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US ranks Botswana safe to visit

US ranks Botswana safe to visit
January 16
11:53 2018
  • Stated Department places Botswana at Level 1, up there with the best and as safe as the US despite Trump’s “shithole” reference to Africa and accusations that he fuels white supremacy in the US


The State Department of the United States of America has issued a travel advisory to Americans in which it ranks Botswana as safe as America itself even as the diplomatic fallout lingers between Gaborone and Washington over President Donald Trump’s “shithole” remarks.

Formally called the Department of State (DOS), the US State Department is the equivalent of Botswana’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

In the latest travel advisory, Botswana has scored above America’s most important NATO allies and European powers, including Britain, Italy, France and Germany.

These global hegemons have in turn received the same score as Zimbabwe, Algeria, Burkina Faso, Colombia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Ukraine and other countries blighted by tyrannical rule, big time narco-trafficking, civil wars and other forms of civil strife.

The State Department’s new travel advisory uses four levels to signify the security situation and level of safety of all nations on earth.

Botswana is categorised as a Level 1 country, which means it is as safe as America itself, while Level 2 signifies a lingering possibility of danger.

The most extreme, Level 4, indicates a severe security situation in the countries identified. Level 4 is reserved for countries such as Iran, which has a virulent state endorsed anti-American sentiment resultant from the torturous history between the two countries.

Others on the same level include war-torn states such as Yemen, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Syria, Mali, Afghanistan and the Central African Republic. Others on Level 4 are the so-called failed states such as South Sudan and Somalia. North Korea too has not escaped Level 4.

Level 3 is also indicative of countries on the precipice. Countries which have been awarded the Level 3 score include traditional American foes such as Russia, Venezuela, Cuba and Sudan. Others are Pakistan, Niger, Mauritania, Lebanon, Chad and Guinea Bissau.

Meanwhile, Botswana is deemed as safe for Americans to visit as European states such as Ireland, Austria, Poland, Holland, Switzerland, Portugal, Sweden and Norway. Others are Greece, Australia and Austria.

Surprise entrants on Level 1 include Angola and Burma where a pogrom against the Rohingya Muslim people was in full swing as late as 2017.

African countries that have also scored Level 1 include Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Lesotho, Liberia, Rwanda and Zambia, among others.

Meanwhile, Africa’s continental powers such as Nigeria, South Africa and Kenya have not fared well. South Africa and Kenya are on Level 2 while Nigeria is on Level 3.

On Botswana, the US State Department advises Americans to just “exercise normal precautions” while it warns of Afghanistan: “Do not travel to Afghanistan due to crime, terrorism, civil unrest, and armed conflict.”

The DOS further states:  “Travel to all areas of Afghanistan is unsafe because of high levels of kidnappings, hostage taking, suicide bombings, widespread military combat operations, landmines, terrorist and insurgent attacks, including attacks using vehicle-borne or other improvised explosive devices (IEDs).”

On South Africa, ranked Level 2, the DOS advises “Americans to exercise increased caution due to crime”.

Furthermore, it advises Americans: “Violent crime, such as armed robbery, rape, carjacking, mugging, and ‘smash-and-grab’ attacks on vehicles, is common” (in South Africa).

It also advises Americans who come to South Africa to avoid visiting informal settlement areas, not to display cash or valuables as well as to drive with doors locked and windows closed.

On Britain, the DOS advises Americans to exercise increased caution due to terrorism. It advises that “terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in the United Kingdom”.

The DOS further advises Americans to be aware of their surroundings when travelling to British tourist locations and crowded public venues and to monitor local media for breaking events.



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