UNCLAS AMMAN 001165
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OREP AMGT OTRA ASEC AFIN JO
SUBJECT: COUNTRY CLEARANCE APPROVAL- PRINS+7
REF: FM COMSOCCENT INTEL MACDILL AFB//J2-X// 271706Z MAR 08
Â¶1. (SBU) Embassy Amman warmly welcomes the visit of MAJ FREDERICK
PRINS +7 TO AMMAN, DURING THE PERIOD OF 26 APR 08 - 1 MAY 08, as
requested in reftel. The travelers should carefully review this
message, especially the threat assessment at paragraph 9.
Â¶2. On October 1, 2007, the Department of State electronic country
clearance (eCC) application was deployed for all U.S. Government
travelers. eCC is the official channel to request country clearance.
All agencies and visitors are requested to use eCC to request
country clearance in the future.
Â¶3. (SBU) Control officer for this visit is BRADY, SHANNON, SFC, USA,
OPSNCO, USDAO AMMAN. OFFICE TELE: 011-962-6-590-6528; MOBILE TELE:
011-962-79-666-7672. E-MAIL ADDRESS: BRADYSM@STATE.GOV. The
Embassy's after-hours telephone number is +962-6-590-6500.
Â¶4. (SBU) HOTRES and Airport Expeditor/Transportation Support: All
lodging, expeditor and transportation support requirements for the
duration of the TDY period have been arranged via control officer.
Due to security concerns in Jordan (paragraph 8), TDY personnel are
assigned hotels on a rotational basis. Therefore, Embassy Amman will
make the final decision on hotel accommodations for all visitors.
Â¶5. (U) Valid visas are required for entry into Jordan. Visas may be
obtained at Queen Alia airport though not at all land border
crossings; however, Embassy Amman suggests visitors obtain their
visas prior to arrival, as there can be long queues for visa issuance
at the airport. Money can be exchanged at Queen Alia airport or in
the delegation's control room.
Â¶6. (U) Action request: Each visitor, regardless of length of stay,
must bring/forward fiscal data to pay for direct costs of the visit.
Each agency, organization or visiting delegation will be charged for
the actual costs attributed to its visit. Direct charge costs
include, but are not limited to: American and LES overtime (for such
services as airport expediting, cashier accommodation exchange,
control room staffing, representational event support), travel and
per diem costs incurred by post personnel in support of visitor's
field travel, rental of vehicles and other equipment, long distance
telephone calls, office supplies, gasoline and other vehicle
maintenance costs, departure tax and other airport fees. Post will
not provide service if fiscal data is not provided for the direct
charges. For TDYers remaining at post over 30 days, there is a
charge for ICASS support services. This charge is for the following
ICASS services: Basic Package, CLO and Health Services. Agencies
will not be billed until the accumulated invoice cost for TDY support
exceeds $2,500 for the fiscal year. If your sponsoring agency is not
signed up for ICASS services at post, please be prepared to sign a
Memorandum of Understanding for ICASS support services upon arrival.
The agency should provide post with a written communication,
generated by the traveler's headquarters, that confirms the agency
will pay ICASS charges for the TDYer, provides the agency ICASS
billing code the TDY support charges should be applied to, and
authorizes the traveler to sign the ICASS invoice generated by the
TDY module. Where travel is urgent, the TDYer should bring this
documentation with him/her to ensure there are no interruptions in
the provision of service. Post will not provide any service to a
TDYer staying in excess of thirty days without provision of this
documentation before day 31 of the TDY.
Â¶7. (U) HEALTH: H5N1 avian flu was confirmed in poultry in Jordan in
March 2006, and in the same month, the Government of Jordan confirmed
a human case of H5N1 avian flu in a person who was infected in Egypt
and traveled to Jordan while sick. The World Health Organization
declared Jordan to be free of avian flu in May 2006. There have been
no confirmed cases of avian flu in people or birds in Jordan since
the summer of 2006. Further cases of avian flu in both people and
birds in Jordan remain possible. For this reason and for normal
health precautions, visitors are encouraged to avoid live poultry,
poultry farms, and any dead birds. Visitors should use hand
sanitizer and wash hands frequently. Travelers should also patronize
restaurants having high standards for food safety and hygiene, and
ask that poultry and egg products be cooked thoroughly.
