country. Under the lockdown, travel between cities will be banned except if approved in advance by the Turkish Interior Ministry. Additionally, all nonessential businesses will close, and grocery stores will only be open Monday through Saturday. The lockdown measures will remain in place until at least 17 May.

SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA

Burkina Faso (Security threat level – 4): On 26 April 2021, armed individuals assaulted a special military wildlife unit conducting an anti-poaching patrol on a road leading to the Pama Reserve near the eastern Burkinabe town of Natiaboni. According to reports, gunmen traveling in two pickup trucks and on about a dozen motorcycles ambushed the 15-person patrol and abducted a local soldier and three Europeans — one Irish national and two Spanish nationals — accompanying the patrol. At least two soldiers were wounded in the attack, during which the assailants pilfered firearms, two military trucks and 12 motorcycles. Media reports on 27 April, citing security officials, stated that the dead bodies of the three foreigners have been found. No group has claimed responsibility for the event, although militant Islamist groups linked to al-Qaeda and Islamic State actively operate in eastern Burkina Faso.

Chad (Security threat level – 5): At approximately 0830 local time (0730 UTC) on 27 April 2021, police officers deployed tear gas to disperse demonstrators in the 9th Arrondissement of the capital N’Djamena, after they used burning tires to block the Djamena-Mondou road, which leads to the southern portion of the country. At least one protester was killed, and 27 others were injured during altercations between security forces and the demonstrators. Although the Transitional Military Council (CMT) banned protests on 26 April, the Coordination of Citizen Actions (CAC) group has organized protests — also called the Wakit tama marches — across the country in opposition to the CMT as well as against France’s support for the military council. The military has reportedly deployed armed vehicles across the capital in response to protest activities. Separately, reports indicate that another protester was killed in a similar demonstration in the city of Mondou, located approximately 475 km (295 mi) south of N’Djamena, when security personnel deployed live ammunition to disperse demonstrators.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Bahrain (Security threat level – 3): On 27 April 2021, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued an update to its travel advice for Bahrain, which reads in part as follows: “From 27 April all passengers (including transit) arriving from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh must also provide proof of a negative PCR test with a QR code, conducted not more than 48 hours before departure. For information on this and other updates please also check Bahrain’s Airport website.”

Somalia (Security threat level – 5): On 26 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Mogadishu issued a Security Alert, which reads in part as follows: “The U.S. Embassy in Somalia reminds U.S. citizens of the dangers of traveling to or residing in Somalia. The security situation has deteriorated in the last few months. March saw the highest number of improvised explosive device (IED) attacks in Mogadishu since September 2019. Mogadishu has experienced one suicide vehicle-borne IED each month in 2021 compared to six for the entirety of 2020. This apparent increased capacity to conduct suicide terrorist operations, against a backdrop of political uncertainty, has the potential to affect Somalia’s security situation with no warning.

“An ongoing political impasse in Somalia led to a significant outbreak of violence in Mogadishu between government and opposition-affiliated forces on April 25, 2021. This violence included the use of heavy weapons, including explosives. Violence such as this may occur without any ability to provide advance warning to U.S. citizens.”

To read the full text of the warning please click here.

April 26, 2021

AMERICAS

Belize (Security threat level – 3): As of 26 April 2021, members of the Belize National Teachers’ Union are planning a strike and corresponding protest in the capital Belize City. The demonstration is scheduled to begin during the morning hours at the Marion Jones Sporting Complex, located near Belize Municipal Airport (TZA), and is likely to affect traffic on Princess Margaret Drive, Freetown Road, Barack Road, Hydes Lane and Albert Street before ending at the Yarborough Green athletic park, located in the southern coastal area of Belize City. While the protest is expected to be carried out peacefully, traffic disruptions are likely. Teachers are protesting an announced 10% cut to their salaries and a three-year freeze on annual raises.

Mexico (Security threat level – 4): On 23 April 2021, Mexico City officials announced the loosening of select coronavirus-related restrictions, effective immediately. Businesses are now allowed to operate at 20% of maximum capacity and outdoor gatherings with up to 50 attendees are permitted for job training, meetings and children’s parties.

ASIA

Japan (Security threat level – 1): At approximately 0110 local time on 25 April 2021 (1610 UTC on 24 April), an eruption occurred at the Sakurajima volcano — located in Kagoshima prefecture approximately 10 km (7 mi) east of the city of Kagoshima — producing an ash cloud that reached nearly 2.5 km (1.5 mi) in altitude. The Japan Meteorological Agency issued an eruption alert for residents of Kagoshima and Tarumizu and areas near the two cities, and declared a 2.5 km exclusion zone around the volcano. The alert warns that the volcano could produce pyroclastic flows and volcanic debris. Reports indicate that ash from the eruption covered areas of Kagoshima city. There are no reports of injuries or fatalities caused by the eruption.

Malaysia / India (Security threat levels – 3 / 3): As of 26 April 2021, Malaysian authorities are set to impose a ban on flights between India and Malaysia that will go into effect on 28 April and continue until further notice. Malaysian citizens will be exempt from the travel ban, but will be required to quarantine for 14 days upon entry into Malaysia.

Singapore / India (Security threat levels – 1 / 3): As of 23 April 2021, government officials have banned all non-Singaporean and non-permanent resident travelers with recent travel history to India from entering or transiting through Singapore amid a significant surge in COVID-19 cases in India. The new measure will also apply to travelers who obtained prior approval ahead of the new travel ban. Travelers with recent travel history to India undergoing a 14-day mandatory quarantine in Singapore are required to extend their quarantine period to 21 days. Additionally, those who have recently arrived from India will be required to take a PCR test on day 14 of their quarantine.

Thailand (Security threat level – 3): On 26 April 2021, a coronavirus-related face mask mandate went into effect in the capital Bangkok. Under the order, which will remain in place until at least 9 May, face masks are required in all public areas. Violators are subject to fines of up to 20,000 baht (635 U.S. dollars).

AUSTRALASIA

Fiji (Security threat level – 2): On 26 April 2021, Fijian government officials announced new coronavirus-related measures to slow the spread of COVID-19 in the country. All international flights and domestic flights are canceled until 2 May. The ports of Lautoka and Suva will remain open to international freight shipping and cargo shipping. Additionally, the measure will place the cities of Lami, Nausori and the capital Suva under quarantine until 9 May, prohibiting residents from entering or leaving the locations, with exceptions for travel for either essential or medical purposes. Police will monitor the areas to ensure adherence to the new measures.

EUROPE

Cyprus (Security threat level – 2): On 23 April 2021, officials voted to implement a strict lockdown from 26 April to 9 May to curb the rising rate of new COVID-19 cases. A curfew will be in place from 2100 to 0500 local time (1800 to 0200 UTC). There is a ban on all gatherings and the operation of nonessential businesses. Individuals are allowed to leave their residences once per day after sending an SMS message to the government at 8998 with a Cypriot phone number, stating the reason for movement, providing their passport number or national identify card number and their home postal code. Alternatively, those without a Cypriot phone number may write down the previously outlined information and carry it on their person during their outing.

France (Security threat level – 3): At approximately 1420 local time (1220 UTC) on 23 April 2021, a man stabbed and killed a police official at a police station in Ramboillet, located approximately 45 km (30 mi) southwest of Paris. Police officers subsequently shot and killed the assailant at the scene. During the attack, the assailant reportedly shouted Islamist phrases, and authorities are investigating the event as terrorism. Authorities detained at least three other people after searching the suspect’s home. There were no other reports of injuries.

MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Iraq (Security threat level – 5): During the evening hours of 24 April 2021, a large fire broke out at Ibn al-Khatib Hospital located in the Diyala Bridge area in the southeastern area of the capital Baghdad. The fire broke out after an oxygen tank exploded in an intensive care unit housing COVID-19 patients. The blaze spread to multiple floors in the hospital before firefighters extinguished the flames. The fire killed 82 people and 110 others were injured due to the explosion and fire. Reports indicate the explosion was likely caused by a fault in the storage of oxygen tanks. Authorities are investigating the event.

Analyst Comment: The COVID-19 pandemic has increased strain on Iraq’s already fragile hospital infrastructure. Official estimates indicate that Iraq is averaging approximately 20 daily new cases per 100,000 people, although this figure is likely underestimated.

SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA

Mali (Security threat level – 5): On 25 April 2021, an unknown number of rockets struck a United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) base in the town of Tessalit, located approximately 210 km (130 mi) north of the city of Kidal. The rockets struck a barracks housing a contingent of Chadian peacekeepers. Three Chadian peacekeepers were seriously injured in the attack, according to a MINUSMA spokesman. No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Mozambique (Security threat level – 4): On 26 April 2021, Total — a French energy company — announced it will withdraw all personnel from the Afungi Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) project located in northern Cabo Delgado province. The company cited the deteriorating security situation in the province as cause to legally suspend contracts associated with the project. The announcement follows a 24 March attack on the town of Palma — located approximately 25 km (15 mi) from the Afungi LNG project — by militants of the Islamic State’s Central Africa Province.

Somalia (Security threat level – 5): On 25 April 2021, armed clashes broke out between rival military factions in the capital Mogadishu. Reports indicate that fighting is ongoing between members of the military who support President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo and those soldiers who oppose his continued rule. Reports indicate that the confrontation included gunbattles and the use of rocket-propelled grenades. There were no reports of casualties. The violence coincided with opposition protests in which demonstrators have burned tires and blocked a key road junction outside the headquarters of Somalia’s intelligence service.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Israel (Security threat level – 3): On 23 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem issued a Security Alert, which reads in part as follows: “There has been a marked increase in protests and violence in Jerusalem near the Old City, City Center, and parts of North and East Jerusalem. Recent incidents of violence include vandalism, rock throwing, broken glass, burning of vehicles, and attacks on passersby. Protests and violence may continue to occur, some with little or no warning. Embassy personnel have been advised to maintain situational awareness and avoid the area.

“The Embassy strongly encourages U.S. citizens to remain vigilant and take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness, as security incidents often take place without warning.

“The Embassy will continue to review the security situation and will provide additional information as needed.”

Mexico (Security threat level – 4): On 23 April 2021, the U.S. Consulate General in Tijuana issued a Security Alert, which reads in part as follows: “Travelers should avoid the Mexicali Valley until further notice due to the heightened possibility of violence between rival cartel factions. The boundaries of the Mexicali Valley are defined by the area east of Highway 5 (but not including Highway 5), the area south of Highway 2D/Highway 2 (but not including Highways 2D and 2), the area west of the Baja California/Sonora border, and north of La Ventana/Gulf of California in the state of Baja California.”

The full text of the alert can be read here.

Turkey (Security threat level – 4): On 24 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Ankara issued a Demonstration Alert, which reads in part as follows: “Demonstrations or protests may occur following the April 24 White House statement remembering the lives of all those who died in the Ottoman-era Armenian genocide. “As a precautionary measure, the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, the U.S. Consulate General in Istanbul, the U.S. Consulate in Adana, and the U.S. Consular Agency in Izmir will be closed for routine American Citizen and visa services on Monday, April 26 and Tuesday, April 27. U.S. citizens in need of emergency assistance should contact the closest consular section using the phone numbers and email addresses below. “U.S. citizens are advised to avoid the areas around U.S. government buildings, and exercise heightened caution in locations where Americans or foreigners may gather.”

April 23, 2021

AMERICAS

Canada / India / Pakistan (Security threat levels – 2 / 3 / 5): The Canadian transport minister declared a ban on passenger flights coming from India and Pakistan for the next 30 days, effective as of 2330 local time on 22 April 2021 (0330 UTC on 23 April). Travelers arriving in Canadian airports from India or Pakistan after transiting via a third country are now required to present proof of negative results from a COVID-19 test taken in the last location of departure. The government maintains requirements for all inbound travelers to present proof of a negative COVID-19 test that is no more than 72 hours old, take an additional test upon arrival and self-quarantine for 14 days after arriving in Canada. Those arriving aboard aircraft are required to quarantine for up to three days at a government-approved hotel until results of the COVID-19 test administered upon arrival become available and are subject to another test 10 days after arrival. An entry ban remains in place for most foreigners seeking to enter Canada; further details regarding current entry restrictions as outlined by the Canadian government are available here.

Lesser Antilles (Security threat level – 1): On 22 April 2021, authorities in Anguilla announced new restrictions following a fresh outbreak of COVID-19. The restrictions will remain in effect from 23 April to 7 May. Under the new restrictions, all persons — with the exception of essential workers — are required to stay home, except for essential purposes, such as to seek medical attention, or to purchase groceries or fuel. All nonessential businesses are closed, food establishments are restricted to takeout services only, and all public gatherings are prohibited. Additionally, the ongoing closure of Anguilla’s air and sea ports to all regular inbound passenger travel, which was scheduled to expire on 30 April, will continue until 7 May.

ASIA

Japan (Security threat level – 1): On 23 April 2021, Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga declared a state of emergency for the capital Tokyo and three western prefectures — Hyogo, Kyoto and Osaka — from 25 April to 11 May amid a rapid resurgence of COVID-19 cases. Under the state of emergency, bars and other establishments that serve alcohol will be closed, whereas restaurants that do not serve alcoholic beverages are being asked to shut down by 2000 local time (1100 UTC) daily. Department stores and other nonessential retail establishments larger than 1,000 sq. m (10,760 sq. ft) will also be required to close. Public transportation providers have been urged to suspend services earlier than usual on weekdays and to operate on a reduced schedule during weekends. In addition, companies will be encouraged to allow their employees to work from home and large sporting events will be held without spectators. Suga stated that the emergency measures are mostly aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19 during the country’s “golden week” holiday from 29 April to 5 May.

EUROPE

Sweden (Security threat level – 2): On 22 April 2021, Swedish authorities extended select nationwide coronavirus-related restrictions until 17 May due to a spike in COVID-19 cases. The restrictions had been scheduled to expire on 3 May. Under the restrictions, restaurants, bars and cafes must close by 2030 local time (1830 UTC) nightly, and no more than four people per group are allowed inside such establishments. Additionally, shops are required to limit occupancy capacity to no more than one customer per 10 sq. m (105 sq. ft).

United Kingdom / India (Security threat levels – 3 / 3): As of 0400 local time (0300 UTC) on 23 April 2021, individuals who have visited India in the previous 10 days are prohibited from entering England amid a very rapidly spreading outbreak of COVID-19 in India. U.K. citizens, Irish citizens and individuals with residency rights in the U.K. are exempt from the entry ban and will be required to undergo a mandatory 10-day quarantine at government-approved hotels at their own expense upon arrival. A full list of the 40 countries subject to England’s entry ban is available here. The Scottish government has also added India to the list of “acute risk countries” and the aforementioned ban, with the same exemptions, applies to those seeking to enter Scotland. Health officials in India registered the world’s highest daily tally of COVID-19 cases for a second consecutive day on 23 April — with more than 330,000 new cases — raising significant concerns regarding mutations of the B.1.717 coronavirus variant that was initially detected in the country in October 2020.

MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

United Arab Emirates (Security threat level – 2): On 22 April 2021, the Emirati National Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA) announced that all flights to and from India will be suspended from 25 April to 4 May due to the rapidly increasing rate of new cases of COVID-19 in India. Travelers from India will also be banned from entering the UAE for the same 10-day period, including for transit purposes.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Albania (Security threat level – 3): On 22 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Tirana issued a Security Alert, which reads in part as follows: “Location: This notice pertains to polling stations and their immediate environs, counting centers, election administration offices, and any other areas where throngs of people may have gathered.

“Event: Parliamentary elections in Albania will take place on Sunday, April 25, 2021. Voting is scheduled from 7:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m, with ballots being cast at more than 5,000 polling stations throughout every Albanian municipality. Counting will follow Sunday’s voting at the counting centers and may last for up to several days in some municipalities.

“Past elections have seen localized incidents of violence targeting election officials, those affiliated with political parties, and voting materials, which raises the prospect of possible violence or other disturbances on Sunday, April 25, or in the days following voting. Demonstrations in one city have the potential to spark additional rallies in other locations around the country. Additionally, traffic in the area of the Embassy or central areas of large cities may be impacted by rallies or protests, leading to congestion and related delays.”

Tanzania (Security threat level – 3): On 23 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Dar es Salaam issued a Weather Alert, which reads in part as follows: “Tropical Cyclone Jobo is tracking toward Tanzania and is expected to make landfall on or about April 25. The Tanzania Meteorological Authority has issued an advisory for heavy rain, strong winds, and large waves along the entire coast, including the regions of Dar es Salaam, Lindi, Mafia Island, Mtwara, Pemba, Pwani, Tanga, and Zanzibar.”

“Actions to take:

Visit the Department of State’s Hurricanes, Typhoons, and Cyclones page for more information.”

