Reports of military and terrorist activity at and near Saudi Arabia’s border with Yemen continue. On August 26, U.S. Mission Saudi Arabia received multiple reports of what appear to have been one or more missiles fired in the direction of Jazan, a coastal city in the extreme south of Saudi Arabia. Houthi forces have subsequently claimed responsibility for the launch of what they claim to have been a Scud missile from within Yemen.
The Jazan airport was closed for about three and a half hours this morning, but has returned to normal operation.
U.S. Mission Saudi Arabia has placed the cities of Jazan and Najran on the list of areas off-limits to U.S. Government personnel. That list also includes restrictions on travel anywhere within 50 miles of the Yemeni border, as well as the Governorate of Al Hasa and the city of Qatif and its surrounding suburbs in the Eastern Province. The Eastern Province warning is based on terrorist acts that have been carried out in the recent past. U.S. citizens are urged to carefully consider the risks of travel to these areas.
The Embassy reminds you that regardless of location, it is always advisable to keep your security and situational awareness levels high.
Please follow these good personal security practices:
Avoid crowds or large gatherings when traveling in public;
Know where you are going and have a plan of what to do in the event you encounter demonstrations or violence;
Identify safe areas (for example police stations, hospitals, Saudi Government buildings) in your area and how to get to them quickly;
Tell co-workers or neighbors where you’re going and when you intend to return;
Minimize your profile while in public;
Always carry a cell phone and make sure you have emergency numbers pre-programmed into your phone such as U.S. Consulate General in Dhahran (013-330-3200), the U.S. Embassy in Riyadh (011-488-3800), and U.S. Consulate General in Jeddah (012-667-0080). The emergency number for the Saudi Police, Fire, and Rescue is 999. Please keep in mind that most emergency dispatchers and personnel do not speak English;
Be prepared to postpone or cancel activities for personal safety concerns;
Report concerns you may have to the U.S. Embassy in Riyadh, the U.S. Consulate General in Dhahran, or the U.S. Consulate General in Jeddah.
For further information:
- See the State Department’s travel website for the Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Saudi Arabia Country Specific Information.
- Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
- Contact the U.S. Embassy in Saudi Arabia located at Abdullah Ibn Huthafah Al-Sahmi Street, Diplomatic Quarter, at +966 11 488 3800, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday. After-hours emergency number for U.S. citizens is +966 11 488 3800.
- Call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
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