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Daily Israel Report

Israelis Warned Away from Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan

The National Security Council Counter-Terrorism Bureau has continued its travel warning for Israeli tourists to Turkey.
By Chana Ya'ar
First Publish: 7/20/2011, 9:27 AM / Last Update: 7/20/2011, 9:33 AM

Flash 90

Israelis looking for hot spots in which to spent their summer vacation should avoid Turkey.

A February travel warning from the National Security Council Counter-Terrorism Bureau was renewed this week for Israel's former Middle Eastern ally. A similar alert was also renewed for Azerbaijan and Georgia.

For those Israelis who decide that in spite of the warning they must travel to these countries for business or other reasons, the NSCCTB made the following recommendations:

1.Be highly sensitive and aware at tourist sites and venues;
2.Avoid places frequented by large numbers of Israelis;
3.Decline unexpected and tempting business or other proposals
4.Decline unexpected invitations to meetings, especially in remote locales and/or at night;
5.Avoid admitting suspect or unexpected visitors into hotel rooms and/or residence, and
6.During prolonged stay in these countries, vary daily routines by changing regular itineraries, restaurants, tourism venues and hotels.

The recommendations are consistent with those issued in conjunction with similar travel alerts in the past.

The NSCCTB cited a “continuous threat to attack Israeli targets” in Turkey, Georgia and Azerbaijan as the reason for the continued travel warning.

A similar travel warning was issued for Turkey a year ago following the Mavi Marmara flotilla incident in which nine terror activists were killed by Israeli navy commandos. The terrorists attacked the commandos when they boarded the vessel to redirect it to Ashdod port after the six-ship flotilla had repeatedly ignored requests to change course on its own.

Tourism to Turkey, which has upgraded its relations with Iran, had already dropped dramatically even prior to last year's warning.

An April travel warning to the countries of the Mediterranean Sea basin and the Far East – issued ahead of and during the Passover holiday – has meanwhile been canceled.