Israel warns of Europe terror threat in holiday advisory

Ahead of the mass exodus of Israelis looking to exploit remaining days of annual leave during the High Holidays, the National Security Council’s Counter-terrorism Bureau has issued a number of travel warnings for those seeking to travel abroad.

The travel warnings, which the bureau said are based on intelligence reports and credible information, were issued due to the real likelihood of threats against Israeli and Jewish targets across the world. Most of the travel warnings relate to Arab and “enemy” countries.

Most notable, however, is the bureau’s warnings in relation to visiting Western and Northern Europe.

In the latest warnings, Western and Northern Europe join a list of countries threatened by the Islamic State’s “war of survival.” The others are immediate neighbours of Iraq and Syria: Turkey, Jordan and Egypt.

The bureau warns Israeli tourists to stay vigilant in these countries, particularly in areas of high foot traffic during the festivals, including sports venues, museums, shopping areas, hotels and places of worship.

A severe travel warning is in place for Israeli tourists planning to visit the Sinai Peninsula and mainland Egypt. The Sinai’s beach resorts have long been popular travel destinations for Israeli sightseers.

The current travel warning for Sinai is Level 1, the highest warning level issued by the bureau. It is recommended that Israelis avoid all travel to the area due to the “very high concrete threat.” Israelis currently in the Sinai are recommended “to leave immediately.”

The warning level for the Egyptian mainland is Level 3, for which Israelis have also been advised not to visit.

Travel warnings remain in place for Turkey, Jordan, southern Philippines and “enemy” countries. Israeli law prohibits its citizens from travelling to Syria, Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Yemen and Saudi Arabia.

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