US warns citizens about terror strikes in India, Pak
The United States on Tuesday issued a global travel alert, including on visiting India and Pakistan, for its citizens in view of the increasing threat from terrorist organisations like Al Qaeda and the Taliban.
In its latest travel alert titled 'worldwide caution', the State Department expressed concern over continued threat of terrorist attacks, demonstrations and other violent actions against US citizens and interests overseas including India and Pakistan.
"In India, there is a continuing threat of terrorism as attacks have randomly targeted public places frequented by Westerners, including luxury and other hotels, trains, train stations, markets, cinemas, mosques, and restaurants in large urban areas," the travel alert said.
Image: A security personnel is reflected in a mirror used to check beneath cars at the entrance to Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, the main venue for the Commonwealth Games
Photographs: Reinhard Krause/Reuters
'Suicide bombing attacks continue to occur in Pak'
"Examples of potential attacks in South Asian states include Pakistan, where a number of extremist groups continue to target US and other Western citizens and interests, and Pakistani government officials and military/law enforcement personnel," it said.
"Suicide bombing attacks continue to occur throughout the country on a regular basis, often targeting government authorities such as police checkpoints and military installations, as well as public areas such as mosques, and shopping areas," the alert said.
The State Department said that current information suggests that Al Qaeda and affiliated organisations continue to plan terrorist attacks against US interests in multiple regions, including Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.
Image: Villagers stand beside bodies of blast victims, near the site of a suicide bomb attack, in the town of Lakki Marwat in Pakistan
Photographs: Mustansar Baloch/Reuters
'Extremists may use non-conventional weapons'
These attacks may employ a wide variety of tactics including suicide operations, assassinations, kidnappings, hijackings, and bombings.
"Extremists may elect to use conventional or non-conventional weapons, and target both official and private interests. Examples of such targets include high-profile sporting events, residential areas, business offices, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, schools, public areas, and locales where US citizens gather in large numbers, including during holidays," it said.
US citizens are reminded of the potential for terrorists to attack public transportation systems and other tourist infrastructure. Extremists have targeted and attacked subway and rail systems, as well as aviation and maritime services.
Image: An American tourist in a Santa t-shirt poses for a photo in front of a Christmas tree
Photographs: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters
'Al Qaeda plans terrorist attacks against US'
In the past several years, these types of attacks have occurred in cities such as Moscow, London, Madrid, and Glasgow, the alert said.
"Current information suggests that Al Qaeda and affiliated organisations continue to plan terrorist attacks against US and Western interests in Europe. European governments have taken action to guard against terrorist attacks and some have spoken publicly about the heightened threat conditions. In the past several years, attacks have been planned or occurred in various European cities," it said.
Image: A firefighter attempts to put out a fire in a burning car in Stockholm after a blast