Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Demonstrations (October 10, 2014)

The U.S. Embassy in Turkey informs U.S. citizens that public demonstrations are taking place throughout Turkey at varying times and with little advance notice, in response to ongoing events in the region near the border with Syria. Demonstrations and violent altercations have occurred in Istanbul, Diyarbakır, Gaziantep, Adana, Mersin, and elsewhere. Please exercise caution, practice good security measures, maintain a low profile and avoid areas of congestion, particularly including demonstrations and protests.

Istanbul continues to experience sporadic protests and demonstrations (some violent) by various political and social groups.  Due to the potential for unofficial protests and demonstrations, we recommend avoiding the following neighborhoods of Istanbul until further notice: Taksim Square, Okmeydani, Nurtepe, Dolapdere, Esenyurt, Gazi Mahallesi, Sultangazi, Bagcilar, Kucukcekmece-Kanarya, Kadikoy, Sarigazi, Sultanbey, and Kartal-Maltepe.

In Adana, demonstrations can occur at any location and time, but the U.S. Consulate in Adana recommends avoiding Kucuk Dikili (Misis), Eski Adliye, MK Pasa, Inonu Park, Daglioglu,19 Mayis, Sakirpasa, Hurriyet, Ismetpasa, Denizli, Yesileveler, Barbaros, Gulbahcesi, Guney Kusak, Cukurova Caddesi, Onur, Obalar, Besocak Meydani, Anadolu, Yesiloba and Mirzacelebi.  Additionally, there have been incidents when protestors have attempted to stop traffic on the D-400 road (Girne Bulvari/E5) and thrown rocks at passing vehicles in areas between the Asri cemetery and Seyhan river.

In Ankara, while there have been no reports of violent protests, the potential does exist for demonstrations and protests.

In the southeastern areas of the country, Turkish authorities have imposed emergency travel restrictions in various districts within Mardin and Batman provinces.

While U.S. citizens have not been the targets of recent demonstrations, even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and possibly escalate into violence. As always, be aware of your surroundings, maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance personal security.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Turkey enroll in the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate to contact you in an emergency.  If you don’t have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

Regularly monitor the State Department’s website, where you can find current Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution. Read the Country Specific Information for Turkey. For additional information, refer to the “Traveler’s Checklist” on the State Department’s website.

Contact the U.S. embassy or consulate for up-to-date information on travel restrictions.  You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays). Follow us on Twitter and Facebook to have travel information at your fingertips.

Contact information for the U.S. Embassy and Consulates in Turkey:

  • The U.S. Embassy in Ankara is located at 110 Ataturk Boulevard, tel: (90)(312) 455-5555, fax (90)(312) 468-6131.
  • The U.S. Consulate General in Istanbul is located at 2 Uçsehitler Sokagi, 34460, Istinye, Sariyer, tel: (90) (212) 335-9000, fax (90) (212) 335-9102.
  • The U.S. Consulate in Adana is located at 212 Girne Bulvari, Guzelevler Mahallesi, Yuregir, Adana, Turkey. tel: (90)(322) 346-6262, fax (90)(322) 346-7916.
  • The Consular Agency in Izmir can be reached at tel: (90) (232) 464-8755, fax (90) (232) 464-8916.