U.S. State Department urges travellers to ‘reconsider’ visiting Jamaica, Colombia


(USA TODAY) — The State Department is urging Americans to “reconsider travel” to Jamaica and Colombia due to crime and, in Colombia’s case, terrorism.

The department regularly assesses risks for Americans abroad and had previously issued travel advisories for both Colombia and Jamaica but reissued them with fresh updates.

“Violent crimes, such as home invasions, armed robberies, sexual assaults, and homicides, are common. Sexual assaults occur frequently, including at all-inclusive resorts,” the State Department says in its level 3 travel advisory for Jamaica.

The State Department similarly warns of “widespread” violent crimes in Colombia, including homicide, assault and armed robbery and in some places, kidnapping and extortion. Additionally, terrorist and criminal organizations may attack public areas like airports, hotels and restaurants without warning, and due to civil unrest, “demonstrations occur regularly throughout the country” and “protests can become violent and can result in fatalities and injuries.”

“The U.S. Department of State has no higher priority than the safety and security of U.S. citizens overseas,” a State Department spokesperson said. “We take seriously our commitment to provide U.S. citizens with clear, timely, and reliable information about every country in the world so they can make informed travel decisions.”

“Local police do not respond effectively to serious criminal incidents,” according to the State Department. “When arrests are made, cases are infrequently prosecuted to a conclusive sentence. Families of U.S. citizens killed in accidents or homicides frequently wait a year or more for final death certificates to be issued by Jamaican authorities.”

The State Department adds that emergency services and hospital care vary widely across Jamaica and U.S. government personnel are not allowed to travel to many areas due to increased risk, meaning travelers have limited resources if something goes awry.

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  1. But wait according to tenman and the yardies, Jamaica is crime free? One cretin actually said Jamaica didn’t have rapes! Antigua for Antiguans!…

  2. This gives validity to that letter from ‘Born Antiguan’ with regards to increased crime in Antigua in correlation to increase in Jamaicans in Antigua. Even the rest of the world see it. It is an embarrassment to be put on such a “Do not visit” list. We will hear of xenophobia, but truth is truth and statistics don’t lie.

  3. Well said @Just Me. There was a big uproar when the article was posted about Jamaicans with @tenman and others condemning it. This indeed warrants another look. There is a startling similarity here no doubt about it.
    Lester Bird masterminded by Ron Saunders opened sesame to all and sundry, never checking the quality of the people coming here. Now, we reap what we sew. ALP continues to dupe these people because they can hold our passports, but at heart, they are not Antiguans.
    Our culture is gone, we have other dialects dominating our live performances of plays, our schools are overpopulated and our communities are gone forever. The socio-economic conditions of our once peaceful nation is a thing of the past. It is sad what we have become. Sad.
    My hear is saddened for the country of my birth.
    “Dear Antigua, my heart is torn
    For I have become a stranger in the land where I was born.”

  4. If this crime wave continues, Antigua could be placed on the “reconsider list”. Tourism is the backbone of our economy. Pray this never happens as Antigua will suffer and suffer very badly. Police needs to work harder to arrest the criminals.

    • Exactly. We can’t compare Antigua to USA. America’s economy isn’t based solely on tourism. Antigua’s is! And since we don’t export anything or manufacture anything for export, We will suffer. America won’t.

  5. America needs to place themselves on this list. They too have a high crime rate and they stand on their soap boxes and throw shade on everybody else to make them look good. I’m sooooo tired of the way we look at our country. Things are not what we want them to be, but we are not worst than anybody else. A lot of times criminals are not caught as we hide for each other, then we say police don’t do their jobs. One hand can NEVER clap. Let’s do this together. It can’t be all negative in my blessed country. Tired much of it. ANTIGUA IS MY HOME. #BLESSEDANTIGUA

  6. Antigua is reaping what Gaston Browne has sown before the General Election.

    His GERRYMANDERING has allowed an influx of voting non-nationals to flood into the country without the proper checks or investigations to find out if any of them had a criminal or violent background.

    Sadly, it’s no coincidence that this “questionable” VOTE-RIGGING has seen an increase in crimes and misdemeanours.

    Many autochthonous Antiguans shouted from the rooftops before the election that this would cause us long term problems – and thus, it has turned out to be!

    It seems like the (criminal) chickens have come home to Antigua to roost …


  8. It’s hilarious. While we’re measuring violence by the number of murders, the US has to measure it by counting mass shootings. They should be issuing travel advisories against going outside their own homes.

    I just read this bit of news – At least seven nations have issued advisories to their citizens who intend on traveling to the U.S., citing serious safety concerns in recent years. New Zealand, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, France, Venezuela and Uruguay have each urged precaution for travelers when visiting the U.S., due in large part to gun violence.

    Pot just met the kettle….

  9. Tourism is our livelihood and we cannot afford anything to threaten that. We need to do something about the high crime rate in Antigua before it get to Jamaica’s level.

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