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Reviewed: 06 September 2010, 16:30 NZDT
Still current at: 20 June 2013
There is extreme risk to your security in Niger outside the capital Niamey due to the threat of kidnapping, the activities of armed rebel groups and the unpredictable security situation. We advise against all travel in Niger outside Niamey.
There is high risk to your security in Niamey due to the unpredictable security and political situation. We advise against all tourist and other non-essential travel to Niamey.
The political and security situation in Niger remains volatile following a military coup on 18 February 2010.
There is an ongoing high threat of kidnapping against foreigners in Niger, particularly outside Niamey. There have been incidents of foreigners being kidnapped from their vehicles. On 22 April 2010, a French national was kidnapped near Arlit in north western Niger. On 14 November 2009, heavily armed individuals attempted to kidnap employees of the US Embassy in Tahoua. On 22 January 2009, a group of foreign tourists were kidnapped on the Mali-Niger border, and a British national who was part of the group was later executed.
New Zealanders who decide to travel outside Niamey against our advice should ensure they put in place appropriate personal security protection measures. We recommend monitoring media reports and local information sources closely for security updates and remaining vigilant at all times. If you do choose to travel outside Niamey, we strongly recommend travelling in convoy with a local guide, and only during daylight hours. Such measures may mitigate the risks to your safety but cannot eliminate them entirely.
The level of crime is high in the capital city of Niamey, notably around the Gawaye Hotel, the National Museum, Kennedy Bridge and the Petit Marché, where muggings are prevalent, particularly after dark.
Terrorist attacks could occur at any time and may be directed at locations known to be frequented by expatriates and foreign travellers. New Zealanders are advised to be security conscious at all times, particularly in public areas. We also recommend avoiding all demonstrations, protests and rallies as they have the potential to turn violent with little warning.
New Zealanders are advised to respect religious and social traditions in Niger to avoid offending local sensitivities.
As there is no New Zealand diplomatic presence in Niger, the ability of the government to assist New Zealand citizens who get into trouble is severely limited.
New Zealanders travelling or living in Niger should have comprehensive medical and travel insurance policies in place that include provision for medical evacuation by air.
New Zealanders travelling or living in Niger are strongly encouraged to register their details with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.