ON TERROR ALERT: Canada, UK, Australia, Ireland Issues Security Advisory Differently To Citizens – SIXT-MEDIA LANE CONSULT

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Avoid non-essential travel to Nigeria, including in Abuja, due to the unpredictable security situation throughout the country and the significant risk of terrorism, crime, inter-communal clashes, armed attacks and kidnappings.

Terrorism threat in Abuja

There is an increased threat of terrorist attack in Abuja. Attacks by terrorist groups may occur in other large cities like Lagos.

be extremely vigilant
limit your movements
exercise caution and keep a low profile
monitor local media to stay informed on the evolving situation
follow the instructions of local authorities

Forested areas

Nigerian authorities are conducting counter-terrorism operations in forested areas in and around Abuja, and in the Federal Capital territory. Avoid walking and hiking in these areas.

Northwestern and Northeastern states
There is a threat of terrorism, banditry and kidnapping in the following northwestern and northeastern states:


Bandit groups are increasingly active in the northwest, including in Kaduna state. Violent attacks involving gunfire and explosives, as well as kidnappings, are frequent. They have targeted:
-transportation hubs and networks
-local communities

A state of emergency has been in effect since 2013 in the states of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe to account for the increase in incidents of terrorism in the area. Additional security personnel have been deployed to these states. Curfews are also in effect in cities across these states and in Maiduguri. Other curfews could be imposed in other cities in northern Nigeria or could change on short notice.

Local authorities could also interrupt telecommunication services in the northeastern states without notice and for indeterminate periods of time. Neighbouring states could also be affected by these service disruptions.

States of Plateau and Taraba
The states of Plateau and of Taraba are affected by sporadic episodes of inter-communal and sectarian violence. Since early 2022, there has been an increase in violent incidents, including bomb attacks which resulted in a large number of casualties. There has also been an increase in kidnapping cases in Plateau State. Further attacks and kidnappings are likely.

Niger Delta states

The security situation in the Niger Delta region is fragile and unstable, particularly in the states of Abia, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Bayelsa, Delta and Rivers (except in Port Harcourt, where we advise against non-essential travel). Regional and ethnic conflicts between militant groups occur in the area and have led to higher incidents of violent crime and civil unrest. Armed robbery and kidnapping pose a significant threat in the Niger Delta states. Militant activity has also been directed at foreign interests. Armed groups have carried out successful attacks on oil facilities and workers, resulting in injuries and deaths.

If you choose to remain in the Niger Delta states despite this advisory, be extremely vigilant at all times

If travelling for business, ensure that meetings are held at a secure location and that your contact is known to you

Seek the advice of local authorities when planning trips and leave a detailed itinerary with family or friends

Piracy is an ongoing threat in the Niger Delta states. Pirate attacks, armed robbery against ships, ship hijackings, kidnappings and hostage takings occur in coastal waters in the Gulf of Guinea. Mariners should take appropriate precautions. If you are on land, avoid shoreline areas at all times.

Insurgents in speedboats and equipped with high-calibre weapons pose a risk.

Live piracy report – International Maritime Bureau’s Piracy Reporting Centre

Abuja, Calabar and Lagos

Exercise a high degree of caution in Abuja and in Calabar, the capital of Cross River State, where the security situation is more stable and facilities are relatively well developed compared to the rest of the country. Avoid non-essential travel to the rest of Cross River State, including the outskirts of Calabar, where seven people, mostly foreigners, were kidnapped in June 2016.

Exercise a high degree of caution in the city of Lagos, specifically within the area covering Ikeja in the north down to Lagos Island, Victoria Island and Ikoyi, and from Mile Two (west end of Lagos) to Chevron Estate on the Lekki Peninsula (east end of Lagos). Avoid non-essential travel beyond this area. The level of criminality in Lagos is high and incidents of violent crime, including assaults and armed attacks, have occurred against foreign nationals and in areas frequented by foreigners. Avoid all unnecessary travel after dark.

If you decide to travel to these cities you should stay in secure, guarded accommodations and maintain a high level of personal security awareness at all times.

Carry photocopies of your official identification at all times and safely store passports, visas and travel documents.

There is a high level of crime throughout Nigeria, including armed robbery, kidnapping for ransom, home invasions, carjacking and violent assault. Robberies and muggings conducted by large, well-armed groups, in places frequented by expatriates, are common. Some have been committed by persons posing as police or military personnel, particularly in the Niger Delta.

Criminal activity is high in urban areas, including the city of Lagos, as well as on the northern border with Niger and Chad.

There has been an increase in violent crime in the outer suburbs of Abuja and the Federal Capital territory since mid-2022.

Petty crime
Petty crime, such as pickpocketing and purse snatching, occurs, particularly in crowded places such as public markets and popular tourist sites.

