US embassy urges its citizens in Lebanon to exercise heightened security awareness

JANUARY 25, 2015 (REFERRING TO THE NATIONAL NEWS AGENCY – LEBANON) The US embassy in Lebanon issued the following statement on Sunday:

“The U.S. Embassy in Beirut advises U.S. citizens in Lebanon of reports in local media on January 23, 2015 that a suspected suicide bomber confessed to authorities that future targets had allegedly included Casino du Liban in Jounieh, and Le Royal Hotel in Dbayeh.

After a period of relative calm, this event serves as an important reminder of the ongoing security concerns in Lebanon — even in areas which are normally considered less dangerous. While the security forces of Lebanon have had a number of important successes in preventing suicide attacks, the U.S. Embassy continues to urge U.S. citizens in Lebanon to exercise heightened security awareness of their surroundings at all times, and take appropriate measures to ensure their safety and security. Be conscious of your personal security at all times. The Embassy urges all U.S. citizens in Lebanon to monitor the media for the latest developments.

The U.S. Embassy further urges all U.S. citizens to avoid all travel to Lebanon due to safety and security concerns. The current travel warning can be seen at this link: Travel Warning for Lebanon. U.S. citizens living and working in Lebanon should understand that they accept risks in remaining and should carefully consider those risks. The ability of U.S. government personnel to reach travelers to provide emergency services may be limited.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Lebanon enroll in the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency. If you don’t have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.”