Security Message for U.S. Citizens: Security Reminders for New Year’s Celebrations

The U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi and U.S. Consulate General in Dubai would like to remind U.S. citizens of the continuing need to implement sound personal security practices as they go about their daily lives and also as they celebrate the New Year. U.S. citizens are strongly encouraged to maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to bolster their personal security, especially when joining large, public New Year’s celebrations. Please be aware of the danger a lone wolf-type attack poses to groups of people celebrating in congested public spaces. ISIS and other extremist groups have continued to call for attacks on Western interests. U.S. citizens should be alert to the possibility that extremists may conduct attacks with little or no warning. Terrorists may employ a wide variety of tactics, using conventional and non-conventional weapons, and targeting official and private interests.

U.S. citizens should exercise vigilance when attending large, public holiday events, visiting tourist sites, using public transportation, and frequenting places of worship, restaurants, hotels, and other public locations. Be aware of your immediate surroundings and avoid large crowds, when possible. If you find yourself in a crowded area, think through in advance the quickest way to remove yourself on short notice, if necessary. Review available local security information. U.S. citizens should:

  • Follow the instructions of local authorities. Monitor media and local information sources and consider updated information when making personal travel plans and activities.
  • Be prepared for additional security screening and unexpected disruptions.
  • Stay in touch with your family members and ensure they know how to reach you in the event of an emergency.
  • Have an emergency plan of action ready.
  • If you join a public celebration, be aware that crowds are volatile; if there is a disturbance, the safest course of action is to leave the area in an orderly way.

For further information:

  • See the Department of State’s travel website for the Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Country Specific Information.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Contact the U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi, located at Embassies District, Plot 38, Sector W59-02, Street No. 4, and P.O. Box 4009 or AbuDhabiACS@state.gov. The telephone number is (971) (2) 414-2200. For after-hours emergencies in Abu Dhabi, contact the Duty Officer at (971) (2) 414-2200.
  • Contact the U.S. Consulate General in Dubai, located at the corner of Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed and Al Seef Streets on the Dubai Creek in Bur Dubai or DubaiACS@state.gov. The telephone number is (971) (4) 309-4000. For after-hours emergencies involving U.S. citizens in Dubai, contact the Duty Officer at (971)(4) 309-4000.
  • Call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
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