ASIA China (Security threat level – 3): On 23 November...
United States (Security threat level – 2): On the morning of 2 September 2021, heavy rainfall and subsequent flash floods associated with the remnants of Hurricane Ida are causing significant disruptions across the northeastern region of the U.S. In New York City, commuter train service has been severely limited since the nighttime hours of 1 September, but the Metropolitan Transit Authority anticipates a full restoration of the service by the afternoon hours of 2 September. A citywide travel advisory urging all nonemergency vehicles to stay off the roads and highways remains in effect. The city mayor had issued a ban on nonessential overnight travel, which expired at 0500 local time (0900 UTC). Both LaGuardia Airport (KLGA/LGA) and John F. Kennedy International Airport (KJFK/JFK) experienced significant flight delays and cancellations; flights are gradually resuming at both airports, but cancellations and delays are likely to continue due to a backlog of flights. In the adjacent state of New Jersey, operations were completely halted at Newark Liberty International Airport (KEWR/EWR) — where baggage areas and the lower levels of Terminal B were inundated with floodwaters — for more than two hours. While the airport has reopened, more than 370 flights scheduled to operate on 2 September have been canceled. United Airlines has announced the suspension of its flights at the facility in the wake of the flooding. Additionally, New Jersey Transit has suspended all rail services, except the Atlantic City Rail Line. Newark Light Rail — which serves Newark, New Jersey, and nearby areas — is also suspended. Thus far, there have been reports of at least seven weather-related fatalities in New York City and another in the New Jersey town of Passaic.
Meanwhile, in Louisiana — where Hurricane Ida made landfall as a Category 4 storm on 29 August — more than 926,800 homes and businesses remain without electricity. The city of New Orleans is mostly without power, although the latest reports indicate that electricity has been restored to 11,500 customers in the city since 1 September. Nearly all commercial flights at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (KMSY/MSY) have been canceled for 2 September, although Delta Airlines is currently expected to operate a limited number of flights. Commercial flights at the airport have remained suspended since 29 August, and flight operations through the facility are likely to remain minimal through the upcoming weekend.
India (Security threat level – 3): On 1 September 2021, authorities in Indian-administered Kashmir deployed additional security forces and shut down mobile internet service as a precautionary measure following the death of a prominent separatist leader in the region. In Srinagar, security forces blocked roads around the former leader’s home and advised residents to remain at home. Additional restrictions and unrest are possible as supporters respond to the politician’s death. The 92-year-old separatist leader was suffering from multiple illnesses and had been largely under house arrest for the past 12 years.
Australia (Security threat level – 2): On 2 September 2021, the Australian government extended its existing coronavirus-related international travel ban through 17 December; the measure was set to expire on 17 September. Officials stated, however, that they expect to lift travel restrictions on at least some countries after 80% of the eligible population in Australia is fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Additional information regarding specific details of the ban, including exemptions, is available here.
Azerbaijan (Security threat level – 4): On 1 September 2021, authorities extended nationwide restrictions imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19 until 1 November. Under the restrictions, individuals must possess a COVID-19 passport showing proof of vaccination or recent recovery from COVID-19 in order to enter businesses such as cafes, hotels, hair salons, restaurants, shopping centers and most private and public events. Additionally, face masks remain mandatory in indoor spaces.
United Arab Emirates (Security threat level – 2): On 2 September 2021, Emirati authorities announced that vaccinated travelers arriving in the capital Abu Dhabi will no longer be required to quarantine beginning on 5 September. All travelers must provide a negative PCR test taken within 48 hours before departure and submit to an additional PCR test at the airport upon arrival. Vaccinated travelers from “green list” countries must also submit to a PCR test on day 6 of their stay, while vaccinated travelers from all other countries must submit to PCR tests on days 4 and 8 of their stay. Unvaccinated travelers from “green list” countries must submit to a PCR test on days 6 and 9 of their stay, while all other unvaccinated travelers will remain subject to self-quarantine in their accommodations and undergo a PCR test on day 9 of their stay. All tourists and residents must have proof of a “green” status on the Alhosn app in order to enter public areas. More information regarding the Green Pass can be found here.
Democratic Republic Of The Congo (Security threat level – 4): On 1 September 2021, suspected Islamist militants ambushed a civilian convoy under military escort near Ofaye village in Ituri province. According to local officials, at least five civilians were killed and dozens more were kidnapped during the attack. The military has since freed more than 50 of the approximately 80 individuals the rebels abducted. The convoy of about 100 vehicles was traveling between the cities of Beni and Butembo. While no group has thus far claimed responsibility for the attack, local sources allege that Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) rebels perpetrated the ambush.
Analyst comment: In May 2021, the government imposed a state of siege in Ituri and North Kivu provinces to counter the increasing activities of Islamist insurgents in eastern DRC. However, attacks have since increased in both scale and severity.
Mali (Security threat level – 5): On 2 September 2021, the U.S. Embassy in Bamako issued a Demonstration Alert, which reads in part as follows: “The Popular Front Against the High Cost of Living is planning a demonstration on Thursday, September 2, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. The itinerary is from the Bebemba roundabout to Cite Administrative. The demonstration has not been approved by local authorities.
“Demonstrations sometimes turn violent, resulting in the burning of tires, clashes with the police, blockage on the roads and bridges, throwing of rocks at vehicles, the deployment of tear gas, and small arms fire.”
The full text of the alert is available here.
South Africa (Security threat level – 4): On 1 September 2021, the U.S. Consulate General in Cape Town issued a Demonstration Alert, which reads in part as follows: “Demonstrations are expected for Thursday, September 2, 2021, at the U.S. Consulate General in Cape Town from 11:00 A.M. until 2:00 P.M. Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.”