The United States embassy in Manila has once again warned Americans against travel to Davao Region, Maguindanao and the provinces of North Cotabato, South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat and Sarangani.
The security message issued Thursday (10 October 2013) noted the presence of “individuals associated with known extremist and insurgent groups” who are “believed to have been conducting surveillance on a number of public locations in these areas, as possible targets of interest.”
“Extremists may elect to use conventional or non-conventional weapons, and target both official and private interests,” the security message said. “Examples of such targets include high-profile sporting events, residential areas, business offices, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, schools, public areas, and other destinations, whether frequented by foreigners or locals.”
The US embassy said Americans residing in Southern Mindanao must “exercise extreme caution and re-evaluate their personal safety situation.” The US embassy also said that it has “placed restrictions on all US government travel to these areas.”
“The Embassy wishes to remind you to remain vigilant and maintain an appropriate level of personal security in all circumstances by reviewing your personal safety plans; remaining aware of your surroundings, including local events; and monitoring local news sources for updates,” the US embassy said.
In July, US, Australia and Canada also issued warnings against traveling to Mindanao over threats of terrorism and kidnapping. | NewsDesk