Ensure that your belongings, including your passport and other travel documents, are secure at all times
Avoid walking alone and displaying any signs of affluence in public
Avoid all unnecessary travel after dark, when crime increases
Do not leave valuables or bags unattended
Use caution when travelling to and from banks
Be particularly discreet when using ATM’s, as criminals could follow you to rob you
Should you visit a beach, particularly Lekki and Bar beaches on Victoria Island do so only during daylight and in large groups
Be wary of tourist excursions. Sign up with a reputable tour company

Kidnappings of foreign and Nigerian nationals occur throughout Nigeria. They are a particular threat in North, North-East and Southern Nigeria.

Since April 2019, several kidnappings have occurred. Those crimes, often perpetrated by small groups of armed individuals, are indiscriminate. Residents and foreigners alike have been abducted and held captive, sometimes for days, until ransom was paid. Deaths have also been reported.

Throughout the Niger Delta states, numerous Westerners, mainly oil and gas facility workers, have been abducted, and, in some cases, killed. Remain especially vigilant in:

Warri, Delta state
in Port Harcourt, Rivers state
the states of Abia, Anambra and Imo
Kidnappings for ransom targeting Westerners have increased in the affluent areas of Lagos and the surrounding states of Ogun, Osun and Ondo.

There is a threat of terrorism, particularly in the northern and northeastern area of the country; however, attacks have been conducted elsewhere, including in Abuja. Numerous attacks on individuals, groups and security forces, occurred since 2018. Further attacks are likely.

Targets could include:

government buildings, including schools
places of worship
airports and other transportation hubs and networks
public areas such as tourist attractions, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, shopping centres, markets, hotels and other sites frequented by foreigners
Always be aware of your surroundings when in public places.

Be particularly vigilant if attending sporting events and during religious holidays and other public celebrations, as terrorists have used such occasions to mount attacks.

Police checkpoints are very frequent on roads throughout the country. Law- enforcement officers and gangs often use aggressive methods to extort bribes. This is a recurring security problem, especially along Nigeria’s borders. If you need assistance, you may contact the High Commission of Canada in Abuja or the Deputy High Commission in Lagos.

Nigerian authorities impose curfews as a means to restoring order after violence erupts in volatile areas. Curfews are currently in effect for parts of Maiduguri, Adamawa State, Borno State and Yobe State. Curfews and restrictions on the movement of vehicles, can be imposed, amended and lifted at short notice throughout Nigeria.

Demonstrations occur frequently especially in central Abuja and in other major cities. Even peaceful demonstrations can turn violent at any time. They can also lead to disruptions to traffic and public transportation.

Avoid areas where demonstrations and large gatherings are taking place
Follow the instructions of local authorities
Monitor local media for information on ongoing demonstrations
More about mass gatherings (large-scale events)

Road safety
Road conditions and road safety are poor throughout the country. Drivers often drive at excessive speeds, and accidents are common. Visibility is poor due to lack of adequate lighting.

Rental cars are available in Nigeria, but you should avoid them. Major hotels and the customer service centres at the airports in Abuja, Kano and Lagos offer reliable car-hire services complete with drivers.

Be extremely cautious when travelling to and from the airport. All arrangements should be made prior to your arrival in Nigeria.

Arrange to arrive at the airport during the day and be met there by reliable contacts.
If transportation is not arranged by hosts or the hotel, hire cars and drivers from reputable security providers.
When arranging to hire a car and driver, be sure to agree on a price and all details before accepting.

Incidents of armed carjacking occur along main roads throughout the country, however they are of particular concern on:

the roads leading to international and domestic airport
on main highways between state capitals
in main cities, including Lagos and Abuja
Many strategies are used to stop cars on the road, such as nails being scattered on the road or individuals, including pregnant women, pretending to be injured.

Do not drive at night, especially outside of major cities, due to the increased likelihood of armed banditry and kidnapping. Criminals often target travellers along major transit routes such as the Abuja – Kaduna highway.

Keep windows closed and doors locked at all times.

Public transportation
You should not use public transportation due to the risk of petty theft and armed attacks.

It has occurred that thieves hide in the trunk and emerge through the back seat once the taxi is in motion and rob the passenger.

Exercise caution when using taxis
If you must use a taxi, verify that you are the only one in the vehicle
Motorbike taxis, known in Nigeria as “okadas,” are dangerous. In several cities, okada drivers and passengers are required to wear helmets
Air travel
We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.

General information about foreign domestic airlines

There have been several incidents of armed robbery at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos. Some of these cases have resulted in death.

Confirm your transportation arrangements prior to your arrival.
Be wary of criminals posing as greeters at the airport
During the dry season, the Harmattan wind leads to high amounts of sand and dust in the air. Air travel within Nigeria can sometimes be restricted due to limited visibility. Occasionally, flights must be rerouted from their original destinations.

