U.S. issues new travel restrictions in response to possible Iranian attack


Several countries, including the United States, have issued new travel guidance for Israel and the surrounding region, and Israel’s military said its forces were “on high alert” for possible attacks by Iran in retaliation for the killing of several commanders.

Iran has repeatedly vowed to strike back against Israel after a bombing this month killed three generals and four other military officers at the Iranian embassy building in Damascus, Syria. Washington expects an Iranian attack on Israel to be larger than the latest in the long shadow war between the two countries, but not so big as to draw the United States into the war, a U.S. official said on Friday. The official spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the matter.

The U.S. State Department on Thursday barred its employees from traveling to much of Israel, the first time the U.S. government has restricted the movement of its employees in this way since the Gaza war began more than six months ago.

Britain told its citizens on Thursday that they “should consider leaving” Israel and the Palestinian territories “if it is safe to do so”. On Friday, India told its citizens “not to travel to Iran or Israel until further notice.” France advises people Not traveling to Israel, Iran or Lebanon and evacuating the families of French diplomats from Iran.

Asked about the U.S. travel warning, U.S. State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said at a news conference on Thursday: “We have seen Iran make overt threats against Israel over the past few days.” He declined to provide the details that prompted the warning. Details of any specific information.

The new guidance prohibits U.S. government employees and their families from traveling outside the Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Beersheba metropolitan areas until further notice “out of an abundance of caution.” The State Department said personal travel by U.S. personnel between these regions is allowed.

U.S. officials said the top U.S. military commander in the Middle East, General Michael E. Kurila, traveled to Israel to coordinate responses to possible Iranian retaliation.

“Our enemies believe they will divide Israel and the United States,” Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Galant said in a statement after meeting with Gen. Kurila on Friday. “They are reaching out to us and strengthening our relationships.”

He added that if Iran launched an attack, “we would know how to respond.”

On Thursday, Israel’s chief military spokesman, Maj. Gen. Daniel Hagari, said the armed forces were “highly alert and prepared” for any possible actions by Iran, although the timing and scale of any response remained unclear. Analysts say Tehran has long used a network of proxies to project power in the Middle East, hoping to avoid triggering an all-out war that could drag down the United States and threaten the Iranian regime’s survival.

“For years, and especially during the war, Iran has been funding, directing and arming its proxies in Lebanon, Gaza, Syria, Iraq and Yemen to attack the state of Israel,” he said. “An attack from Iranian soil would be clear “It clearly demonstrates Iran’s intent to escalate tensions in the Middle East and stop hiding behind proxies.”


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