April 22, 2021

AMERICAS

Ecuador (Security threat level – 3): On 22 April 2021, authorities announced a Monday through Thursday nightly curfew from 2000 to 0500 local time (0100-1000 UTC) and total weekend curfews from 2000 local time on Fridays until 0500 local time on Mondays for 16 provinces, effective from 2000 local time on 23 April until 2359 local time on 20 May due to a spike in COVID-19 cases. The provinces affected are Azuay, Carchi, Cotopaxi, Esmereldas, El Oro, Guayas, Imbabura, Loja, Los Rios, Manabi, Santo Domingo de los Tsáchilas, Santa Elena, Sucumbíos, Tungurahua, Zamora Chinchipe and Pichincha – where the capital Quito is located. During the weekday curfew and the weekend lockdown, movement of people and vehicles will be prohibited. Essential workers and people with emergencies, such as those seeking medical attention, will be exempt from the curfew. In addition, the affected provinces’ beaches and spas will be closed to tourists and cantonal public transport will be limited to 50% of maximum occupancy. Intra and inter-provincial transport will be limited to 75% of maximum capacity, and public transportation services will be reduced by 50%. Eateries – except for food courts – will be limited to 50% capacity. Most nonessential businesses along with churches, food courts and funeral homes will be limited to 30% capacity. Meanwhile, social gatherings will be prohibited.

ASIA

India (Security threat level – 3): On 21 April 2021, the chief minister of Maharashtra state – where Mumbai is located – announced that additional coronavirus-related restrictions will be enforced statewide from 2000 local time (1430 UTC) on 22 April until 0700 local time on 1 May. Under the new orders, along with restrictions imposed on 13 April, inter-district and inter-city travel is banned except for essential purposes, public buses and all modes of private transportation are limited to 50% capacity, offices must operate at 15% capacity, and ceremonies such as weddings are limited to two hours in length, with a maximum of 25 attendees.

Laos (Security threat level – 3): On 22 April 2021, authorities imposed a coronavirus-related lockdown in the capital Vientiane until 5 May. Under the order, Vientiane residents are prohibited from leaving the city, and anyone seeking to enter are required to receive approval from authorities. Shipments of goods are exempt from the order. Residents are also required to remain at home except for essential purposes, such as traveling to purchase groceries and seek medical care or commuting to work. Furthermore, all land borders are closed during the lockdown period. Domestic flights are also reportedly suspended, while international flights are expected to continue.

Pakistan (Security threat level – 5): At approximately 2215 local time (1715 UTC) on 21 April 2021, a suicide bomber detonated a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device in the parking lot of the Serena Hotel in Quetta, the capital of Balochistan province. Authorities stated that at least five people were killed and 12 more suffered injuries and indicated that no guests were harmed. Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has claimed responsibility for the attack, stating that members of the security forces were its intended target. Officials have not confirmed TTP involvement in the attack. Additional reports indicate that the Chinese ambassador to Pakistan was staying at the hotel, but was not present at the time of the attack. Officials have launched an investigation.

EUROPE

Russia (Security threat level – 3): On the evening of 21 April 2021, several thousand demonstrators gathered in cities across Russia to protest the treatment of Russian opposition leader and Putin administration critic Alexei Navalny, who has been in prison since January. Noteworthy demonstrations occurred in the capital Moscow as well as in St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Irkutsk and Vladivostok. Protesters chanted slogans in support of Navalny and against President Vladimir Putin. There were no reports of violence, but there was a significant riot police presence at the demonstrations, and reports indicate as many as 11,000 people were arrested nationwide.

MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Oman (Security threat level – 2): On 21 April 2021, Omani authorities announced that travelers from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh — or individuals who have transited through those countries in the prior 14 days — will be barred from entering the country effective at 1800 local time (1200 UTC) on 24 April. Authorities are imposing the ban due to increasing COVID-19 infection rates in the aforementioned countries. The ban will be in effect until further notice.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

France (Security threat level – 3): On 21 April 2021, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued updated travel advice regarding possible demonstrations in Boulogne-sur-Mer, which reads in part as follows: “There are reports of planned direct action to disrupt the flow of UK fish exports at Boulogne port starting the evening of Thursday 22 April and continuing throughout Friday 23 April. We encourage you to plan accordingly. If in the area, please follow advice from local authorities.”

Turkey (Security threat level – 4): On 22 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Ankara issued a Health Alert, which reads in part as follows: “On April 21, the Government of Turkey (GoT) announced an extension of this weekend’s COVID-19 curfew restrictions over the National Sovereignty and Children’s Day holiday. The extended weekend curfew will begin today, Thursday, April 22, at 7 PM and continue until 5 AM on Monday, April 26.”

April 21, 2021

AMERICAS

Bermuda (Security threat level – 1): On 20 April 2021, Bermuda authorities modified the island’s existing coronavirus-related restrictions. A nightly 2000-0600 local time (2300 to 0900 UTC) curfew is now in place, but businesses, such as retail stores and restaurants, are allowed to open for curbside and delivery services from 0700 to 1900 local time. Grocery stores and gas stations will continue to operate at 20% capacity, with restrictions that prescribe which days patrons are allowed to travel and shop based on the first letter of a person’s last name. Parks and recreational boating businesses will be allowed to reopen, but gatherings of individuals from separate households remain banned.

Chile (Security threat level – 2): On 20 April 2021, public health officials in Chile announced changes to city-level quarantine measures, which will remain in effect until further notice. As of 0500 local time (0900 UTC) on 22 April, the following communities will advance to phase two (transition) of the government’s five-phase plan: Ovalle (Coquimbo region), Pichilemu (O’Higgins region), Treguaco and San Ignacio (Ñuble region), Cañete (Biobío region), as well as Puerto Octay and Hualaihué (Los Lagos region). The following communities will advance to phase three (preparation) at the same time: Tocopilla (Antofagasta region), Huasco (Atacama region), Andacollo and Combarbalá (Coquimbo region), Pencahue (Maule region), as well as Ancud and Llanquihue (Los Lagos region). The following communities will revert to phase two (transition): Canela (Coquimbo region) as well as Licantén and Vichuquén (Maule region). Additionally, the community of Aysén (Aysén region) will revert to phase three (preparation).

Analyst Comment: Public health experts are calling for the government to revise its five-step quarantine plan to clarify the specific activities deemed safe at each phase. As of mid-April, ICU occupancy rates had surged over 95% nationwide and more than 90% of Chileans were under lockdown.

Colombia (Security threat level – 4): On 21 April 2021, authorities in the city of Bucaramanga imposed new restrictions due to a surge in COVID-19 cases. Under the restrictions, which will remain in place until 3 May, a nightly curfew from 2000 to 0500 local time (0100-1000 UTC) is in effect, in addition to a ban on the sale of alcohol. Meanwhile, all nonessential surgeries are suspended at hospitals due to limited bed capacity.

Lesser Antilles (Security threat level – 1): As of approximately 0500 local time (0900 UTC) on 21 April 2021, volcanic ash plumes that had been emitting from La Soufriere volcano were no longer being detected, according to the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Washington. Experts forecast that during the next 12 hours the volcano is unlikely to produce new volcanic ash plumes. Experts indicate that relatively minor volcanic activity continues. For example, at 0400 local time on 20 April the movement of lahar (mudflow) — likely from the southeastern side of the volcano — was detected for nearly 30 minutes. Additionally, forecasts warn that another eruption is possible during the next seven days.

Recovery efforts continue in St. Vincent and Barbados amid a serious water shortage. Local media reports indicate that Argyle International Airport (TVSA/SVD), located on St. Vincent, is still closed for cleanup of the runways and apron. No additional information as to when the airport will reopen is available. J.F. Mitchell Airport (TVSB/BQU), located on Bequia island, has reopened for humanitarian flights as of 19 April. Canouan Airport (TVSC/CIW), Union Island Airport (TVSU/UNI) and Mustique Airport (TVSM/MQS) are open from 0900 to 1700 local time to accommodate special flights. Cleanup crews are working to remove ashfall from public areas throughout the island. At latest report, authorities have not permitted individuals who evacuated from areas most affected by the volcano to return to their homes. Guyana has sent a third humanitarian shipment of 250 tons (227 metric tons) of food, water and other supplies to St. Vincent and Barbados, which is expected to arrive by 25 April.

