US, UK missions issue safety advisories for its nationals in Pakistan

US UK nationals Pakistan
  • US bars its citizens and staff members from visiting Islamabad’s Marriott Hotel.
  • UK bars its citizens from traveling to the KP or Balochistan provinces.

Following the travel advisory issued by the US embassy in Islamabad prohibiting its staff from visiting Islamabad’s Marriott Hotel “due to possible attack”, the UK also issued a travel advisory to its citizens in the wake of “information about a possible attack on the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad”.

A security alert issued on Sunday by the US embassy in Islamabad said that the US government is “aware of information” that “unknown individuals are possibly plotting to attack Americans at the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad sometime during the holidays”.

Effective immediately, the US embassy in Islamabad prohibited all American staff from visiting the hotel.

The advisory further read that as Islamabad has been placed on a Red Alert citing security concerns while banning all public gatherings, the embassy is urging all Mission personnel to refrain from non-essential, unofficial travel in Islamabad throughout the holiday season.

Similarly, the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) of the UK also issued a travel advisory to British nationals on Sunday.

In its travel advisory, the FCDO advised against all travel to the districts of Bajaur, Mohmand, Khyber, Orakzai, Kurram, North Waziristan, and South Waziristan in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

It also advised the British citizens against traveling to the districts of Charsadda, Kohat, Tank, Bannu, Lakki, Dera Ismail Khan, Swat, Buner, and Lower Dir in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa; the city and district of Peshawar; travel on the N45 road, from the north of the Mardan ring-road to the edge of the district of Chitral.

The FCDO also advised British nationals against travelling to Balochistan province, excluding the southern coast of Balochistan, besides the section of the N35 (or Karakoram Highway) between the Mansehra ring road and the N15/N35 Chilas interchange; and within 10 miles of the Line of Control.

In addition, it advised British nationals in Islamabad to exercise “additional vigilance” and minimize exposure to densely populated and unsecured areas that pose a higher risk.

It is pertinent to be mentioned that the latest security alerts have come following the recent terrorist attack in the I-10 Sector of Islamabad, where a suicide bomber blew him up during police checking, resulting in the martyrdom of a policeman and injuring six others.