Credit card and ATM fraud occurs. Be cautious when using debit or credit cards:

pay careful attention when your cards are being handled by others
use ATMs located in well-lit public areas or inside a bank or business
avoid using card readers with an irregular or unusual feature
cover the keypad with one hand when entering your PIN
check for any unauthorized transactions on your account statements
More about overseas fraud

Coastal waters can be dangerous. Riptides are common. Several drownings occur each year. Follow the instructions and warnings of local authorities.

General safety information

The country experiences regular fuel shortages.

To Monitor local media for indicators of the circumstances that precede fuel shortages
Ensure that you have adequate supplies on hand


There is an increased threat of a terrorist attack in Abuja. Targets could include Government buildings, shopping malls, hotels, bars, large gatherings, international organisations, transport facilities, schools, markets, places of worship and law enforcement institutions, among others.

Citizens are advised to review their personal security situation, stay alert, and avoid gatherings and all non-essential movement within the city.

All citizens present in Abuja are encouraged to register their presence with the Embassy of Ireland.

General Advice

We advise against all travel to the following areas:

Adamawa state
Bauchi state
Borno state
Federal Capital Territory (Abuja)
Gombe state
Yobe state
The coastal and river areas of the Niger Delta states (Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Cross River and Rivers states).
Kaduna state
Katsina state
Kogi state
Nasarawa state
Niger state
Zamfara state
We advise against all but essential travel to the following areas:

Abia state
Akwa Ibom state
Bayelsa state
Delta state
Kano state
Kebbi state
Kogi state
Jigawa state
Jos city, Riyom and Barkin Ladi in Plateau state
Rivers state
Sokoto state


Latest update: We now advise do not travel to Abuja due to the very high threat of terrorist attacks. If you’re in Abuja, avoid all travel, stay alert and follow local news and the advice of security authorities.

We advise:

Reconsider your need to travel to Nigeria overall due to high threats of terrorist attack and kidnapping, the volatile security situation, possible violent civil unrest and high levels of violent crime.

Higher levels apply.

Reconsider your need to travel to Nigeria overall due to high threats of terrorist attack and kidnapping, the volatile security situation, possible violent civil unrest and high levels of violent crime.

If you’re already in this location, you should consider leaving if it’s safe to do so. If you do travel, get professional security advice. Your travel insurance policy might be void. The Australian Government may not be able to help you.

Exercise a high degree of caution in Lagos

Pay close attention to your personal security and the current health situation. Monitor the media for new and existing risks.

Do not travel to:

Akawa Ibom,
Cross Rivers,
Yobe, and
Zamfara states
due to the very high threat of terrorist attack, the threat of kidnapping, robbery and armed attacks and the volatile security situation

Avoid all travel to Abuja, due to the very high threat of terrorist attacks. If you’re in Abuja, stay alert and follow local news and the advice of security authorities. There’s a high risk of terrorist attacks across Nigeria by various militant groups. Further attacks are likely. It’s also possible that attacks by these groups may occur in other urban locations like Lagos. We continue to advise you should reconsider your need to travel to Nigeria. If, despite our advice, you undertake travel within Nigeria, research routes and get professional security advice and support before departing. Australian officials always use enhanced security measures if they do travel.

Potential targets include a wide range of venues, facilities and locations. Attacks could be indiscriminate and could affect western interests as well as places visited by tourists. You should avoid places where crowds gather, including political meetings and government buildings, religious gatherings and places of worship, schools, markets, shopping malls, hotels, bars, restaurants, athletic gatherings, transport hubs (including train networks), law enforcement facilities, international organisations and camps for displaced people.

The kidnapping threat is high throughout Nigeria. There is a high incidence of crime in Nigeria, including armed robbery, assault, kidnapping, terrorism, and maritime crime and piracy. The homicide rate is very high in many parts of the country. If, despite our advice, you travel to a high-risk area, get professional security advice and support.
There’s ongoing civil unrest in Nigeria. Public demonstrations and protest activity have, sometimes, been subject to forceful suppression by security forces, including live firing. Recent civil unrest has also included communal conflict between cattle herders and villagers in rural locations of Nigeria, including the risk of violence to bystanders.

If you’re in Nigeria, avoid crowds and isolated locations. Don’t travel after dark. If you must visit a crowded place, have a clear exit plan. Arrange pick-ups and airport transfers with someone you know or by arranging a hotel car. Keep your car doors locked, windows up and valuables out of sight. Do not use ridesharing services, taxis, or public transport.
Avoid intercity transport by road and rail due to the high incidence of attacks on motorists by criminal gangs, bandits and terrorists. If undertaken, consider engaging professional security support and planning. Groups often target transport routes.

Internet romance, friendship and employment scams often start in Nigeria. If you travel to Nigeria as a scam victim, you may expose yourself to the threat of physical harm or theft. Be wary of online contact from people you don’t know. Don’t send money until you’ve checked who you’re sending it to.

There have been significant casualties and widespread damage to infrastructure caused by severe flooding. Essential services may be disrupted. Follow the advice of local authorities and check the media for updates.

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