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Reviewed: 28 July 2010, 16:35 NZDT
Still current at: 20 June 2013
There is extreme risk to your security in north-western Uganda (Nebbi, Arua, Yumbe, Moyo, Adjumani, Gulu, Apac, Lira, Kitgum and Pader districts) and areas bordering Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), including Lake Albert and Murchison Falls National Park, and we advise against all travel to these areas. Banditry and attacks and abductions by rebel groups, including the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), pose a significant risk to your safety in these areas.
There is extreme risk to your security in north-eastern Uganda (Kaabong, Kotido, Moroto, Katakwi, Nakapiripirit, Abim, Kapchorwa and Bukwa districts), due to banditry and inter-tribal clashes and we advise against all travel to these areas.
There is extreme risk to your security in the south-western border area shared with the Democratic Republic of the Congo (including the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga Gorilla Park), due to banditry and cross-border attacks by rebel groups and we advise against all travel to this area. We expressly advise New Zealanders against taking gorilla trekking tours in this area that cross into the DRC.
Elsewhere in Uganda there is some risk to your security due to the threat from terrorism, civil unrest and criminal activity and we advise caution.
There is a threat from terrorism in Uganda. Somali insurgents have threatened to carry out attacks in Uganda in response to the deployment of Ugandan military forces to Somalia as part of an African Union peacekeeping force. On 11 July 2010, bomb attacks occurred in two locations in Kampala. The attacks took place at a restaurant in Kabalagala and a rugby club in Lugogo, killing over 70 people and injuring many others. Another bomb located in the Makindye area failed to detonate. Further attacks cannot be ruled out, particularly in crowded and public areas. Possible targets may include hotels, restaurants, bars, clubs, markets, shopping areas, tourist sites, embassies, places of worship, schools, Ugandan government buildings, bus terminals, airports and civil aviation. New Zealanders in Uganda are advised to be security conscious at all times and follow any instructions and restrictions issued by the local authorities.
Armed robberies and car-jackings occur throughout the country. Walking alone or travelling after dark is not recommended and no resistance should be given if you are the victim of an armed robbery or carjacking as this could lead to an escalation in violence. We also recommend avoiding any demonstrations, protests and political rallies as they have the potential to turn violent. In September 2009, three days of violent demonstrations in Kampala left 25 people dead and over 100 injured before security forces brought the situation under control using tear gas and live gun fire.
New Zealanders visiting Uganda’s national parks are advised to use reputable, registered tour operators. In February 2008, a foreign tourist was shot and killed in Mt Elgon National Park. Armed attacks and security incidents have occurred in other national parks. As the security situation in the parks can change with little warning, we recommend contacting the Ugandan Wildlife Authority (UWA) for the latest information prior to embarking on your journey.
As there is no New Zealand diplomatic presence in Uganda, the ability of the government to assist New Zealand citizens who get into trouble is severely limited.
New Zealanders travelling or living in Uganda should have comprehensive medical and travel insurance policies in place that include provision for medical evacuation by air.
New Zealanders travelling or living in Uganda are strongly encouraged to register their details with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.