I got this warning from the US Embassy earlier today. We have many readers that live and or visit the Visayas region, so I thought it might be good to share it here. Remember also, in the Philippines, all foreigners are usually considered “Americans” so if you are not American but from a Western aligned country, you are likely at risk too. This is important to keep in mind.
Security Message for U.S. Citizens: Travel Advisory for Central Visayas
THE EMBASSY OF THE UNITED STATES IS TRANSMITTING THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION AS A PUBLIC SERVICE TO U.S. CITIZENS IN THE PHILIPPINES. PLEASE DISSEMINATE THIS MESSAGE TO ALL U.S. CITIZENS IN YOUR ORGANIZATION OR NEIGHBORHOOD. THANK YOU.
The U.S. Embassy has received unsubstantiated yet credible information that terrorist groups may attempt to conduct kidnappings in Central Visayas, which includes both Cebu and Bohol provinces. U.S. citizens are advised to carefully consider this information as you make your travel plans, and to review personal security plans, avoid large crowds and gatherings, and remain vigilant at all times.
The U.S. Embassy wishes to remind U.S. citizens of the most recent Worldwide Caution, dated March 7, 2017, which indicates there is an ongoing threat of terrorist actions and violence against U.S. citizens and interests abroad, including the Philippines. Extremists have targeted sporting events, theaters, markets, mass transportation systems–including airlines, and other public venues where large crowds gather. Crowded nightclubs, shopping malls, buses and popular restaurants have also been targets. U.S. citizens should be mindful of the importance of taking preventative measures to ensure their safety and security while traveling and residing in the Philippines.
Stay safe, everybody.