Security Alert: U.S. Embassy Harare, Zimbabwe

Security Alert: Continued street blockades and military checkpoints, government disruption of internet, reports of abuse and violence across Zimbabwe by security agents and political party supporters.

Location: Across Zimbabwe

Event:  In response to protests over fuel shortages and price hikes, police dispersed tear gas against protesters in Bulawayo, Harare, and Mutare on January 14.   On January 15 and January 16, the Embassy received reports of clashes between security forces and residents in satellite neighborhoods in Harare, Bulawayo, Kadoma, Kariba, and Mutare.  The Embassy cannot confirm the number of people injured or killed since security forces responded, but  Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum reports that 52 people sustained gunshot wounds since the protests started on January 14.

The Embassy is operating with limited staffing for emergency services only.  Grocery stores, schools, fuel stations, and local businesses remain closed on January 16. Hospitals are open with limited staffing due to employees being affected by fuel shortages and disruption of public transportation.  Internet service continues to be disrupted by the Government of Zimbabwe so communication is limited to radio, text messaging, and phone calls.

The Embassy recommends that American citizens restrict movement to daylight hours and only on unimpeded routes in your vicinity, monitor local media for updates, including Voice of America on Channel 909 AM in Harare and on short-wave 4930, 7210 and 12120 kilohertz frequencies.  The Harare International Airport and Victoria Falls Airport remain open for business. Fast Jet and Air Zimbabwe, two of the main airline operators in Victoria Falls, announced they had cancelled all of their flights until further notice.

Actions to Take:

  • In Harare: avoid the Harare Commercial Business District, Chitungwiza, Damafalls, Dzivarasekwa, Epworth, Hatcliffe, and Mabvuku.   Outside Harare we recommend that Americans avoid satellite neighborhoods in Kadoma, Kariba and downtown Bulawayo and its western suburbs.
  • Avoid demonstrations and all public gatherings
  • Exercise increased caution
  • Monitor local news stations for updates
  • Be vigilant and take steps to enhance your personal security; and
  • Remain alert for potentially dangerous situations.

Assistance:

  • United States Embassy Harare, Zimbabwe
    2 Lorraine Drive
    Harare, Zimbabwe
    Tel: +263-867-701-1000
    Emergency +263 -772 559-727
    https://zw.usembassy.gov/
  • State Department – Consular Affairs
    1-888-407-4747 or 1-202-501-4444
  • Zimbabwe Country Information
  • Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates
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