TEL AVIV — The Counter-Terrorism Bureau (CTB) of the Israeli National Security Council published its semi-annual travel advisory Monday urging citizens to stay away from 41 countries, nearly a quarter of UN member states.
In advance of the upcoming Passover and summer holiday season, CTB notes that warnings are based on "solid and reliable information, which reflects a real threat, based on the intelligence picture for a specific period."
Rankings range from Code Burgundy — countries where citizens are either forbidden or strongly urged not to visit due to "very high concrete threat" — to Code Yellow, where "ongoing potential threats" warrant essential travel only.
By law, Israelis are forbidden to travel to six (Code Burgundy) countries defined as enemy states: Iran, Lebanon, Iraq (including Kurdistan), Saudi Arabia, Syria and Yemen.
Countries designated as Code Red, or high concrete threat, include Algeria, Burkina Faso, Djibouti, Indonesia, Ivory Coast, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritania, Pakistan, Togo and Tunisia.
"Any Israelis present in these countries are advised to leave immediately," the bureau urged.
As for countries designated as Code Orange — those posing a "basic concrete threat" — CTB cited United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, Egypt and Qatar.
Israelis are urged to avoid visiting those countries.
Among Code Yellow countries — the lowest travel advisory ranking constituting those posing "ongoing potential threats" — are Azerbaijan, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Oman and Turkey. CTB reminded Israelis that travel to those countries is at their own risk.
Opall-Rome is Israel bureau chief for Defense News. She has been covering U.S.-Israel strategic cooperation, Mideast security and missile defense since May 1988. She lives north of Tel Aviv. Visit her website at www.opall-rome.com.