Still current at:11 May 2018
Updated:9 May 2018
Latest update:Summary - on 12 May 2018, national elections will take place in Iraq; there will be a heightened security presence across the country over the weekend; terrorists may try to disrupt the elections by carrying out attacks; the Government of Iraq has announced the closure of all land and air borders for 24 hours from 12.01am on 12 May; if you're due to travel to or from Iraq on this date, you're advised to contact your airline or travel company for advice on alternative arrangements and amend your plans accordingly
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all travel to:
· Anbar province
· Ninewah province
· Salah-Al-Din province
· Diyala province
· Tam’mim (Kirkuk) province
· in Erbil province, south of Road 80, and within 10km of the border with Ninewah province between Road 80 and Road 2
The FCO advise against all but essential travel to the rest of Iraq, including the remainder of the Kurdistan region.
On 12 May 2018, national elections will take place in Iraq. There will be a heightened security presence across the country over the weekend. Terrorists may try to disrupt the elections by carrying out attacks. The Government of Iraq has announced the closure of all land and air borders for 24 hours from 12.01am on 12 May. If you’re due to travel to or from Iraq on this date, you’re advised to contact your airline or travel company for advice on alternative arrangements and amend your plans accordingly.
The Federal Government of Iraq announced the resumption of international flights to and from Erbil and Sulaimaniyah airports from 19 March. Travellers should check with airlines before making plans. According to Iraqi law you must have a visa before you travel, even if you’re intending to travel to the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. See Visas
The Iraqi Prime Minister announced the defeat of Daesh in Iraq on 9 December 2017. However there is still a risk of terrorist attacks and kidnap across the country. You should remain vigilant and monitor media reports. See Terrorism
The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) held a referendum on independence from Iraq on 25 September 2017. This led to ongoing tension with Federal Iraq and in the region. See Safety and security
There have been reports of significant movements of military vehicles and personnel in Kirkuk and Ninewa provinces since 12 October 2017, which have included localised exchanges of fire. The situation remains fluid. See Safety and security
Coalition forces, including the UK, continue to carry out targeted airstrikes against Daesh in northern and western Iraq. Areas recently liberated from Daesh are likely to contain remnants of war and improvised explosive devices.
The security situation throughout Iraq remains uncertain, and could deteriorate quickly. You should monitor media reporting and make sure you have robust contingency plans in place.
Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Iraq. There’s also a high kidnap threat. While attacks can take place at any time, there’s a heightened threat during religious or public holidays. See Terrorism
The government of Iraq is taking measures to improve the structural integrity of the Mosul Dam as there is a risk the dam could fail. It’s currently impossible to accurately predict if or when this might occur. See Local travel
The British Embassy in Baghdad and the British Consulate-General in Erbil are able to offer limited consular assistance only.
If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.