(US EMBASSY, ADDIS ABABA) – Subsequent to the Emergency Message posted below, the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa became aware of a Twitter message from Al-Shabaab claiming credit for the October 13 bombing in Addis Ababa and also claiming that two additional bombs were planted on Churchill Road and in the Piazza region of Addis Ababa. At this time, we cannot determine the credibility of this threat but, given its gravity, we are sharing it widely.
According to Ethiopian State Radio, two people were killed on Sunday, October 13, 2013 by a bomb blast. Quoting the Ethiopian National Intelligence and Security Service, State media reported that two unidentified individuals were killed in a residential house in the Bole District. In light of this report, and the fact that many American Citizens live in the Bole neighborhood of Addis Ababa, the U.S. Mission in Ethiopia is issuing this Security Message to remind U.S. citizens to practice good personal security habits. While there is no specific information available to suggest there are imminent threats to U.S. citizens or facilities, U.S. citizens should take every precaution to be aware of their surroundings and to adopt appropriate safety measures to protect themselves when traveling and when visiting public areas.
All U.S. citizens are reminded to practice good security at home and on the streets. Limit unnecessary travel to unfamiliar areas and be aware of surroundings. When at home be sure to lock all exterior doors and use your home security alarms, if available. Carry communications systems, e.g., a cell phone, at all times. Avoid large crowds or areas, including mobs, demonstrations, and protests.
If you are going to live in or travel to Ethiopia, please take the time to tell us about your trip by enrolling in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program. If you enroll, we can keep you up to date with important safety and security announcements. It will also help your friends and family get in touch with you in an emergency. You should remember to keep all of your information in STEP up to date. It is important during enrollment or updating of information to include your current phone number and current email address where you can be reached in case of an emergency.
You can stay in touch and get Embassy updates by checking U.S. Embassy Addis Ababa’s web site. You can also get global updates at the U.S. Department of State’s, Bureau of Consular Affairs website where you can find the currentWorldwide Caution, Travel Warning, Travel Alerts, and Country Specific Information. Follow us on Twitter and the Bureau of Consular Affairs page on Facebook as well, or you can download our free Smart Traveler iPhone App for travel information at your fingertips. If you don’t have internet access, current information on safety and security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States, or for callers from other countries, 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).
The U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa is located at Entoto Street, P.O. Box 1014. The Consular Section of the Embassy may be reached by telephone: +251-111-306000 or e-mail: [email protected], andis open Monday-Thursday, 7:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
For after-hours emergencies, U.S. citizens should call +251-111-306911 or 011-130-6000 and ask to speak with the duty officer.