Although Jordan does not pose any unusual health hazards for
visitors, the quality of health care facilities is not up to the U.S.
or European standards, particularly outside of Amman. As medications
on the local economy are often in short supply, visitors should bring
sufficient medications to post for their chronic medical problems.
Immunizations should be current for Tetanus and Diphtheria, Hepatitis
A and B. Visitors should drink bottled water rather than tap water.
Food in the hotels and most restaurants is safe to eat, but some of
the smaller local restaurants do not always observe proper food
Only those personnel covered under the State Department's medical
program and who have a valid medical clearance for Jordan are
eligible for a medical evacuation at USG cost. All other visitors
are advised to have their own medical evacuation insurance to cover
evacuation by air ambulance. Otherwise it will be necessary to
ensure that the respective agency will cover any costs related to a
medical evacuation. All local hospitals take major credit cards.
Â¶8. (U) SECURITY CLEARANCE AND BUILDING ACCESS: In compliance with
State Department regulations and Embassy policies, visitors
requesting unescorted access to the Embassy compound should inform
RSO Amman of their security clearance level (if any) and should name
the agency that granted that clearance. Telegrams containing this
information should include the "ASEC" tag to ensure distribution to
Electronic devices: RSO approval must be obtained before any
electronic device is brought into the Embassy. Privately owned
laptops and personal computers, peripherals, diskettes, and tapes are
prohibited in all mission facilities. Cellular/mobile phones and
palm pilots are prohibited in controlled access areas.
Travelers with USG-owned unclassified laptops or notebook computers,
peripherals, diskettes, and tapes must receive RSO/IMO authorization
before being granted access to U.S. Mission buildings. USG-owned
classified computers must be sent to post via classified diplomatic
pouch. Classified equipment must bear external USG bar-code
inventory numbers and classification markings commensurate with the
highest level of information processed on the system. Questions
concerning other types of electronic devices and magnetic media may
be directed to the RSO and IMO.
Mandatory personal security training: Per 04 STATE 66580, all
employees traveling to post for 30 days or more (whether PCS or TDY)
must have completed the mandatory personal security training (State
Department Security Overseas Seminar or equivalent) before arriving
at post. Agencies must provide the Chief of Mission with
certification that this training will be completed prior to the
employee's travel. Failure to do so will result in denial of country
Â¶9. (U) THREAT ASSESSMENT: The threat of terrorism remains high in
Jordan. Transnational terrorist groups, as well as less
sophisticated local elements, have demonstrated the capability to
pose threats in Jordan. The Al-Qaida in Iraq network is of
particular concern for terrorist activities against U.S. and
Government of Jordan (GOJ) targets in Jordan. The Al-Qaida in Iraq
network claimed responsibility for the November 9, 2005 bombings of
three international hotels in Amman, which killed 60 people and
injured over 100. Pedestrian suicide bombers wearing explosive vests
carried the bombs into the hotels. Al-Qaida in Iraq also claimed
responsibility for the Aqaba rocket attacks on August 19, 2005
targeting a U.S. naval ship, which killed one Jordanian soldier and
wounded another. The assassination of American diplomat Larry Foley
outside his west Amman residence on October 28, 2002 was also
attributed to Al-Qaida in Iraq leader Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi, who was
killed in Iraq in June 2006.
In addition, there has been a series of confirmed terrorist threats
and disrupted terrorist plots targeting U.S. or Jordanian interests
in Jordan. In November 2006, the GOJ arrested four men who were
planning to use a taxi cab to identify and assassinate an American.
In the same month, the GOJ arrested three men who were reportedly
plotting to attack the U.S. Embassy and assassinate President Bush
during his visit to Jordan. In February 2006, the GOJ disrupted a
terrorist cell plotting to attack Queen Alia International Airport.
