Worldview Security Report – May 21, 2019
21-May-19

AMERICAS

United States (Security threat level – 2): As of 21 May 2019, a tornado watch remains in effect for parts of Arkansas, Illinois, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas, following severe weather that affected these states the previous day. Meteorologists indicate that there is a possibility of tornadoes, damaging winds and hail in those states. Additionally, flash flooding-related concerns are an ongoing issue in eastern Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma. The previous day, most schools and universities in the state of Oklahoma, including the University of Oklahoma, suspended classes due to the inclement weather. At least two tornadoes struck residential areas in Oklahoma state and caused minor damage in the northern town of Lucien and the southwestern town of Mangum. Thus far, there have been no weather-related fatalities.

ASIA

Indonesia (Security threat level – 4): On 21 May 2019, approximately 1,000 people gathered in central Jakarta’s commercial and government district to show their support for opposition candidate Prabowo Subianto, who announced that he intends to challenge the results of the April election. Prabowo claims that there was widespread cheating during the election and that he will be filing a challenge with the Constitutional Court. Indonesia’s election supervisory agency and independent observers, however, maintain that the poll was free and fair, with incumbent President Joko Widodo winning approximately 55.5 percent of the vote compared to Prabowo’s 44.5 percent. Prabowo has urged his supporters to peacefully protest the decision, while the government has warned opponents of the results to not attempt to undermine the elections.

As a precaution, authorities have issued an alert status for Jakarta, which will be in effect from 21 May through 25 May, due to the threat of militants launching “terrorist strikes” on planned rallies opposing the poll results. In recent weeks, security forces have arrested at least 30 Islamist militants suspected of planning attacks. Travelers to Jakarta should avoid all large gatherings as a precaution.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Kenya (Security threat level – 4): On 21 May 2019, the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) issued updated travel advice for Kenya, which reads in part as follows: “A terror attack could happen anywhere and at any time in Kenya. Somali terror group Al-Shabaab continues to threaten attacks. Credible information indicates that Westerners may be targeted by extremists in Nairobi, coastal areas of Kenya, Naivasha and Nanyuki. Be particularly alert in public places such as shopping malls, hotels, tourist resorts – including beach resorts and beaches, and places of worship. Kidnapping remains a serious threat. Exercise a high degree of caution in Kenya due to the high threat of terrorist attack and high level of crime. Reconsider your need to travel to Mombasa, coastal parts of Kilifi and Tana River counties, and Lamu County south of Pate Island. Higher levels apply in other parts of the country.”

Security threat levels range from 1 (Very Low) to 5 (Very High) and are determined using a comprehensive system that utilizes both qualitative and quantitative analysis. The primary factors used to determine a location’s security threat level are Armed Conflict, Crime, Demonstrations/Strikes, Ethnic/Sectarian Tensions, Graft/Corruption, Kidnapping, Political Instability, Government Restriction and Terrorism.