Australians travellers warned about violent protests in United States

Peter Terlato 23 September 2016

police riots america

Visitors advised to avoid demonstrations and comply with curfews.

A state of emergency has been declared in Charlotte, North Carolina in the southeastern United States after protests with police turned violent, resulting in looting and rioting.

Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) has issued advice to Aussie travellers visiting or planning to visit the region via its Smartraveller website.

The government says travellers should avoid locations where protests and demonstrations are taking place and observe any restrictions on movements and curfews set by local authorities.

Visitors are advised to stay vigilant and monitor the media for the latest developments. For more information on safety and security, check the Smartraveller website.

The protests began after a third black man, Keith Lamont Scott, was shot dead by police this week.

In Charlotte, one protester remains hospitalised in a critical condition after a "civilian on civilian" shooting, according to local police. Nine demonstrators have been injured thus far and police have arrested 44 individuals on charges of looting, assault and failure to disperse. Five officers required medical care.

Nine people were also arrested at a Black Lives Matter protest in New York City earlier this week.

While not new advice, Smartraveller also assess there is currently a heightened threat of terrorist attacks across the United States, motivated by the rhetoric of extremists involved in the conflict in Syria and Iraq.

The overall level of advice for travel to the United States has not changed and Australians should exercise normal safety precautions when visiting other areas of the country.

DFAT has also recently issued warnings for Aussies travelling to Thailand and the Philippines following terror attacks and bomb explosions.

Visitors to Singapore have also been cautioned about potential health risks associated with the ongoing transmission of the mosquito-borne Zika virus.

If you're considering visiting a country against official government advice, find out whether or not your travel insurance covers the destination and compare the best cover options before booking your trip.

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Picture: JPL Designs / Shutterstock.com

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