Global Risk and Safety Updates

Global Risk & Safety will send a message to the IOC mailing list any time a Safety Update is posted, as well as when there are updates to the Restricted Regions list. This mailing list is a resource for university travelers and travel planners for faculty, staff, and students.

We welcome you to sign up for our listserv (search for "IOC" and subscribe to or contact us at


May 11


On May 14, 2018, the U.S. Embassy will open in Jerusalem following the December 2017 announcement by U.S. President Donald Trump, recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Many countries are preparing for protests related to the embassy opening. Related protests were held across Europe in December after the decision to move the embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem was announced. Patterns indicate that likely areas for unrest include U.S. and Israeli diplomatic missions and main squares. 

May 8

The Muslim holy month of Ramadan begins on Tuesday, May 15 and will end on Thursday, June 14 (these dates can vary slightly between countries and branches of Islam). During this time, more than 1.5 billion Muslims around the world will mark the month, during which believers abstain from eating, drinking, smoking and having marital relations from dawn until sunset.

April 23


Over the past weekend, protests against the changes to social security contributions and pension plans resulted in clashes between activists, as well as between police and protesters. The worst violence was reported in Managua, where police and military personnel were deployed to several locations, including the National University of Engineering, Metropolitan Cathedral and Polytechnic University of Nicaragua.

April 20

Measles is an ongoing health issue in Europe, and this year's disease activity reflects a continuation of outbreaks that began in 2017 (or earlier). “Measles starts with fever, runny nose, cough, red eyes, and sore throat. It’s followed by a rash that spreads over the body. Measles virus is highly contagious virus and spreads through the air through coughing and sneezing.” (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

March 14

The spring is known for bright colors and wonderful holidays that are filled with cultural and religious traditions, including Nowruz, Holy Week, Passover, and Easter. These are widely celebrated by millions of people all over the world. 

Nowruz (Nevruz) is a festival commonly recognized as the Kurdish and Persian New Year and a celebration marking the beginning of spring on March 21. Over 75 million people in multiple countries, including Iran, Afghanistan, Russia, and Turkey, will be enjoying the festivities and celebrating the New Year.

March 9

It’s the time of year when millions of college-age students flock to the beaches of the U.S., while others may plan an international adventure. Everyone plans for a great vacation without thinking of the potential safety and security issues that can arise. 

It is important, no matter where this Spring Break takes you, to remain safe and have the knowledge of what to avoid, how to avoid it, and what to do in an emergency situation. 

Standard Travel Advice

February 20

As mentioned in the Safety Update published on January 9, 2018, the U.S. State Department has replaced Travel Warnings and Alerts with a color-coded, numerical rating system of Travel Advisories for every country. All countries have a U.S. State Department Travel Advisory with an overall rating between 1-4.