Worldview Security Update – May 8, 2019
8-May-19

ASIA

Afghanistan (Security threat level – 5): On 8 May 2019, Taliban militants detonated an explosive device in Kabul’s Shahr-e-Naw area near the attorney general’s office and the headquarters of international non-government organization (NGO) Counterpart International. The explosion was followed by a gun battle between militants and security forces. Authorities evacuated at least 80 people from the NGO’s office building. Approximately two dozen people were injured during the security incident. A Taliban representative later stated that they had targeted the NGO for conducting “harmful Western activities” inside Afghanistan.

Bangladesh (Security threat level – 4): On 8 May 2019, jute mill workers continued to strike over unpaid wages in Dhaka and Khulna. In Dhaka, workers blocked roads in the Demra district, including the main road to neighboring Jatrabari, for several hours. In Khulna, workers blocked roads and railways between 1600 and 1900 local time (1000 and 1300 UTC). There were no reports of violence in either city.

Pakistan (Security threat level – 5): On 8 May 2019, a suicide bomber detonated explosives near a police vehicle parked outside the Data Darbar Sufi Shine in Lahore. Hundreds of people were in or around the shrine — a popular pilgrimage site and tourist attraction — when the blast occurred. At least 10 people were killed and 23 others were injured in the blast. The Hizbul Ahrar, a splinter group of the Pakistani Taliban, has claimed responsibility for the attack.

SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA

Tanzania (Security threat level – 3): As of 8 May 2019, heavy rains and flooding are expected to continue to disrupt travel throughout Tanzania, including in Dar es Salaam, Lindi, Pemba Tanga, Mtwara, and on Zanzibar Island. On 7 May, flooding in Dar es Salaam shut down the city’s transportation system and closed down parts of Morogoro Road for up to six hours. Meanwhile, flooding on Zanzibar destroyed 141 houses in Unguja’s Urban district.

GOVERNMENT WARNINGS

Albania (Security threat level – 3): On 8 May 2019, the U.K. Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) issued updated travel advice for Albania, which reads in part as follows:

  • “A major demonstration has been announced for the evening of Saturday 11 May 2019; you should check local media for the latest information, remain vigilant and avoid any demonstrations.”
  • Jamaica: On 7 May 2019, the U.S. Embassy in Kingston issued a Security Alert, which reads in part as follows:

  • “Location: Parishes of Westmoreland, Hanover, and St. James
  • “Event: The U.S. Embassy in Kingston advises U.S. citizens that, effective April 30, the Government of Jamaica has declared a State of Public Emergency covering the parishes of Westmoreland, Hanover, and St. James, based on escalating criminal activity and threats to public safety and the rule of law. The State of Public Emergency, declared under the 1966 Emergency Powers Act, allows Jamaican security forces within the borders of the Westmoreland, Hanover, and St. James Parishes to arbitrarily detain and deport suspicious persons, enter premises, and seize property without warrant. Expect to encounter increased police and military presence, checkpoints, and searches of persons and vehicles within the borders of the Westmoreland, Hanover, and St. James Parishes.
  • “The State of Public Emergency covers the entire area comprising the parishes of Westmoreland, Hanover, and St. James. This includes the cities of Negril and Montego Bay.”
  • Moldova (Security threat level – 3): On 8 May 2019, the U.S. Embassy in Chisinau issued a Demonstration Alert, which reads in part as follows:

  • “Location: Central Chisinau, Moldova, culminating at the memorial complex “Eternitate”
  • “Event: Two large marches are expected to take place on Thursday, May 9, beginning at 9 a.m. The marches are being organized by political parties to commemorate Victory Day. Although the marches are expected to be peaceful, there will be a heavy police presence and traffic disruptions.”
  • Ukraine (Security threat level – 4): On 8 May 2019, the U.S. Embassy in Kiev issued a Demonstration Alert regarding Victory Day weekend, which reads in part as follows:

  • “Event: Starting on May 8 and continuing through May 12, numerous events and marches are scheduled throughout Ukraine during the Victory Day holiday weekend. These events are expected to attract anywhere from 5,000 to well over 100,000 people.”
  • 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.