The United States warned its citizens on Friday to exercise “increased caution” when visiting India due to “crime and terrorism,” and advised them not to visit the union territory of Jammu and Kashmir.
The Department of State maintains and issues travel advisories in the United States, which are color-coded from 1 to 4, with 1 (white) being the safest place to travel and 4 (red) being the no-travel zone advised for its citizens. This division was established several years ago.
In a new travel advisory issued on Friday, the US State Department reduced the India Travel Advisory Level from one to four, with four being the highest.
In a separate advisory issued a day earlier, the State Department placed Pakistan on Level 3 and advised its citizens to reconsider travelling, particularly to restive provinces, due to terrorism and sectarian violence. “Be extra cautious in India due to crime and terrorism,” the State Department advised.
“Because of terrorism and civil turmoil, do not travel to Jammu and Kashmir’s union territory (excluding the eastern Ladakh area and its capital, Leh).” It said that “there is a possibility of armed confrontation within 10 kilometres of the India-Pakistan border.”
“Indian authorities say rape as one of the fastest rising crimes in India,” according to the travel warning. Violent crime, such as sexual assault, has happened in tourist areas and elsewhere.” “Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting tourist attractions, transit hubs, markets/shopping malls, and government buildings,” according to the statement.
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