United States (Security threat level – 2): On 20 April 2021, a jury convicted a former police officer who killed a Black man in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in May 2020 on all criminal charges — second- and third-degree murder, as well as second-degree manslaughter. Hundreds of people had gathered outside the Hennepin County Government Center in downtown Minneapolis, where the verdict was announced shortly after 1600 local time (2100 UTC). Following the announcement, demonstrations in support of the verdict continued into the evening hours across the city. The largest gathering occurred near the intersection of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue — known as George Floyd Square — in the southern part of the city to commemorate the deceased individual and celebrate the trial verdict. Meanwhile, a small group of individuals gathered outside the Brooklyn Center Police Department, located just northwest of Minneapolis, to protest the 11 April shooting death of a Black motorist by a police officer during a traffic stop in the suburb.

EUROPE

Germany (Security threat level – 3): On 21 April 2021, police officers in Berlin clashed with demonstrators who gathered near the Reichstag building to protest legislation that would allow for uniform nationwide coronavirus-related restrictions. Approximately 8,000 protesters gathered for the demonstration, and unrest broke out as officers attempted to disperse the rally due to a lack of social distancing precautions. Several individuals began attacking police officers, prompting authorities to deploy pepper spray. At least 40 people were arrested.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Russia (Security threat level – 3): On 20 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Moscow issued a Demonstration Alert, which reads in part as follows: “According to multiple media sources, demonstrations throughout Russia in support of an opposition activist are planned for Wednesday, April 21, at approximately 1900 hours local time. These demonstrations are unauthorized. The locations of the demonstrations may change, and streets and metro stations may be closed in the surrounding areas. Given the likely substantial police presence and possible dispersal and arrests of demonstrators, U.S. citizens should avoid these demonstrations and any demonstration-related activities.

“Given the possibility of crowds, you should be aware of guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to help prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus, which includes avoiding large crowds, distancing yourself from others, and wearing cloth face coverings in public settings.”

To read the full text of the alert, please click here.

South Sudan (Security threat level – 5): On 20 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Juba issued a Security Alert, which reads in part as follows: “A youth organization in the Kapoeta region of Eastern Equatoria State has issued a threat against Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) working in the region. Armed groups may attack or attempt to kidnap foreign nationals in the Kapoeta region. We advise U.S. citizens to not travel to the area.”

The full text of the alert is available here.

April 20, 2021

AMERICAS

Lesser Antilles (Security threat level – 1): As of approximately 1435 local time (1835 UTC) on 19 April 2021, volcanic ash plumes that had been emanating from La Soufriere volcano on the island of St. Vincent were no longer being detected, according to the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Washington. At latest report, previous volcanic ash plumes have dissipated from the atmosphere. Experts forecast that during the next 12 hours the volcano is unlikely to produce new volcanic ash plumes.

Some services remain interrupted amid cleanup efforts. Water shortages continue, as most supplies on the island of St. Vincent have been contaminated with volcanic ash. Argyle International Airport (TVSA/SVD), located on St. Vincent, had been expected to resume operations at 1600 local time on 19 April, although local media outlets report that it did not. There is no additional information as to when the airport is expected to reopen. Various countries, such as Grenada, have sent police officers to assist in humanitarian operations on St. Vincent. Elsewhere, some areas on the island of Barbados are facing water shortages after volcanic ash contaminated all available water sources. Grantley Adams International Airport (TBPB/BGI) in Barbados has reopened, and the port of Bridgetown has also reopened after operations were suspended due to volcanic activity.

ASIA

India (Security threat level – 3): On 20 April 2021, authorities in Uttar Pradesh state announced that a statewide lockdown will be in effect from 2000 local time (1430 UTC) on 23 April until 0700 local time on 26 April. Following the weekend lockdown, districts that have more than 500 active COVID-19 cases will impose a nightly 2000-0700 local time curfew. During the lockdown period, residents are only allowed to leave their homes for essential purposes, and nonessential businesses are required to close.

Philippines (Security threat level – 4): As of 0900 UTC on 20 April 2021, Typhoon Surigae — locally known as Bising — was located approximately 555 km (345 mi) east-northeast of the capital Manila and was moving north-northwest at a speed of 9 kph (6 mph). At that time, Surigae was generating maximum sustained winds of 212 kph, with gusts of up to 260 kph. The storm is forecast to continue on its current path before shifting east toward open ocean by 22 April, where it is expected to gradually weaken before dissipating. At least two people died on 19-20 April as Surigae generated strong winds and heavy rainfall near the country’s eastern areas. Damage was also reported in the Caraga region of Mindanao island. Power disruptions were reported in 63 cities and towns affected by the storm. Adverse weather is likely to continue through 21 April in northeastern areas of Luzon island as the storm passes nearby.

SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA

Chad (Security threat level – 5): On 20 April 2021, a spokesperson for the Chadian armed forces announced that President Idriss Déby Itno has succumbed to wounds he suffered during battles with the Front for Change and Concord in Chad (FACT) rebel group. According to the spokesperson, Mahamat Kaka — Deby’s son and a military general — will lead a ruling transitional military council for 18 months. The transitional council has enacted a nightly curfew from 1800 to 0500 local time (1700-0400 UTC) and dissolved the constitution and the National Assembly. The council also announced the closure of land and air borders, although land borders were already shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Additional details regarding the newly announced closures were not immediately available. The army has stated that new elections will follow the 18-month transitional period. The announcement of Deby’s death came hours after he was declared the winner of the presidential election held on 11 April. Deby reportedly secured 79% of the vote and would have started his sixth term in office; he initially came to power in 1990 through an armed revolt.

Although the surprising announcement of Deby’s death came hours after he was reelected to office and circumstances surrounding his death are unclear, Deby — a former army commander-in-chief — was known to visit troops in the battlefield. On 19 April Deby’s campaign officials had stated that he would join the military at the frontlines of the conflict with FACT militants. The rebel group on the same day stated that its militants were retreating northward following several days of clashes with Chadian armed forces in Kanem province. FACT leaders referred to the move as a “strategic withdrawal” in order to reassess plans to continue advancing southward toward the capital N’Djamena.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Costa Rica (Security threat level – 3): On 19 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in San José issued a Travel Alert regarding the reinstatement of nationwide weekend driving restrictions, which reads in part as follows: “Costa Rica’s Office of the President has announced that nationwide weekend driving restrictions will be reinstated as of Saturday, April 17, 2021. See below for a complete list of current COVID-19 related restrictions.

  • As of April 17, 2021, vehicles with license plates ending in even numbers can circulate on Saturdays between 5am and 11pm.
  • Vehicles with license plates ending in odd numbers can circulate on Sundays between 5am and 11pm.
  • There is a daily nationwide nighttime vehicle restriction from 11:00pm until 5:00am (including Saturday and Sunday).
  • Taxis, tourists with proof of hotel and flight reservations, and emergency vehicles are still allowed to circulate at all times.
  • Weekday anti-congestion vehicle restrictions in effect in downtown San José prior to Covid-19 have been reinstated. The majority of commercial businesses can remain open 7 days a week from 5:00am to 11:00pm.
  • National Parks may operate at 100% capacity
  • Bars and casinos can operate at 50% capacity
  • Beaches will be open from 5:00am to 6:00pm”

Jamaica (Security threat level – 3): On 20 April 2021, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued updated travel advice for Jamaica, which reads in part as follows: “The following measures apply to travellers to Jamaica:

  • Prior to checking in for a flight to Jamaica, you must get authorisation to enter from the Visit Jamaica website
  • There is a ban on all flights arriving in Jamaica from the UK until 30 April 2021
  • There is a ban on all flights arriving in Jamaica from Brazil, Chile, Peru, Colombia, Argentina and Paraguay until 4 May
  • All travellers from 12 years and upwards arriving in Jamaica must present a negative COVID-19 molecular (PCR, NAA, RNA) or Antigen test, which was conducted within the 72 hours prior to the date of travel
  • Business travellers must submit a negative COVID-19 test and be subject to testing on arrival (which they will need to pay for)
  • Additionally, all non-Jamaicans who have been in the UK within the last 14 days prior to intended arrival date in Jamaica, who may seek to enter the island through another country will not be permitted to enter Jamaica
  • All travellers arriving in Jamaica will be screened for COVID 19 symptoms at the airport”

Tunisia (Security threat level – 3): On 19 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Tunis issued a Health Alert, which reads in part as follows: “Effective April 18, 2021, the Government of Tunisia announced the following new or updated COVID-19 mitigation measures:

  • Schools are closed until April 30.
  • The daily curfew will continue to be in effect from 21:00 to 05:00; however, vehicle circulation, including private cars and all forms of public transportation, is banned between 19:00 and 05:00.

