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Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Baghdad (Iraq), Threat of Kidnapping in Karada District

Near East > Iraq > Baghdad

The U.S. Embassy in Baghdad has received information that as of late December 2011, militants were possibly planning to kidnap a U.S. person traveling through the Karada District of Baghdad, Iraq, using individuals posing as security personnel.   U.S. citizens in all areas of Iraq should continue to maintain a heightened sense of security awareness and take appropriate measures to enhance personal and operational security.  We request that all employers of U.S. citizens please repeat this warning to your U.S. employees and urge them to continue to limit their travel to only that which is most essential.  We also urge all U.S. citizens, if they have not done so already, to enroll with the U.S. Embassy’s Consular Section.  Please monitor the U.S. Embassy’s website for emergency messages for U.S. citizens.

U.S. citizens traveling and residing abroad should enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  U.S. citizens without internet access may enroll directly at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate at their destination.  By enrolling, U.S. citizens make it easier for the Embassy to contact them in case of emergency.

U.S. citizens may contact the U.S. Embassy, located in the International Zone, via e-mail to  In the event of a U.S. citizen emergency please contact:  0770-443-1286 (from Iraq) or 011-964-770-443-1286 (from the United States).

U.S. citizens traveling abroad should regularly monitor the U.S. Department of State's, Bureau of Consular Affairs website, where the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Country Specific Information can be found.  The U.S. Embassy also encourages U.S. citizens to review "A Safe Trip Abroad,” which includes valuable security information for those living and traveling abroad.  Follow us on Twitter and the Bureau of Consular Affairs page on Facebook as well.  You can also download our free Smart Traveler iPhone App to have travel information at your fingertips.  In addition to information on the Internet, travelers may obtain the latest information on security conditions by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada, or outside the United States and Canada on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).