State Department Rates Every Country's Safety in New Travel Advisory System

State Department Rates Every Country's Safety in New Travel Advisory System

The US on Wednesday issued a new travel advisory for countries including India, which its officials said is "user friendly" as it is based on ready-to-understand level of advice ranging from one to four.

Rwanda is the only East African country given a level-one rating, under which USA citizens are advised to "exercise normal precautions". "Do not travel to Balochistan province, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) province, the Federally Administered Tribal Areas, (FATA) and the Azad Kashmir area due to terrorism and armed conflict", the State Department said.

Additionally, several Mexican states were rated Tier 3, meaning Americans should "reconsider travel" to the areas.

In addition, the new system will explain why the advisory was made, with one-letter logos: C for crime, T for terrorism, U for civil unrest, H for health risks, N for natural disasters, E for special events like an election and O for some other reason.

Ms Bernier-Toth, the acting deputy assistant secretary for Overseas Citizens Services, noted that the method of assessing travel risks has not changed.

The advisory said in northeastern states, incidents of violence by ethnic insurgent groups.

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The travel advisory for Mexico also warned US tourists to "exercise increased caution" - the second-lowest rating - in the country when visiting. Level three countries include Russian Federation, due to civil unrest in certain areas, and Venezuela, due to crime and a limited ability of the U.S. to provide assistance to citizens.

Northeastern states also find a specific mention in the advisory.

"Terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in Pakistan". The states mentioned include "eastern Maharashtra and northern Telangana through western West Bengal" as well as " rural parts of Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand and. the borders of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, and Odisha".

Right now, Mexico ranks as a level two overall, but the state of Tamaulipas is a level four due to crime. North Korea is the exception to that rule, since the United States banned travel on American passports to that country over the summer.

While alerts were generally shorter-term or related to specific events, and warnings were meant to be stronger, the new system is created to provide additional clarity and guidance.

Besides Pakistan, ten war zones and failed states are ranked Level Four with "Do Not Travel" instruction including Afghanistan, Central African Republic, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

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