U.S. citizens are required to comply with the curfew hours, during which all non-emergency movements are prohibited.”

April 19, 2021

AMERICAS

Guatemala (Security threat level – 4): On 17 April 2021, Guatemalan authorities imposed an entry ban for all travelers who have been to Brazil, South Africa or the U.K. within 14 days prior to arrival in Guatemala. The measure will remain in effect until at least 30 April. Guatemalan nationals and residents are exempt from the order.

Lesser Antilles (Security threat level – 1): As of approximately 0005 local time (0405 UTC) on 19 April 2021, the La Soufriere volcano was no longer spewing ash and had no attached ash plume, according to the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Washington. However, two detached ash plumes have been identified. The first detached ash plume was located southwest of St. Vincent and the Grenadines over the Caribbean Sea, extending approximately 10,000 m (32,810 ft) in altitude and moving west at 37 kph (23 mph). The second ash cloud was located near the island of Grenada, extending approximately 23,000 meters in altitude and moving southwest at 27 kph. Experts forecast that during the next 12 hours the ash clouds will remain at their current altitude and will begin moving in the same direction. Additional eruptions are possible at any time. The La Soufriere volcano erupted most recently on 18 April, spewing ash approximately 3,000 meters in altitude, after which the ash plume drifted in a southwesterly direction. Prior to that occurrence, the volcano had been mostly quiet since last erupting on 16 April.

The volcano continues to disrupt services in St. Vincent and the surrounding area. The northern half of the island is a designated “red” zone and is under an evacuation order. The middle portion is designated “yellow,” with a narrow bottom area labeled as “green” that has received evacuated residents. Water shortages continue, as most supplies on the island are contaminated with volcanic ash. Grantley Adams International Airport (TBPB/BGI) in Barbados has reopened, but operations at Argyle International Airport (TVS/SVC) on St. Vincent will remain suspended until at least 1600 local time on 19 April. Workers at the airport have been clearing the runways and apron of fallen volcanic ash.

ASIA

China (Security threat level – 3): On 18 April 2021, Hong Kong authorities announced that flights from India, Pakistan and the Philippines will be suspended for 14 days beginning at 0000 local time on 20 April (1600 UTC on 19 April) due to coronavirus-related concerns. The suspensions are the result of a policy that bans flights from locations where five or more passengers test positive for the N501Y coronavirus strain over a seven-day period. The N501Y strain was originally identified in South Africa and is believed to be more contagious than previous strains of the virus.

India (Security threat level – 3): On 19 April 2021, authorities placed the capital New Delhi under lockdown from 2200 local time (1630 UTC) that same day until 0500 local time on 26 April amid a surge in local COVID-19 cases. Movement is prohibited unless necessary for carrying out essential activities, such as procuring food, medicine or medical care. Travelers to and from the airport will also be exempt from movement restrictions, and the transportation of goods will not be interrupted. Gatherings of more than four people will be prohibited, and all nonessential businesses will be closed. Cinemas will remain open at 30% of maximum occupancy limits. Restaurants will be limited to takeout and delivery services only.

Philippines (Security threat level – 4): As of 0900 UTC on 19 April 2021, recently downgraded Typhoon Surigae — locally known as Bising — was located approximately 570 km (355 mi) east of the capital Manila and was moving north-northwest at 7 kph (5 mph). At that time, Surigae was generating maximum sustained winds of 230 kph, with gusts of up to 277 kph. On its current forecast path, the storm is expected to continue parallel to the coast before shifting northeasterly toward open ocean by 22 April, where it is likely to dissipate. Although Surigae is not predicted to make landfall, it will continue to generate strong winds and heavy rainfall along coastal areas, including the Bicol region and Samar island.

EUROPE

Belgium (Security threat level – 3): During the early hours of 19 April 2021, a large fire ignited in the residential Heyvaert District of Anderlecht city, located approximately 5 km (3 mi) southwest of the capital Brussels. Firefighters battled the blaze for several hours, gaining control after the fire had mostly consumed a four-story building. Of the 30 individuals injured during the fire, one person died and four others remain in critical condition at a nearby hospital. An investigation into the cause of the blaze will begin once the fire has been completely extinguished. Police officers have cordoned off the affected area and evacuated several neighboring buildings. Nearby residents have been asked to keep doors and windows closed as a safety precaution.

MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Kuwait (Security threat level – 2): On 19 April 2021, Kuwaiti authorities announced that they will extend the country’s nightly curfew to 12 May, in order to control the spread of COVID-19 in the country. The nightly curfew, which had been set to end on 22 April, will last from 1900 to 0500 local time (1600-0200 UTC).

SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA

Chad (Security threat level – 5): As of 19 April 2021, the Chadian military is claiming that during an altercation in the northern Kanem province, near the border of Borkou province, it repelled rebel forces from the Front for Change and Concord in Chad (FACT) as they advanced toward the capital N’Djamena. A military spokesperson stated that multiple clashes occurred between the militants and army soldiers during the evening of 17 April. There are conflicting accounts of recent events. The military claims that it “totally decimated” the group, seized 26 vehicles, neutralized 300 militants and arrested at least 150 prisoners, while FACT referred to the events on 18 April as the “liberation of Kanem region” and claimed it was still advancing toward both N’Djamena and Mao — the capital of Kanem region located approximately 310 km (190 mi) north of N’Djamena. Other reports indicate that a faction of FACT continues to advance southward. Government tanks and soldiers remain stationed at the northern entrance to N’Djamena and throughout the city.

Multiple Western countries have issued warnings to their citizens in Chad. On 17 April the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) advised against all travel to Chad and advised British nationals in the country to leave as soon as possible due to armed convoys belonging to FACT advancing from the north in the direction of the capital N’Djamena. The full text of the advisory is available here. On the same day, the U.S. Embassy in N’Djamena issued a Security Alert, ordering the departure of non-emergency U.S. government employees from N’Djamena and directing U.S. citizens seeking to depart the country to do so via commercial flights. The French Embassy in N’Djamena has also issued an alert regarding rebel movements, which can be found here. Currently, N’Djamena International Airport (FTTJ/NDJ) remains open and limited commercial flights are still available; however, the status of transportation may change with little notice if the rebels reach the city.

Clashes commenced on 11 April — the same day as the presidential election — in the northern Tibesti province when FACT rebel forces engaged Chadian armed forces in the town of Zouar and the nearby village of Zouarké — both located near the border with Niger, approximately 385 km (240 mi) northwest of Faya-Largeau in the Borkou region. At that time, FACT rebel forces began advancing south toward the capital N’Djamena and the city of Mao. As of 19 April several civil society groups and opposition parties — including the Chadian Convention on Human Rights and the Party for Freedoms and Development — have called for a cease fire between FACT militants and the government, specifically requesting that incumbent President Idriss Déby open a dialogue with the rebel forces.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Democratic Republic Of The Congo (Security threat level – 4): On 19 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Kinshasa issued a Health Alert, which reads in part as follows:

“Updated Curfew Information: The following provinces have a curfew in place from 10:00 pm to 4:00 am: Kinshasa, North Kivu, South Kivu, Kongo Central, Lualaba, Haut-Katanga. As of April 13, the curfew is lifted entirely in all other provinces.

“Entering the DRC: All passengers must register with the official DRC INRB website three days prior to entering the country at www.inrbcovid.com. The system will create a QR code that must be presented upon arrival. You may pay the fee online or upon arrival at the airport. Negative COVID-19 PCR test results are still required to enter and depart the country as well as travel domestically between provinces. Upon arrival, travelers age 11 and older are required to receive another COVID-19 test at Kinshasa’s N’djili airport. Visit our COVID-19 Information page for more details.”

The full text of the alert is available here.

Nicaragua (Security threat level – 4): On 17 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Managua issued a Demonstration Alert, which reads in part as follows: “The Embassy has advised personnel of potential traffic disruption and strong police presence on April 18 and 19, particularly at traffic circles, Metrocentro, Galerias, Camino de Oriente malls, the parking lots of Edificio BAC and LAFISE Bank on Masaya Highway, the area surrounding UCA, the Holiday Inn Convention Center parking lot, and the second entrance to Las Colinas. There is likely to be a large police presence in the area surrounding Plaza Las Victorias. Demonstrations may occur in Managua or elsewhere in Nicaragua with little or no notice. Please monitor local media for updates and remember that violence may break out at any demonstration.”