In November 2005, the GOJ indicted six men for planning to carry out
attacks against Americans at hotels and bars in Amman and Aqaba. In
August-September 2005, four militants were arrested for plotting
assassinations of Americans in Jordan. In July 2005, GOJ authorities
arrested 17 men who had planned to assassinate GOJ officials and
Americans in Jordan; the group was reportedly linked to Al-Qaida in
Iraq. In February 2005, four men were arrested for plotting attacks
against GOJ officials, tourists and five-star hotels. In the same
month, another group was disrupted while plotting to attack liquor
stores in Amman and foreign tourists in Aqaba.
Terrorists often do not distinguish between U.S. government personnel
and private citizens. Terrorists may target areas frequented by
Westerners, such as tourist sites, hotels, restaurants, bars,
nightclubs, liquor stores, shopping malls, transportation hubs,
places of worship, expatriate residential areas, and schools. In
light of these security concerns, U.S. citizens are urged to maintain
a high level of vigilance, to be aware of their surroundings, and to
take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness. It is
especially important for travelers to be unpredictable by varying
their times and routes and to maintain a low profile. Moreover, U.S.
citizens are urged to avoid contact with any suspicious or unfamiliar
objects and to immediately report the presence of such objects to the
authorities. U.S. Government personnel overseas have been advised to
take the same precautions.
Anti-American and anti-Western sentiment exists in Jordan and has
been sparked on occasion by incidents in the region, particularly
those related to Israeli/Palestinian issues and, to a lesser extent,
Iraq. This may lead to random acts of violence against Westerners.
On September 4, 2006, a gunman fired on foreigners at a popular
tourist site in central Amman, killing one and injuring six.
Travelers are advised to avoid any demonstrations or large gatherings
of people. Many demonstrations occur near mosques after Friday
prayers. Consequently, special sensitivity and caution should be
exercised at or near mosques and religious sites during holy days and
the Friday Muslim Sabbath. Demonstrations also often take place at
universities and refugee camps.
Crime is generally not a serious problem for travelers in Jordan, but
petty crime is prevalent in the downtown Amman Hashimiyah Square area
and near the Roman Amphitheater. In the narrow streets of the older
parts of the city center, crowded conditions invite pickpockets and
other petty criminals. Travelers are urged to be more guarded in
these areas so that they do not present easy opportunities for
In central and west Amman, there have been reports of thieves
snatching pedestrians' purses from moving vehicles and then driving
off. In some instances, victims were injured when they were unable
to free themselves from their purses. When carrying a purse, it
would be wise to conceal it if possible, to avoid walking near the
road within reach of passing vehicles, and to walk against the flow
Jordanian police have warned the public to exercise vigilance when
leaving banks or ATM machines, as thieves have reportedly preyed upon
persons soon after using these services.
Western women both visiting and residing in Jordan report sexual
harassment, stalking, and unwelcome advances of a sexual nature;
there have been isolated reports of assault. Women are advised to
take reasonable precautions including dressing conservatively and not
traveling alone. Modest attire should be worn in deference to local
Â¶10. (U) TRAVEL GUIDELINES: American citizens and official visitors
traveling in Jordan should exercise caution, be alert, and stay
informed of regional and local events that could quickly impact the
security environment in the country. It is also recommended to
maintain a low profile and not establish predictable patterns of
movement, even if only visiting for a short period. Yellow taxis are
widely used throughout the country and for the most part without
adverse incidents occurring. Still, there have been confirmed
reports of single females being assaulted or verbally harassed by
taxi drivers. The Embassy Internet website has a list of radio
controlled taxi companies that the Government of Jordan has advised
us vet their drivers at
For further information, see the State Department's Consular
Information Sheet for Jordan at http://www.travel.state.gov, click
the "Travel Information by Country" hyperlink to get the most recent
Public Announcements on Travel in the Middle East and South Asia and
the most recent Worldwide Caution.
Visit Amman's Classified Web Site at