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Security Message for U.S. Citizens: Nevruz Celebrations March 18, 2016


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U.

S. Embassy Ankara informs U.

S. citizens that in light of recent events and the upcoming Nevruz holidays, citizens should be mindful of their security precautions.  Nevruz celebrations are anticipated in various locations throughout Turkey on March 17-21.  Local authorities have banned large gatherings during select dates over the Nevruz period citing security concerns.  Celebrations in Ankara, Istanbul, Izmir, and Adana are expected to take place Sunday, March 20. The celebration in Diyarbakir, traditionally the site of the largest Nevruz festivities, is currently scheduled for March 21.  The entire period is expected to see festivities that could be large and/or spontaneous.

Nevruz is a festival commonly recognized as the Kurdish and Persian New Year and a celebration marking the beginning of spring.  Public Nevruz observances typically involve roadside bonfires in addition to large celebrations. Nevruz has political as well as social connotations, and in some recent years has been a flashpoint for spontaneous demonstrations.   

Demonstrations and large events intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.  We advise U.

S. citizens to continue to avoid political gatherings, protests, and demonstrations and to exercise caution if you are in the vicinity.  Review your personal security plans, remain aware of your surroundings and local events, monitor local news stations for updates, and follow local authority instructions.

The U.

S. Embassy also reminds individuals that terrorist organizations have targeted transportation hubs, Turkish government facilities, and public spaces in the recent past. 

 

 

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