The US State Department has issued a series of travel advisories for Americans planning to visit the Caribbean or South America this summer after countries in both regions reported a spike in crime.
The department has issued five updated travel advisories in the past three weeks for Haiti, Colombia, Jamaica, Chile and Peru, with Haiti receiving the highest-level advisory: Do Not Travel. The warning informs that Haiti has suffered “widespread” kidnappings, with “regular” victims including US citizens and ransom negotiations.
Americans have been harmed in these incidents, the department warned. The country has also experienced a spate of robberies and carjackings, as well as “mass murders” against suspected criminals.
Jamaica has been considering sending police and soldiers to Haiti to help the country deal with ongoing gang violence that has gripped the capital for months in response to an appeal for assistance from foreign troops, a request which the United States and Canada had rejected.
WOMAN FOUND DEAD IN YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, RANGER ARRESTS ARRESTED
However, Jamaica has its own crime problem. Colombia and Jamaica, which have seen increases in violent crime in recent months, have received level three advisories to “reconsider travel”.
The State Department has warned that Jamaica has for several years reported a homicide rate that ranks “among the highest in the Western Hemisphere.” US government personnel have been banned from traveling to different areas of the country and from riding buses or driving outside certain areas of Kingston at night.
Colombia has struggled with crime and political turmoil, with representatives from the government and the National Liberation Army (ELN), the country’s largest guerrilla group, meeting this month in Cuba for a third round of talks to discuss peace talks and ceasefires.
ITALIAN ANTICOCAINE DOG FINDS 3 TONS OF DRUGS HIDDEN IN BANANA SHIPMENT
The terrorist organizations ELN, Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – Popular Army (FARC-EP) and Segunda Marquetalia, as well as the Clan del Golfo and other criminal organizations “continue to operate and carry out attacks” in the country, according to the State Department.
The department warns that “rallies happen regularly”, with large public demonstrations on “a variety of political or economic issues” which can “close roads and highways”.
Chile and Peru have second-level alerts, suggesting “extra caution” as both countries continue to experience some political turmoil alike, with periodic large-scale demonstrations in cities.
HOSTEL FIRE KILLS AT LEAST 6 IN WATERFRONT TOWN AS POLICE INVESTIGATE POSSIBLE BURRES
In January, Peru had to evacuate hundreds of tourists from travel spots as protesters clashed with police over the handover of power in the country. Former Peruvian president Pedro Castillo resigned from office and handed over power to his deputy, Dina Boluarte, but citizens did not believe he had the country’s best interests at heart.
Protests continue, as does an elevated law on base crime that includes petty theft, auto theft, robbery and assault during daylight hours, according to the State Department. Part of the concern surrounds the Colombian-Peruvian border due to crime occurring in the region.
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP
The State Department suggests adhering to the department’s guidelines on travel to high-risk areas if Americans must visit these areas, and suggests enrolling in the Smart Traveler Enrollment program.