This Travel Warning updates information on Eritrea's current security situation and reiterates the Department of State's advice that U.S. citizens defer non-essential travel to Eritrea due to restrictions on travel outside the capital city of Asmara and heightened tensions along the Eritrea-Ethiopia border. The United Nations Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE) is no longer monitoring the Eritrean-Ethiopian border. This Travel Warning supersedes the Travel Warning issued on January 18, 2008.
American citizens considering travel within Eritrea should be aware of the presence of large numbers of Eritrean and Ethiopian troops along the undemarcated Eritrean-Ethiopian border, and acute political tensions between the two countries. In March 2008, the Government of the State of Eritrea (GSE) restrictions on diesel fuel supplies caused UNMEE detachments to withdraw from the Temporary Security Zone (TSZ), leaving no international observers monitoring the border. U.S. citizens are strongly advised to avoid travel near the Eritrean-Ethiopian border.
The GSE continues to restrict the travel of all foreign nationals, including resident diplomats. These restrictions require all visitors and residents to apply with the GSE 10 days in advance for permission to travel outside Asmara city limits. As a result, the U.S. Embassy cannot provide consular assistance in an emergency outside of Asmara. Travelers also should be aware that that the GSE does not inform the U.S. Embassy when American citizens have been arrested or detained.
Americans currently living or traveling in Eritrea are strongly encouraged to register with the U.S. Embassy in Asmara in person or through the State Department's travel registration web site, https://travelregistration.state.gov, and to obtain updated information on travel and security within Eritrea. By registering, American citizens make it easier for the Embassy to contact them in case of an emergency and provide updates on the security situations. The U.S. Embassy is located at 179 Alaa Street, P.O. Box 211, Asmara; telephone (291-1) 12-00-04; fax (291-1) 124-255 and (291-1) 127-584; web site http://asmara.usembassy.gov/.