MOFA urges Taiwanese in Iraq, parts of Iran to leave immediately - Focus Taiwan

MOFA urges Taiwanese in Iraq, parts of Iran to leave immediately

MOFA spokeswoman Joanne Ou (CNA file photo)
MOFA spokeswoman Joanne Ou (CNA file photo)

Taipei, Jan. 9 (CNA) Taiwan's government has advised its nationals to avoid traveling to Iraq and some parts of Iran and urged Taiwanese who are already in those areas to leave immediately, as tension between Iran and the United States escalate.

In a statement posted late Wednesday on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) Bureau of Consular Affairs, the bureau said it maintains a red travel alert, the highest level of its four-tier travel warning system, to Iraq and the Iranian provinces of Sistan and Baluchestan, Khorasan, Khuzestan and Ilam.

Although the red travel alert has been in place for some time due to terrorist activities and widespread violence, the Bureau of Consular Affairs has added the attacks between Iran and the U.S. as another reason for maintaining the travel alert level.

Tehran fired at least two waves of missiles at two Iraqi military bases hosting U.S. troops Wednesday in retaliation for a Jan. 3 U.S. drone strike in Baghdad that killed Iranian Revolutionary Guard Commander Qassim Suleimani.

Meanwhile, the Bureau of Consular Affairs put the rest of Iran on an orange travel alert, the second-highest alert in its warning system, signaling that Taiwanese nationals should avoid unnecessary travel to the country.

She said Taiwanese in Iran are currently all safe and that the Commercial Office of Taipei in Dubai, which also oversees Taiwan's affairs with Iran, is closely monitoring the situation and ready to assist its nationals if the need arises.

(By Elaine Hou and Emerson Lim)

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