South Africa (Security threat level – 4): On 19 April 2021, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued updated travel advice regarding a major fire on Cape Town’s Table Mountain, which reads in part as follows:

“A major fire has broken out on Table Mountain, affecting Newlands Forest, the University of Cape Town and the Vredehoek area. Some residents have been asked to evacuate. There is smoke impacting the immediate area and parts of the Central Business District (CBD). Some roads (including the M3) entering the CBD are closed. Follow instructions from local authorities and avoid the area. Follow @cityofCT, @cityofCTalerts, and @wo_fire for more information, look at the City of Cape Town website, https://www.capetown.gov.za/ or listen for alerts on local radio stations (Cape Talk, SAFM). The Cape Town etc website also has detailed information including emergency numbers.”

April 16, 2021

AMERICAS

Haiti (Security threat level – 4): On 15 April 2021, police officers used live ammunition and tear gas to disperse protesters congregated outside a Catholic Mass at the Church of St. Peter, located in the Pétion-Ville area of the capital Port-au-Prince. Protesters near the church lit a police vehicle on fire during the Mass, which reportedly prompted police officers to throw a can of tear gas inside the church as parishioners exited and to also target nearby protesters. Parishioners attending the Mass — unofficially titled the “Mass for the freedom of Haiti” — chanted slogans expressing their dissatisfaction with the country’s insecurity, including a series of high-profile kidnappings of members of the Catholic clergy and community, as well as anti-government sentiments. There were no reports regarding the number of casualties resulting from the violence. Demonstrators later erected and lit tire barricades on fire in the areas of Bourdon, Lalue and Pétion-Ville.

Lesser Antilles (Security threat level – 1): As of approximately 0405 local time (0805 UTC) on 16 April 2021, La Soufriere volcano continued to spew sporadic volcanic ash clouds, with some extending to approximately 2,440 m (8,000 ft) in altitude, according to the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Washington. At latest report, sporadic ash emissions were detected with a hot spot visible via infrared imagery. Experts forecast that during the next 18 hours the volcano will likely not spew any volcanic ash. Additionally, the ash cloud is expected to maintain its approximate altitude of 2,440 m as it moves at approximately 19 kph (12 mph) in a westerly direction.

The volcanic activity continues to disrupt services in St. Vincent and the surrounding area. While most areas on St. Vincent remain covered in ash, recovery operations have commenced. Argyle International Airport (TVSA/SVD) on St. Vincent remains closed, and Grantley Adams International Airport (TBPB/BGI) in Barbados is expected to remain closed until at least 1200 local time on 16 April. Flights to Barbados, Grenada, St. Lucia and St. Vincent are still suspended due to the lingering effects of the ashfall. Water shortages continue, as water supplies remain contaminated and available supplies are begin prioritized to emergency shelters. Authorities recommend that water from public water services be boiled and that water exposed to ashfall not be consumed. At latest report, intermittent power outages continue across the island. No casualties have been reported as a result of the eruption.

Lesser Antilles / Chile / Colombia (Security threat levels – 1 / 2 / 4): On 15 April 2021, authorities in Antigua and Barbuda revised and extended a nationwide nightly curfew aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19. Curfew hours are from 2300 to 0500 local time (0300-0900 UTC), during which time individuals are required to remain in their homes except to seek urgent medical attention. The curfew will remain in place until 30 June.

The government of Chile on 15 April announced adjustments to its city level coronavirus-related quarantine measures, which will remain in effect until further notice. As of 0500 local time (0100 UTC) on 17 April, the following communities will enter phase one (quarantine) of the government’s five-stage system: Pozo Almonte (located in the region of Tarapaca) and Retiro (located in the region of Maule). Additionally, the community of Paredones (located in the region of O’Higgins) will revert to phase two (transition). Conversely, as of 0500 local time on 19 April the following communities will advance to phase two (transition): La Serena, Los Vilos, Monte Patria and Coquimbo (all located in the region of Coquimbo), Peumo and Santa Cruz (both located in the region of O’Higgins), Quillón (located in Nuble), Los Sauces (located in Arauncania), and Los Lagos (located in de los Rios).

In Colombia, the mayor of Cali announced a lockdown on 15 April due to a spike in COVID-19 cases. The lockdown will remain in effect from 1300 local time (1800 UTC) on 17 April to 0500 local time (1000 UTC) on 19 April, during which residents are required to remain at home, except for essential purposes. Additionally, the sale of alcohol will be banned from 2000 local time on 16 April to 0500 local time on 19 April, and all social gatherings are banned until further notice.

United States (Security threat level – 2): Shortly after 2300 local time on 15 April 2021 (0300 UTC on 16 April), a gunman opened fire at a FedEx facility near Indianapolis International Airport (KIND/IND), located nearly 13 mi (21 km) southwest of Indianapolis, the capital of the midwestern U.S. state of Indiana. Eyewitness reports indicate that the assailant, who was armed with a high-powered firearm, began to fire randomly at the shipping company’s operations center. At least eight individuals were killed, and a number of others were wounded. Four of the wounded were hospitalized for medical treatment; one remains in critical condition. A local police spokesperson stated that the suspected gunman committed suicide at the scene. Flight operations at the airport were not affected due to the event. The motive for the shooting is unknown, and it is not clear if the perpetrator was an employee at the facility. Detectives from the Indiana State Police are collaborating with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department to investigate the event.

ASIA

Philippines (Security threat level – 4): On 16 April 2021, authorities extended an existing coronavirus-related entry ban on most foreign travelers through 30 April in response to high numbers of COVID-19 cases. The ban was initially scheduled to end on 21 April. Exceptions to the order include diplomats, medical workers, spouses and children of Filipino citizens, transportation workers and anyone else who receives approval from officials.

Thailand (Security threat level – 3): On 16 April 2021, authorities announced that on 18 April new coronavirus-related restrictions will go into effect nationwide for 14 days. Additionally, 18 provinces will be declared “red” zones while the country’s remaining provinces will be classified as “orange” zones. Nationwide, entertainment venues, such as bars, karaoke lounges and massage parlors, will close; gatherings of more than 50 people will be banned unless an organizer receives prior approval from authorities; and residents are advised to avoid unnecessary travel outside their homes. In red zone provinces — including the capital Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chonburi, Samut Prakan, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Samut Sakhon, Pathum Thani, Nakhon Pathom, Phuket, Nakhon Ratchasima, Nonthaburi, Songkhla, Tak, Udon Thani, Suphanburi, Sa Kaew, Rayong and Khon Kaen — restaurants and markets are required to suspend in-person services nightly by 2100 local time (1400 UTC). Meanwhile in orange areas, restaurants are allowed to remain open until 2300 local time.

EUROPE

Ukraine (Security threat level – 4): On 14 April 2021, authorities in the capital Kyiv extended lockdown restrictions imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19. Under the restrictions, which are now in effect until 30 April, access to public transportation is restricted to essential workers with passenger passes only, while all schools and kindergartens remain closed. Meanwhile, public events are banned.

SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA

Nigeria (Security threat level – 5): As of 16 April 2021, clashes between armed groups and national forces remain ongoing in northeastern Borno state following an attack overnight on 13-14 April by rebel militants against Damasak — a border town housing a military base. During the initial attack, militants attempted to infiltrate the military base but were repelled by government forces. They subsequently looted and destroyed nearby homes, businesses, a police station, humanitarian aid agency warehouses and a UNHCR facility. At least 18 people were killed, and 21 others were injured, although the death toll is likely to rise. It was the third such attack in the span of a week, prompting approximately 80% of the 65,000 residents in Damasak to flee. According to a spokesperson for the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the majority of humanitarian aid organizations in the area have suspended operations in the area due to the recent bout of insecurity.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

South Africa (Security threat level – 4): On 15 April 2021, the U.S. Mission in South Africa issued an Alert regarding roadway security on N1 and N4, which reads in part as follows:

“Location: N4 East between Solomon Mahlangu on-ramp and the Diamond Hill Toll Plaza, as well as the N4 West towards Rustenburg from the N1 interchange.

“Event: Police and media report criminals have used homemade devices placed in roadways to disable vehicle tires on N4 East between Solomon Mahlangu on-ramp and the Diamond Hill Toll Plaza, as well as the N4 West towards Rustenburg from the N1 interchange. The intention is to rob motorists who pull over after their vehicles are disabled.

“Actions to Take:

  • Minimize or avoid driving on the impacted area at night.
  • Maintain vigilance on road conditions. The devices are often camouflaged in plastic bags or trash.
  • If your tire is deflated, DO NOT PULL OVER, and instead drive slowly and carefully to a safe area.”

