Israel alerting Citizens on travel to India over the New year’s holiday to stay away from large gatherings amid intelligence warnings of imminent militant attacks.
The Friday statement from the prime minister’s counter-terrorism office warned of the “possibility for terror attacks against tourist and western sites, with an emphasis on the south and west of the country, in the immediate future.”
India has been the scene of several attacks by Muslim terrorists over the years, including bomb attacks in Mumbai in 1993 and a gun and bomb attack in the same city in 2008 killed 164 people.
‘A particular emphasis should be put on events in the coming days in connection with beach and club parties celebrating the New year where a concentration of tourists will be high,’the warning said.
India is a popular destination for Israeli backpackers, especially recently discharged soldiers looking for a break after years of military service.
The Islamic State claimed responsibility for a truck attack on a Berlin Christmas market that killed 12 people this month.
It was raising the alert level in response to a concrete basic threat. The warning is believed to include Goa, which is a popular magnet for foreigners.
Other popular tourist hotpots in India include the Taj Mahal in Agra and the Red Fort in Delhi. But in recent years the state of Kerala, in south-west India, has also become a popular tourist destination and the main city, Cochin has a vibrant nightlife.
The warning also called on Israeli families to contact their relatives in India and tell them of the threat. In addition, it recommended avoiding markets, festivals and crowded shopping areas.
The directorate did not say what prompted the warning
In 2012 the wife of Israeli diplomat stationed in India, her driver and two others were wounded in a bomb attack on her car. Israel and India share close military ties.