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Message Regarding the Europe Travel Alert

On November 21, 2016, the U.S. Department of State revised its Europe Travel Alert. Travel Alerts are issued when the U.S. government thinks there are “short-term events that you should know about when planning travel to a country.” Please carefully review the Travel Alert that is pasted below and follow the security precautions outlined.

We would also like to remind the MSU community that the Office of International Health and Safety (OIHS) monitors events overseas and works closely with campus and external partners - including the Risk and Security Assessment Committee (RSAC), the Office of Study Abroad (OSA), the U.S. State Department Overseas Security Advisory Council, and our evacuation and security information provider – to support healthy and safe travel.

Do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or concerns. Contact information and many other international health and safety resources may be found at

Wishing everyone safe travels and happy holidays,

The Office of International Health and Safety
Michigan State University
International Studies and Programs
427 N Shaw Lane, Room 308
Office Tel.: 1-517-884-2174 / 1-517-884-9419
MSU 24/7 International Emergency Line: +1-517-353-3784

“The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to the heightened risk of terrorist attacks throughout Europe, particularly during the holiday season. U.S. citizens should exercise caution at holiday festivals, events, and outdoor markets.  This Travel Alert expires on February 20, 2017.

Credible information indicates the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or Da'esh), al-Qa'ida, and their affiliates continue to plan terrorist attacks in Europe, with a focus on the upcoming holiday season and associated events.  U.S. citizens should also be alert to the possibility that extremist sympathizers or self-radicalized extremists may conduct attacks during this period with little or no warning. Terrorists may employ a wide variety of tactics, using both conventional and non-conventional weapons and targeting both official and private interests. 

While extremists have carried out attacks in Belgium, France, Germany, and Turkey in the past year, the Department remains concerned about the potential for attacks throughout Europe.  If you are traveling between countries in Europe, please check the website of the U.S. Embassy or consulate in your destination city for any recent security messages.

U.S. citizens should exercise vigilance when attending large holiday events, visiting tourist sites, using public transportation, and frequenting places of worship, restaurants, hotels, etc.  Be aware of immediate surroundings and avoid large crowds, when possible.  Review security information from local officials, who are responsible for the safety and security of all visitors to their host country.  U.S. citizens should:

  • Follow the instructions of local authorities.  Monitor media and local information sources and factor updated information into personal travel plans and activities.
  • Be prepared for additional security screening and unexpected disruptions.
  • Stay in touch with your family members and ensure they know how to reach you in the event of an emergency.
  • Have an emergency plan of action ready.
  • Register in our Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).

European authorities continue to conduct raids and disrupt terror plots.  We continue to work closely with our European allies on the threat from international terrorism.  Information is routinely shared between the United States and our key partners in order to disrupt terrorist plotting, identify and take action against potential operatives, and strengthen our defenses against potential threats. 

For further information: