As a new year of travel planning begins, the U.S. State Department has cautioned people not to travel to 10 countries around the world.
The countries – which include conflict zones such as Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria – have No. 4-level travel advisories.
Last year, the State Department simplified its travel warnings and alerts.
Under the new system, introduced in January 2018, every country in the world is now ranked 1 to 4.
No. 1 advises travelers to take normal precautions. No. 2 encourages increased caution. No. 3 urges travelers to reconsider a trip. And No. 4 recommends against travel.
Specific threats are now labeled by letter. C is for crime, T for terrorism, U for civil unrest, H for health risks, N for natural disasters, E for time-limited events such as elections or sporting events, and O for other.
Ten countries – including Turkey and Venezuela – have No. 3 travel advisory levels.
Mexico, overall, has a No. 2 travel advisory level due to crime. But the State Department also has alerts for each state. The department advises that U.S. citizens not travel to the following states due to crime: Colima, Guerrero, Michoacan, Sinaloa and Tamaulipas.
Reviews for countries ranked 1 or 2 will happen once a year. Those with 3 or 4 levels will be reassessed every six months. But the labels may change at other times depending on events.
The State Department cannot forbid U.S. travelers from visiting any of these countries, except for North Korea.
To see pictures of the riskiest countries in the world, take a look at the photo gallery above.
The countries with the No. 4 warning and the codes of their specific threats are:
- Afghanistan, C, T, U, O
- Central African Republic, C, U
- Iraq, T, O
- Libya, C, T, U, O
- Mali, C, T
- North Korea, O
- Somalia, C, T, O
- South Sudan, C, O
- Syria, T, U, O
- Yemen, T, U, H, O
Those with No. 3 travel warnings are:
- Chad, C, T, O
- Congo DRC, C, U, O
- Mauritania, C, T
- Nicaragua, C, U, H, O
- Niger, C, T
- Nigeria, C, T, U, O
- Pakistan, T, O
- Sudan, C, T, U, O
- Turkey, T, O
- Venezuela, C, U, H, O