Message for U.S. Citizens Nationwide State of Emergency

Alert:  Nationwide State of Emergency in Ecuador

Location:  Nationwide

Event:  Ecuadorian President Daniel Noboa declared January 8 a nationwide state of emergency for a period of 60 days.  He later declared the existence of an “internal armed conflict” and authorized military action against organized criminal gangs across Ecuador following numerous attacks against private, public, and government institutions.  Ecuadorian media report relative calm in major cities and no major attacks since January 13 as security forces continue operations against international organized criminal groups.  The last of the 100-plus hostages being held in various prisons have all been released.

The United States Embassy and Consulate in Ecuador remain open and are conducting both routine consular appointments and emergency services for U.S. citizens.  The Ministry of Education announced January 12 that Ecuadorian schools would remain in on-line status through January 17.

The Government of Ecuador announced January 11 that, during the state of emergency, all foreign citizens entering the country via land border crossings from Colombia or Peru are required to present an apostilled certificate showing a lack of criminal record.  See Travel.State.Gov for information on how to obtain a criminal record check and apostille from the United States.  The U.S. Embassy and Consulate in Ecuador cannot assist citizens crossing a land border in obtaining this required documentation.

The guidance provided in the travel advisory of June 22, 2023 remains valid.  U.S. citizen residents and travelers should continue to exercise increased caution throughout the country, should reconsider travel to areas marked as “Level 3,” and should not travel to areas marked as “Level 4” in the advisory.  U.S. citizens should comply with all local laws, including the nationwide curfew during the announced state of emergency.  U.S. citizens should be aware that individuals not connected with criminal organizations may use the current conflict to commit crimes of opportunity.

Actions to Take:

  • Read previous security alerts at ec.usembassy.gov.
  • Check your flight status for airports in Quito and Guayaquil.
  • Monitor ECU911 for information on road closures.
  • Track official communications from the Government of Ecuador for additional information and updates to the State of Emergency.
  • Follow credible media sources for accurate information on current threats and violent activity.
  • Review the Travel Advisory and safety and security information for Ecuador at Travel.State.Gov.
  • Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security updates.
  • Follow us on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram.

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