Entry/Exit: UPDATE 1: Operations at US Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq, proceeding normally Dec. 30 following media reports of staff evacuation Dec. 29.

Severity: Warning Alert

This alert affects Baghdad

This alert began 30 Dec 2019 15:16 GMT and is scheduled to expire 30 Dec 2019 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: US embassy operations
  • Location: Baghdad (map)
  • Date: Dec. 30

Summary
Operations at the US Embassy in Baghdad are uninterrupted Dec. 30 following media reports Dec. 29 of a staff evacuation. Several media reports indicated Dec. 29 that the US embassy was evacuating its staff following airstrikes against several Kata'ib Hizballah or Hizballah Brigades' military positions in Iraq and Syria, Dec. 29.

Background and Analysis
Kata'ib Hizballah is a Shi'a paramilitary group that is closely linked to Iran. The US airstrikes killed 25 members of the Shi'a group; Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis - one of its prominent leaders - has vowed to avenge their deaths.

The recent security incidents take place amid ongoing heightened tensions between Iran, the US, and its allies. Several similar incidents have occurred in recent months in Baghdad. On Oct. 30, two mortar shells struck the International (Green) Zone, killing an Iraqi soldier and injuring several others. On Nov. 29, a mortar shell struck the Green Zone but left no casualties.

These incidents also coincide with ongoing violent nationwide anti-government protests that began Oct. 1. Clashes between protesters and security forces have left hundreds of protesters dead and thousands injured. The ongoing demonstrations have raised concerns that militia and militant groups may exploit the instability to increase the pace and severity of their attacks.

Advice
If operating in Iraq, exercise extreme caution. Maintain contact with your diplomatic mission. Carry proper identification and travel documents. Remain courteous and cooperative if approached and questioned by security personnel. Remain alert to your surroundings at all times.

Resource
US Embassy and Consulates in Iraq: iq.usembassy.gov


Resilience against the impact of global threats will depend on how prepared you are and how fast you can respond. Licensed users can visit Worldcue® Global Control Center at https://gcc.worldcue.com to immediately assess the impact of this Alert on your people, facilities and supply chain.

Traveling employees and expatriates may visit their personal traveler website at https://traveler.worldcue.com to change alert delivery preferences, modify itineraries and update personal profiles.

The information in this document is provided by WorldAware. While WorldAware constantly monitors the changing world situation and strives for accuracy and timeliness, this information is provided to you on an "as is" basis, and your use of this information is at your own risk.