Ukraine (Security threat level – 4): On 15 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv issued a Security Alert, which reads in part as follows:

“Location: Crimea and eastern parts of Donetsk and Luhansk

“Event: The Embassy of the United States of America in Ukraine continues to monitor the situation with Russia in occupied Crimea, and along Ukraine’s borders, where security conditions may change with little or no notice. The Level Four – Do Not Travel guidance remains in effect for Crimea due to abuses by Russian occupation authorities, and for the eastern parts of the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts due to armed conflict. Please check our website and social media pages for the latest statements from U.S. officials.”

The full text of the alert is available here.

April 15, 2021

AMERICAS

Argentina / Jamaica / Panama (Security threat levels – 3 / 3 / 3): On 14 April 2021, Argentine President Alberto Fernandez imposed new coronavirus-related restrictions in the Buenos Aires metropolitan area due to a surge in infections that is overwhelming the city’s health care system. A nightly curfew from 2000 to 0600 local time (2300 to 0900 UTC) will commence on 16 April and remain in effect until further notice. All recreational, social, cultural, sporting and religious activities are also suspended in the city until further notice. The Federal Police, Gendarmerie, Prefecture and Airport Security Police will enforce the restrictions. Additionally, members of the military will be stationed across the city to provide COVID-19 testing and distribute hand sanitizer as well as assist with other health measures. In response to the new restrictions, residents across the city banged pots and pans in protest and demonstrators gathered outside the presidential palace (Casa Rosada). While the president did not extend the restrictions to the provinces, he recommended voluntary compliance. Notably, provincial authorities in Santa Fe province — located in northeastern Argentina — stated that the province will not comply with the new COVID-19 restrictions.

Jamaican President Andrew Holness on 13 April adjusted extended weekend curfew hours currently in place. The weekend curfew will now run from 1600 to 0500 local time (2100 to 1000 UTC) Saturday to Sunday and 1400-0500 local time from Sunday to Monday. The extended curfew hours previously included Friday, but due to an improvement in the number of COVID-19 cases and hospitalization rates, the Friday curfew has been lifted. A nightly curfew from 2000 to 0500 local time remains in place for all other days. Additionally, public gatherings are limited to 10 people. The curfew is scheduled to expire on 4 May.

Panama’s minister of health on 13 April announced a loosening of curfew hours as of 19 April following a decline in the country’s COVID-19 case rate. Bars with patios and outdoor sporting activities are allowed to reopen at 25% capacity, while the sale and consumption of alcohol remains banned. The weekend quarantine in effect in the Changuinola district in Bocas del Toro province will be lifted as of 17 April. Additionally, all travelers to Panama must present a negative result from a PCR test upon arrival beginning on 19 April. Travelers from South American countries, who previously had to quarantine for a minimum of five days upon arrival to Panama due to the prominence of new COVID-19 variants in the region, need only quarantine for three days.

Lesser Antilles (Security threat level – 1): As of approximately 1220 local time (0420 UTC) on 15 April 2021, La Soufriere volcano continued to spew volcanic ash clouds, with some extending to approximately 12,200 m (40,000 ft) in altitude, according to the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Washington. At latest report, volcanic ash emissions were not detected, although a hot spot remains visible via infrared imagery. Experts forecast that during the next 18 hours the possibility of sporadic eruptions exists, as the volcano is gradually expected to cease activity. Additionally, the volcanic ash plume is forecast to gradually dissipate within the next six hours.

Volcanic activity continues to disrupt services in the area. Argyle International Airport (TVSA/SVD) on St. Vincent remains closed, and Grantley Adams International Airport (TBPB/BGI) in Barbados is expected to remain closed until at least 1200 local time on 16 April. At latest report, flights to Barbados, Grenada, St. Lucia and St. Vincent are suspended. Most of the island of St. Vincent remains covered in ash, including the capital Kingstown. Water shortages continue as ashfall has contaminated water supplies, and available supplies are being prioritized to emergency shelters. Authorities recommend that water from public water services be boiled and that water exposed to ashfall not be consumed. Intermittent power outages continue across the island. No casualties have been reported as a result of the eruption.

United States (Security threat level – 2): On 14 April 2021, police officers and protesters clashed outside the Brooklyn Center Police Department, located just northwest of Minneapolis, Minnesota, for a fourth consecutive night. At approximately 2115 local time (0215 UTC on 15 April), police officers deployed stun grenades and tear gas to disperse the crowd of approximately 500 individuals who had gathered outside the police station to protest the 11 April shooting death of a Black man during a traffic stop in the area. Some protesters threw water bottles and other projectiles at the officers. Minnesota National Guard troops deployed to reinforce the officers in order to remove the protesters, who left the area within approximately one hour after the clashes. Police officials arrested at least 24 people on various charges related to the protest in Brooklyn Center where a curfew was in effect from 2200 local time on 14 April to 0600 local time on 15 April. Authorities have arrested the former police officer who shot the man at the traffic stop and filed manslaughter charges in relation to the killing of the motorist.

EUROPE

Belgium (Security threat level – 3): On 14 April 2021, authorities announced a loosening of coronavirus-related restrictions beginning on 19 April. The ban on nonessential travel to and from Belgium will be lifted, although individuals who return from a government-designated “red zone” will be required to quarantine and take a COVID-19 test on days one and seven upon return. Schools will be allowed to reopen for limited in-person learning. As of 26 April, nonessential shops will be allowed to fully reopen and serve customers without prior appointments. Close contact professionals, such as barbers and tattoo artists, will be permitted to reopen as well. The number of attendees permitted at outdoor gatherings will also increase from four to 10 people.

Switzerland (Security threat level – 2): On 14 April 2021, the Swiss government announced that restrictions imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19 will be eased as of 19 April. Bars and restaurants will be permitted to open outdoor seating areas with no more than four people at each table. Leisure facilities, such as botanical gardens, cinemas and zoos, will be permitted to reopen. Additionally, concerts and sporting events will be allowed to resume operations, as long as attendance is limited to no more than one third of the capacity of the venue.

MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Iraq (Security threat level – 5): On the night of 14 April 2021, unidentified militants launched an armed drone attack on a U.S. military base located at Erbil International Airport (ORER/EBL) in the northern Kurdistan region. Officials briefly suspended flight operations at the facility, but they have since resumed. The attack damaged a warehouse at the airport, but there have been no reports of casualties. No group has claimed responsibility for the attack; however, video of the incident is circulating on social media accounts of Iran-affiliated Shiite militia groups.

Analyst Comment: Attacks by Shiite militant groups affiliated with the Iranian government, particularly those targeting U.S. military posts, have become increasingly common in northern Iraq. However, prior attacks have generally involved rockets and this event would be the first such incident involving an armed drone. In February 2021, a rocket attack targeted Erbil International Airport and killed one U.S. government contractor.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Cambodia (Security threat level – 3): On 15 April 2021, the U.K. Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) issued updated travel advice regarding lockdowns in the capital Phnom Penh and Takhmao, which reads in part as follows: “There has been a community outbreak of COVID-19 since 20 February 2021. The Government of Cambodia has introduced a lockdown of Phnom Penh and Takhmao (in Kandal Province) from midnight on 14 April 2021 for two weeks. Guidance is available on The Cambodian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website. In addition, all restaurants in Phnom Penh are now closed all day to sit-in customer but food delivery services may be available. The sale of alcohol has also been suspended.”

Lesser Antilles (Security threat level – 1): On 14 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Bridgetown, Barbados, issued a Natural Disaster Alert for St. Vincent and the Grenadines, which reads in part as follows:

“Event: The U.S. Embassy is coordinating with Royal Caribbean Cruises for a transit opportunity for U.S. citizens who wish to depart St. Vincent on Friday, 16 April to Dutch Sint Maarten. Boarding on the Celebrity Reflection will begin at 7:00 A.M. and will depart Kingstown Port, St. Vincent at 1:00 P.M. The ship will arrive in Philipsburg, Sint Maarten on the morning of Saturday, 17 April at approximately 7:00 A.M. CDC recommends against travel on cruise ships because the chance of getting COVID-19 on cruise ships is higher since the virus appears to spread more easily between people in close quarters aboard ships. See link to CDC guidance below.

“There is no cost or travel fare for the ship’s voyage. However, U.S. citizens will be responsible for making their own onward travel arrangements. Please plan accordingly, including potential hotel stays in Sint Maarten and booking onward commercial airline flights from the Sint Maarten Princess Juliana International Airport which offers direct flight to multiple U.S. cities.

