Emergency and Security Information
Emergency Message: Massoud Circle Ceremony
September 8, 2011
According to local media reports, on the morning of September 9, 2011, Afghan government officials, including either President Karzai or one of the Vice Presidents are holding a ceremony at Massoud Circle. During this ceremony Massoud Circle will be closed to all vehicle traffic, as a large number of Massoud supporters are expected. It is also possible that the portion of the Airport Road from Massoud Circle to the cut-off with Route Kara will be closed to vehicle traffic. The Embassy anticipates that street closures will begin around 6:00am local time and possibly extend to 9:00am. Following the ceremony, significant traffic delays are anticipated in the vicinity of Massoud Circle as supporters will be visiting the location throughout the day.
In addition to the ceremony at Massoud Circle, it is possible that crowds of Massoud supporters will gather in other areas of Kabul city. Other groups of supporters, several of whom are from outside of Kabul, are also expected to travel throughout Kabul in a vehicle convoy displaying black flags. In previous years, those traveling in the vehicle convoy have driven erratically and aggressively. If stopped or interfered with, they may act aggressively. These activities, in addition to spontaneous public gatherings, are possible throughout the day.
We wish to remind U.S. citizens that even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and possibly escalate into violence. U.S. citizens are therefore urged to avoid the areas of demonstrations if possible, and to exercise caution if within the vicinity of any demonstrations. The Embassy also urges U.S. citizens to remain vigilant and avoid areas where westerners congregate. Do not discuss travel plans or other personal matters with strangers, or in public. Be alert and aware of your surroundings, and always travel with mobile phones or appropriate communication equipment.
U.S. citizens in Afghanistan should regularly monitor the Embassy's Security Announcements Internet web page, as well as the Department of State's Bureau of Consular Affairs website, where the Worldwide Caution, Country
Specific Information and the Travel Warning for Afghanistan are found. In addition, the Embassy encourages U.S. citizens to review "A Safe Trip Abroad," which
includes valuable security information for those traveling or living in
foreign countries. You can also follow the Bureau of Consular Affairs
on Twitter and on Facebook or download our free Smart Traveler App for
travel information at your fingertips. Up-to-date information on security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada, or, for callers outside of the United States and Canada, on a regular toll-line at 1-202-501-444. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
U.S. citizens living or traveling abroad are also encouraged to maintain
valid travel documents and to enroll in the Department of State's Smart
Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP), to receive the latest travel updates and information and to obtain updated information on travel and security issues.
The U.S. Embassy is located at Great Masood Road between Radio Afghanistan and the Ministry of Public Health in Kabul. To reach the American Citizens Services unit during business hours, please call 0700-108-499 or send us an e-mail (USConsulKabul@state.gov). You can also reach us through the Embassy's switchboard by calling 0700-108-001/002. For after-hours life-or-limb emergencies involving U.S. citizens, please call the Consular Duty Officer at 0700-201-908.