Algeria travel advice

Terrorism

There is a high threat from terrorism in Algeria. There is a threat of retaliatory attacks following the French intervention in Mali.You should take great care at all times. Although major cities are heavily policed, terrorist attacks could take place and may be indiscriminate, including in places frequented by foreigners like restaurants, hotels and shopping centres.

The main terrorist threat is from Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQ-M) and other regional Islamist groups including Al Murabitun, a merger of the Movement for Unity and Jihad in West Africa (MUJWA) and Belmokhtar’s group. These groups aspire to establish Islamic law in Algeria and the wider region and to attack western interests. The groups operate in the border areas of Algeria, Mali and Libya. However, they pose a threat across Algeria and have been active across the south, central and north eastern areas of the country.

Attacks frequently target Algerian government interests, security forces, and economic interests including oil and gas facilities. An AQ-M attack on Algerian armed forces in Tizi Ouzou on 19 April 2014 killed 11 soldiers. Western interests have also been targeted, including an attack in January 2013 against a gas installation near the town of In Amenas, close to the border with Libya. A number of foreign workers, including British nationals, were killed in this attack. The Algerian authorities continue to conduct successful and effective counter terrorism operations to disrupt terrorist activity but there remains an ongoing threat of further attacks and you should remain vigilant at all times.

Kidnap

There is a high threat of kidnap against Westerners, particularly in the areas where the FCO advise against all or all but essential travel where terrorist groups are more active. Terrorists groups including AQ-M and MUJWA have kidnapped Westerners, Algerian government officials and civilians in Algeria and the wider Sahel region for financial gain and for political leverage. Further kidnaps attacks are likely.

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