Aussies told to evacuate from Gaza…immediately

July 12, 2014 by J-Wire Staff
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The Australian Department  of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Canberra has issued a directive to all Australians currently in Gaza to evacuate immediately with the Australian embassy in Tel Aviv on standby to arrane travel plans to Amman in Jordan.

DFATDFAT has issued the following  travel advice:

This advice contains new information in the Summary and under Civil unrest/political tension (Australians in the Gaza Strip should depart immediately. The Australian Embassy in Tel Aviv is arranging a one-off assisted departure of Australians who wish to depart from the Gaza Strip. There are no plans for any further assisted departures from Gaza. The Australian Embassy will arrange for transport to Amman. Once in Amman, Australians will be responsible for their own costs and arrangements, including for onward travel. Australians seeking assistance to depart the Gaza Strip should immediately contact the 24 hour Consular Emergency Centre in Canberra on +61 2 6261 3305 or the Australian Embassy in Tel Aviv on (972 3) 693 5000 to register their details). We strongly advise Australians to reconsider their need to travel to areas within 40kms of the border with the Gaza Strip. The overall level of advice remains at exercise a high degree of caution in Israel due to the threat of terrorist attack and the threat of rocket fire. We continue to advise Australians to reconsider their need to travel to the West Bank and not to travel to the Gaza Strip and surrounding areas in southern Israel.

 

  • We advise Australians to exercise a high degree of caution in Israel due to the threat of terrorist attack and the threat of rocket fire. Terrorist attacks could occur at anytime and anywhere in Israel.
  • There has been increased rocket fire from Gaza into Israel, including Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and most of southern Israel in July 2014. Australians should familiarise themselves with emergency procedures and how to respond to air raid sirens, including knowing the location of their nearest emergency shelters.
  • We strongly advise Australians to reconsider their need to travel to areas of Israel within 40kms of the border with the Gaza Strip due to the continuing threat of rocket attack. This includes the cities of Sderot, Ashkelon, Ashdod and Be’er Sheva.
  • The Israel Defense Force’s Home Front Command website provides information on preparedness and on how to respond in the event of an emergency, including rocket or missile attacks.
  • Pay close attention to your personal security at all times. You should monitor local media and official announcements, as the security situation may change unexpectedly. In the event of a heightened security alert, security forces may respond by establishing additional roadblocks and by increasing the presence of security forces on the streets. Vehicle inspections may also be conducted and there may be heightened scrutiny of individuals and their belongings.
  • Australians are reminded to exercise a high degree of caution when using public transport in Israel. Due to safety and security concerns, Australian Government officials and dependants have been advised not to use public transport, except taxis, in Israel. In planning your activities, consider the kinds of places known to be terrorist targets and the level of security provided.
  • We advise you reconsider your need to travel to the West Bank, including Bethlehem, East Jerusalem, Jericho and Ramallah due to the unpredictable security situation. There are ongoing tensions and violence between Israelis and Palestinians in the West Bank and Jerusalem. There were violent clashes in the Shuafat and Beit Hanina neighbourhoods of East Jerusalem in July 2014, which have resulted in injuries. Australians should avoid these areas until further notice. See more information on the West Bank in the Safety and security: Civil unrest/political tension.
  • We strongly advise you not to travel to the Gaza Strip because of the extremely dangerous and unpredictable security situation and the possibility of further Israeli military operations. Australians in the Gaza Strip should depart immediately. The security environment in Gaza may further deteriorate. A number of civilians have been killed and injured during the current military confrontation.
  • The Australian Embassy in Tel Aviv is arranging a one-off assisted departure of Australians who wish to depart from the Gaza Strip. There are no plans for any further assisted departures from Gaza. The Australian Embassy will arrange for transport to Amman. Once in Amman, Australians will be responsible for their own costs and arrangements, including for onward travel. Australians seeking assistance to depart the Gaza Strip should immediately contact the 24 hour Consular Emergency Centre in Canberra on +61 2 6261 3305 or the Australian Embassy in Tel Aviv on (972 3) 693 5000 to register their details.
  • We strongly advise you not to travel to areas around the Gaza Strip in southern Israel due to the high threat of mortar and rocket fire. See more information on the Gaza Strip under Safety and security: Civil unrest/political tension.
  • Australians should avoid all protests, demonstrations and political rallies as they may turn violent. You are strongly encouraged to maintain a heightened level of awareness of current events and security developments.
  • The security situation in the region bordering Egypt could deteriorate at any time. Recent security incidents have resulted in deaths and injuries, and the area remains dangerous. There is a continuing threat of rocket attack in this area.
  • The security situation in the northern region could deteriorate without notice. The border region with Lebanon and Syria is subject to violent incidents, and there is an ongoing threat of rocket attack, artillery and small arms fire.
  • We advise Australians to avoid the immediate border region with Syria due to the increased presence of militants in the area.
  • In light of the threat of terrorist activity, possible military action or other violent incidents in Israel, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, we strongly recommend that youregister your travel and contact details with us, so we can contact you in an emerge

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