U.S. Mission to Pakistan
Security Message for U.S. Citizens: Pakistan Independence Day, August 14
August 11, 2017
The American Embassy in Islamabad cautions U.S. citizens in Pakistan that local celebrations of Pakistan Independence Day have historically led to significant pedestrian and vehicular traffic congestion throughout Pakistan, particularly in the larger cities, gatherings of large crowds, and frequent celebratory gunfire. In the past, cell phone networks have been suspended during official commemoration ceremonies. Celebrations of Independence Day are expected to begin the evening of August 13 and end in the early morning of the 15th.
Remember that public areas where large groups gather are of concern and citizens are reminded to use caution in public. We recommend that U.S. citizens establish and maintain vigilant personal security practices. U.S. citizens should minimize the number and duration of trips to public markets, restaurants, hotels, places of worship, and other locations where large numbers of people congregate. U.S. citizens should monitor Pakistani media reports for the latest security news and situational awareness.
You can expect the following:
- Larger than normal crowds at markets, restaurants and parks;
- Heavier vehicle traffic;
- A larger police presence and additional police checkpoints;
- Unexpected road closures;
- Fireworks and celebratory gunfire;
- The closure of Jinnah Avenue in the Blue Area for celebrations on August 14;
- Increased checkpoints along Constitution Avenue; and
- A 31-gun salute at dawn on Monday, August 14.
Due to security concerns surrounding these celebrations, the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad has restricted the movement of its American personnel from August 12 through August 14.
Consular services in Pakistan are available in Karachi, Lahore, and Islamabad. The consulate in Peshawar is not providing consular services at this time.
For Further Information:
· Contact the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad, located at Diplomatic Enclave, Ramna 5, +92 51 201 4000. (Calling within Pakistan, dial 051 201 4000.) This number also is available 24 hours a day for emergencies involving U.S. citizens in other parts of Pakistan. See also http://islamabad.usembassy.gov.
· Contact the U.S. Consulate in Karachi, located at Plot No. 3-5, TPX Area, Mai Kolachi Road, Karachi, at +92 21 3527 5000. (Calling within Pakistan, dial 021 3527 5000.) This number is available 24 hours a day for emergencies involving U.S. citizens in the provinces of Sindh and Balochistan. See also http://karachi.usconsulate.gov.
· Contact the Contact the U.S. Consulate in Lahore, located at 50 Shahrah-E-Abdul Hameed Bin Badees (Old Empress Road), at +92 42 3603 4000. (Calling within Pakistan, dial 042 3603 4000.) This number is available 24 hours a day for emergencies involving U.S. citizens in the province of Punjab south of the Jehlum River and the district of Bhakkar. See also Consulate General Lahore’s section on the Mission Pakistan webpage.
· 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).