Mali travel advisory has been re-issued with updates to US government staffing restrictions

Don’t travel to Mali for crime, terrorism, and kidnapping.

On July 29, 2022, the Department ordered the departure of non-emergency U.S. government employees and family members due to the increased risk of terrorist attacks in areas frequented by Westerners. The US Embassy’s ability to provide emergency assistance to US citizens in Mali remains limited.

Country summary: Violent crimes such as kidnapping and armed robbery are common in Mali. Violent crime is a particular problem during local holidays and seasonal events in Bamako, its suburbs and southern regions of Mali. Roadblocks and random police checks are commonplace across the country, especially at night.

Terrorist and armed groups continue to plan kidnappings and attacks in Mali. They can attack with little or no warning, targeting nightclubs, hotels, restaurants, places of worship, international diplomatic missions, and other places frequented by Westerners. Attacks may target Malian government offices, infrastructure or locations frequented by Westerners.

The U.S. government is unable to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in much of Mali due to security concerns restricting U.S. government officials‘ travel outside of Bamako.

Due to risks to civil aviation operating within or near Mali, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued a Notice to Air Missions (NOTAM). For more information for US citizens, see the Federal Aviation Administration’s Prohibitions, Restrictions and Advisories.

Read the country information page for additional information on traveling to Mali.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has found Mali to be low on COVID-19. Visit the CDC page for the latest travel health information related to your trip.

If you decide to travel to Mali:

· Visit our website for travel to risk areas.

· Draw up a will and name suitable insurance beneficiaries and/or powers of attorney.

· Discuss a plan with your loved ones for the care/storage of children, pets, property, belongings, illiquid assets (collections, artwork, etc.), funeral requests, etc.

· Share important documents, credentials, and points of contact with loved ones so they can manage your affairs should you not be able to return to the United States as planned. A suggested list of such documents can be found here.

· Set up your own personal safety plan in consultation with your employer or host organisation, or consider contacting a professional safety organisation.

· Develop a communication plan with your family and/or your employer or host organization so they can monitor your safety and whereabouts when traveling through high-risk areas. This plan should indicate who you would contact first and how they should share the information.

· Identify key sources of possible help for you and your family in an emergency, such as: risk area.

· Ensure that a family member acts as a point of contact for hostage-takers, the media, US and host country authorities, and members of Congress if you are taken hostage or arrested.

· Establish a proof-of-life protocol with your family so that in the event of a kidnapping, your family will know specific questions and answers to ask the kidnappers to ensure you are alive and to rule out a scam.

· Leave DNA samples with your doctor in case your family needs access to them.

· Protect your passport and wallet when in crowded outdoor areas and open-air markets.

· Watch out for pickpockets, especially at night.

· Use all available security measures in your home or hotel, including locking doors and windows at all times and setting the alarm.

· If you are asked to stop by the police, stop only in well-lit areas or where multiple officers are stationed.

· Delete sensitive photos, comments, or other materials from your social media pages, cameras, laptops, and other electronic devices that may be considered controversial or provocative by local groups.

· Leave your expensive/sentimental stuff behind.

· Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive alerts and make it easier to find you in an emergency.

· Follow the State Department on Facebook and Twitter.

· Check the Country Security Report for Mali.

· Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Check the traveler checklist.

Read the State Department‘s COVID-19 page before planning international travel and see the Embassy’s COVID-19 page for country-specific COVID-19 information.

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