“U.S. citizens who decide not to depart St. Vincent should be prepared to shelter in place for an undetermined amount of time. There are currently no future plans for other transit opportunities.”

The full text of the alert can be read here.

Saudi Arabia (Security threat level – 3): On 15 April 2021, the U.S. Department of State issued an updated Travel Advisory for Saudi Arabia, which reads in part as follows: “Reconsider Travel to Saudi Arabia due to the threat of missile and drone attacks on civilian facilities, and COVID-19. Exercise increased caution in Saudi Arabia due to terrorism…”

“Missile and drone attacks perpetrated by Iran and Iran-supported militant groups represent a significant threat. The Islamic Republic of Iran has supplied Yemen-based Houthis and other regional proxy groups with weapons to conduct destructive and sometimes lethal attacks using drones, missiles, and rockets against a variety of Saudi sites, including critical infrastructure, civilian airports, military bases, and energy facilities throughout the country, as well as vessels in Red Sea shipping lanes. Recent attacks were aimed at targets throughout Saudi Arabia including Riyadh, Jeddah, Dhahran, Jizan, Khamis Mushayt, the civilian airport in Abha, Al Kharj, military installations in the south, as well as oil and gas facilities.”

To read the full text of the advisory, please click here.

April 14, 2021

AMERICAS

Colombia (Security threat level – 4): On 13 April 2021, President Iván Duque announced weekend lockdowns for Barranquilla, Bogotá, Medellín and Santa Marta in an attempt to quell escalating rates of COVID-19 infection. In Bogotá and Medellín, a modified 4×3 “pico and cédula” strategy will be implemented, with a quarantine imposed from 2359 local time on 15 April (0459 UTC on 16 April) to 0400 local time on 19 April, and again the following weekend from 2359 on 22 April to 0400 local time on 26 April. During these periods, residents will be allowed to leave their homes to carry out essential activities, such as purchasing groceries or banking; however, only one person per family will be allowed to travel in fulfillment of such activities, and only during designated times based on the last digit of their identity card. Additionally, leaving or entering Bogotá and Medellín during these periods will be prohibited. In Barranquilla and Santa Marta, these quarantine measures will be applied on 17-18 April only.

Haiti (Security threat level – 4): On 14 April 2021, President Jovenel Moïse announced the resignation of Prime Minister Joseph Jouthe in response to Haiti’s deteriorating security environment. Moïse stated that the appointment of the new prime minister, current Minister of Foreign Affairs Claude Joseph, will allow the government to better address Haiti’s high crime rates and political instability. Joseph is the sixth prime minister to be appointed by Moïse during his four years as president. Although the constitution dictates that a new prime minister must be confirmed by parliament, Moïse has ruled by decree after the legislative branch was suspended in 2020.

Analyst Comment: President Jovenel Moïse has previously timed appointments of new prime ministers to placate critics of his government’s policies and to distract from other perceived failures.

Lesser Antilles (Security threat level – 1): As of 0400 local time (0800 UTC) on 14 April 2021, the La Soufriere volcano was continuing to spew ash, with some plumes shooting as high as 11,000 m (36,090 ft) into the sky, according to the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Washington. Experts expect the volcano to spew ash for at least the next 18 hours, with plumes reaching an altitude of approximately 35,000 m at the end of 18 hours. The primary ash cloud is projected to move slowly north over the forecast period. A secondary ash cloud has detached from the volcano; it is currently located approximately 370 km (230 mi) east of the summit of the volcano and extending 40,000 meters into the air. The volcano is also generating pyroclastic flows, which are fast moving currents of hot gas and other volcanic matter that run down the side of the volcano. According to scientists with the University of West Indies Seismic Research Center, the volcano is expected to continue to erupt for the next several days.

Volcanic activity has disrupted services across the island. Argyle International Airport (TVSA/SVD) on St. Vincent remains closed, and Grantley Adams International Airport (TBPB/BGI) in Barbados will be closed until at least 1200 local time on 14 April. Most of the island of St. Vincent remains covered in ash. The local coast guard continues to evacuate people — mostly individuals who resisted the previous evacuation order — from restricted areas of the island. Water shortages continue as ashfall has contaminated local water supplies. Authorities recommend that water obtained from public water services be boiled and that water exposed to ashfall should not be consumed. Intermittent power outages continue across the island. No casualties have been reported as a result of the eruption.

United States (Security threat level – 2): On 13 April 2021, police officers clashed with protesters outside the Brooklyn Center Police Department, located just northwest of Minneapolis, Minnesota, for a third consecutive night. At approximately 2045 local time (0145 UTC on 14 April), officers of the Minnesota State Patrol began deploying tear gas and stun grenades in an attempt to disperse the crowd of approximately 800 to 1,000 people who had gathered at the site, where dozens of National Guard personnel and police officers are stationed. Some of the protesters threw rocks, bottles and other projectiles at the officers during the clashes. There were no reports of significant injuries or deaths. Authorities arrested more than 60 participants. In anticipation of violence, local officials had instituted curfews in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, including in Brooklyn Center, the latter of which was in effect from 2200 local time on 13 April to 0600 local time on 14 April. Hundreds of protesters have been gathering outside the police department nightly since 11 April after a police officer shot and killed a 20-year-old Black man during a traffic stop in Brooklyn Center. The local police chief has stated that the death occurred as the result of an “accidental discharge” of a gun by the officer, who had intended to deploy a Taser stun gun.

United States (Security threat level – 2): As of the morning of 14 April 2021, the U.S. Coast Guard and other emergency crews are conducting search and rescue operations off the coast of the southeastern U.S. state of Louisiana after a 129-ft (40-m) commercial vessel capsized the previous day about 8 mi (13 km) south of Port Fourchon, which is located nearly 100 miles south of the city of New Orleans. Multiple Coast Guard vessels, four private boats, a helicopter and an HC-144 aircraft used for maritime patrol have been deployed to assist in the search efforts. The self-propelled vessel had 19 people on board when it overturned during the late afternoon hours of 13 April; six of those aboard have been rescued. Inclement weather conditions, with winds of up to 70-80 mph (113-129 kph), were recorded in the area at the time of the event.

ASIA

Pakistan (Security threat level – 5): On 14 April 2021, the interior minister announced plans to ban the far-right Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) party under the Anti-Terrorism Act, pending approval from the Cabinet, amid ongoing protests organized by the TLP following the arrest of the party’s leader on 12 April. During the demonstrations, TLP supporters blocked roads in major cities and frequently clashed with police officers. At least four people have died in the unrest, and hundreds more have suffered injuries; hundreds of protesters have also been arrested. As of 14 April, most roadways in major cities have been cleared, and authorities have deployed additional security personnel to major cities throughout the Ramadan period in an effort to maintain security.

MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

Morocco / Tunisia (Security threat levels – 3 / 3): On 13 April 2021, officials with the Moroccan National Airport Office (ODNA) announced a ban on commercial flights to and from Tunisia beginning 15 April in an effort to limit the spread of COVID-19 in the country. The ban will be in effect until further notice.

United Arab Emirates (Security threat level – 2): On 13 April 2021, unidentified assailants fired a missile at an Israeli-owned cargo vessel in the Gulf of Oman off the coast of the United Arab Emirates near the port city of Fujairah. The Bahamas-flagged ship reportedly sustained minor damage. There were no reports of casualties. The vessel is currently at the port undergoing damage assessment. Israeli media sources, citing local security officials, indicate that the Iranian military perpetrated the attack. The targeted vessel is owned by the Tel Aviv-based firm Ray Shipping Limited, which also owns another vessel that was struck by a suspected Iranian missile in the Arabian Sea in February.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Republic of Congo (Security threat level – 3): On 13 April 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Brazzaville issued a Message for U.S. Citizens regarding the presidential swearing in ceremony in the city, which reads in part as follows:

“On Friday April 16, President Denis Sassou N’Guesso will be sworn in at the Palais des Congrés. Several heads of state will attend the ceremony and will arrive and depart within 24 hours of the ceremony. Roads may be blocked and transportation, including commercial air travel, could be disrupted. Due to the expectation of heavy traffic jams around the airport, the embassy and throughout the city center on Friday from 09:00 to 16:00, U.S. government personnel are advised to avoid those areas during these hours and to work from home when possible. Consular services will be limited to emergency services.”

The full text of the alert is available here.