Proposed Routes and Safety Precautions during the Ashura Holiday

This Security Message informs U.S. citizens of proposed processional routes and security precautions during the Ashura holiday. Large processions in Karachi are planned for October 22, 23 and 24. Processions will likely start from Nishter Park and Numaish, take place along Muhammad Ali Jinnah Road, and end at Hussainia Irania Mosque. The planned processional route can be found here (PDF KB).

Particular attention should be paid to areas around Lee Market, Karachi Port Trust, Khara Dar, Gurumandar and Muhammad Ali Jinnah Road. Also follow local media for updates regarding security and planned procession routes. All U.S. Mission facilities in Pakistan, including the U.S. Consulate General in Karachi, will be closed on Friday, October 23. Procession sizes and timings may vary, though Pakistani authorities expect some 20,000 people to participate in processions on October 23 and 24. There are no scheduled processions on October 25 at this time.

U.S. citizens are encouraged to avoid areas known to host large crowds or processions and should maintain a low profile. Police checkpoints will be located throughout Karachi and U.S. citizens should have their identification documents with them. U.S. citizens should be prepared for the suspension of cell phone services and have contingency plans to contact friends and loved ones in the event of an emergency.

For further information:

  • See the State Department’s travel website for the Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Pakistan Country Specific Information.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Contact the U.S. Consulate General in Karachi, located at Plot 3, 4, 5, New TPX Area Mai Kolachi Road, Karachi, by email, or by phone at (+92) (21) 3527-5000, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. For
  • After-Hours Emergencies involving U.S. citizens in Sindh or Balochistan, call 021 3527-5000 within Pakistan.
  • For other parts of Pakistan, contact the U.S. Embassy in Pakistan, located at Diplomatic Enclave, Ramna 5, Islamabad, Pakistan, by phone at (+92) (51) 208-0000 Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m.- 4:30 p.m., or by email at For After-Hours Emergencies, call 051 208-0000 within Pakistan.
  • Call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
  • Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.