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Critical Advisory for U.S. Citizens in Israel, West Bank, and Gaza

Travel Advisory for Gaza
November 14: March in favour of Israel through Washington, D.C.| Photograph: tedeytan, CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

The U.S. Department of State emphasizes the critical need for heightened vigilance among U.S. citizens residing in or travelling to Israel, the West Bank, and Travel Advisory for Gaza due to ongoing security concerns in Israel. The unpredictable security environment prompted by sudden political shifts and recent escalations underscores the necessity for Americans to stay informed and proactive regarding their personal safety measures.

In light of security concerns in Israel, U.S. citizens should rigorously adhere to the guidelines set forth in the current Travel Advisory for Gaza, the West Bank, and Israel. Military operations as well as sporadic rocket and mortar fire serve as a stark reminder of the volatility in the region, particularly in Gaza and the surrounding areas.

Terrorist undertakings by extremist factions including lone actors are a persistent threat that can manifest anywhere and at any time. Common targets include places frequented by tourists, various forms of public transportation, busy marketplaces, shopping centers, and government establishments. It is essential that individuals remain mindful of their surroundings and maintain a close watch on local media reports as well as security alerts issued by the U.S. Embassy.

For those intending to depart from Gaza through Rafah Crossing into Egypt, it is advised to monitor updates provided by the Palestinian General Authority for Crossings and Borders accessible on their official Facebook page which furnishes regularly updated lists of approved individuals for crossing.

U.S. citizens who haven’t touched base with the State Department should forward pertinent details including a copy of their travel documents and supporting relationship evidence or explanations to JerusalemACS@state.gov if they require aid with travel arrangements out of Gaza.

It’s important to note that while seeking exit through Egypt after being allowed through Rafah, one is typically granted a temporary 72-hour Egyptian visa; thus, it becomes imperative to establish further transit plans from Egypt within this narrow time window.

As situations unfold from time to time with crossings lists being updated since November 1, U.S. citizens listed therein are urged to promptly make use of any opportunity presented for crossing while it remains an available option — continuity of access at these borders is not assured.

Persistent diplomatic endeavours are underway involving cooperative efforts between Egypt, Israel, and other stakeholders aiming to facilitate safe transmission for U.S. citizens as well as Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) and their immediate families across affected borders under current volatile conditions.

The commitment from the U.S. government extends beyond mere advisories; constant updates will continue to be communicated through available channels to ensure Americans are kept abreast of progressions concerning their welfare abroad.

Immediate Family Members of U.S. Citizens

Immediate family members of U.S. citizens are comprised of:

  • Spouses: Legally married partners of U.S. citizens.
  • Unmarried Children Under 21: Biological, adopted, or stepchildren who are not married and are below the age of 21.
  • Parents: Biological or adoptive parents of U.S. citizens, provided the U.S. citizen is 21 years of age or older.

For U.S. citizens who are under the age of 21, immediate family also extends to include:

  • Unmarried Siblings Under 21: Brothers and sisters who are not married and are below the age of 21.

Immediate Family Members of Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs)

The immediate family members of Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) consist of:

  • Spouses: The legally married partners of LPRs.
  • Unmarried Children Under 21: Biological, adopted, or stepchildren who are unmarried and under the age limit of 21 years.

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