INDEPENDENT NEWS

Cablegate: Country Clearance for Tunis Ito, Timothy Powell

Published: Sun 17 Dec 2006 10:22 AM
VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB
DE RUEHKI #1765/01 3511022
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 171022Z DEC 06
FM AMEMBASSY KINSHASA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0086
RUEHTU/AMEMBASSY TUNIS
INFO RUDKA/ATO EUROPE
RUEHKI/AMEMBASSY KINSHASA
UNCLAS KINSHASA 01765
SIPDIS
ACTION: NONE INFO: AF/COMMO, AF/INT, AF/LGL, AF/MAMBA, AF/SEC, AF/SG,
C/SAD, CAC/TIS, CE/RPCI, CIC/AF, CIC/ISE, CIC/TCG, CIRAS, CMS/ICCIO,
CNC/CNOG, CNC/LNCHPN, CNC/SEC, CNCITGARC, CTC/FINO, CTC/OPSCTR,
CTC/SEC, CTC/WMD, CTCARCHIVE, CTCTERR, DC/SAD, DCI/CSE, DONOVA,
F/ZAIRE, GCS/IPD, GCS/FOD, GDC/OCB, IOC/AG, IOC/COG, IOC/EDG,
IOC/IOTF, IOC/LIA, IOC/PAG, IOC/REQ, IOC/RR, IOC/SKWS, IOC/VWI,
NCI/SPB, NCS/OTO, NHTC/AF, NR/INTEL, ODPD, PCAS/IAG, PCAS/INT,
PCAS/PG, SAD/CIG, SAD/DMC, SAD/ST, SANCTUM, FILE, STATDICT, IRL
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OTRA CG
SUBJECT: COUNTRY CLEARANCE FOR TUNIS ITO, TIMOTHY POWELL
REF: SECSTATE 100399
1. POST GRANTS COUNTRY CLEARANCE AND WELCOMES THE ARRIVAL OF TIMOTHY
POWELL TO THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO (DRC) FROM DEC 21, 2006 TO
JAN 23, 2007 FOR TEMPORARY ASSISTANCE TO POST.
2. POINT OF CONTACT
BARRY GREENE WILL BE THE CONTROL OFFICER FOR THE VISIT AND CAN BE
REACHED AT:
OFFICE PHONE: 011-243-81-225-5872 X2218
CELL PHONE: 011-243-81-884-0914
IVG: 8-934-2218
3. VISA REQUIREMENTS
A VALID CONGOLESE VISA IS REQUIRED OF ALL AMERICAN PASSPORT HOLDERS,
WHETHER DIPLOMATIC, OFFICIAL OR TOURIST.
4. FISCAL DATA REQUIREMENTS
FISCAL DATA OR CREDIT CARD INFO MUST BE PROVIDED IN ADVANCE TO THE
CONTROL OFFICER LISTED ABOVE FOR ANY ASSISTANCE REQUIRED, INCLUDING
MEET AND ASSIST AT THE AIRPORT, HOTEL
RESERVATIONS, CELL PHONES, AIRPORT EXPEDITORS,
TRANSLATORS/INTERPRETERS, ETC. THE EMBASSY IS UNABLE TO MAKE HOTEL
RESERVATIONS OR RENTAL ARRANGEMENTS WITHOUT FINANCIAL INFORMATION.
5. ALL VISITS MUST COMMENCE IN KINSHASA
AT THE AMBASSADOR'S REQUEST, ALL VISITS TO THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF
CONGO, WHICH REQUIRE COUNTRY CLEARANCE, ARE TO COMMENCE IN KINSHASA,
THE COUNTRY'S CAPITAL. TRAVEL TO
OTHER REGIONS OF THE COUNTRY INCLUDING THE KIVUS, ORIENTALE AND
MANIEMA PROVINCES, IS TO BE UNDERTAKEN FROM KINSHASA. EMBASSY
KINSHASA WILL PROVIDE ASSISTANCE WITH THESE TRAVEL
ARRANGEMENTS. AS TRAVEL IN THE CONGO CAN BE COMPLICATED, VISITORS
SHOULD CONSULT WITH THEIR EMBASSY CONTROL OFFICER EARLY IN THE
PLANNING PROCESS.
6. AIRPORT ADVICE FOR ARRIVING PASSENGERS
PROCEDURES AT NDJILI AIRPORT ARE CHANGING AS AIRPORT OFFICIALS TRY TO
STRENGTHEN SECURITY PROCEDURES. AT THIS TIME, EMBASSY EXPEDITORS ARE
NO LONGER ALLOWED IN THE ARRIVALS HALL AND CAN PROVIDE ASSISTANCE
ONLY AFTER TRAVELERS PASS THROUGH IMMIGRATION CONTROL. AFTER
DEPLANING AND ENTERING THE ARRIVALS HALL, TRAVELERS SHOULD PROCEED TO
THE "OFFICIAL VIP/DIPLOMAT" LINE, WITH PASSPORTS AND HEALTH
CERTIFICATES READY FOR PRESENTATION TO THE IMMIGRATION OFFICIALS.
AFTER CLEARING IMMIGRATION, TRAVELERS WILL BE MET ON THE OTHER SIDE
OF THE BOOTH BY THE EMBASSY EXPEDITOR, HOLDING A PLACARD WITH THE
NAMES OF TRAVELERS BEING MET. THE EXPEDITOR WILL THEN COLLECT
BAGGAGE CLAIM TICKETS AND PASSPORTS, COLLECT THE BAGS, AND THEN TAKE
TRAVELERS OUTSIDE TO THE EMBASSY VEHICLES. ONCE OUTSIDE THE
TERMINAL, LOCAL PORTERS WILL CARRY YOUR BAGS TO THE EMBASSY VEHICLE.
PLEASE BE PREPARED TO GIVE THE EXPEDITOR ONE USD PER BAG TO PAY THE
PORTERS. WHILE AT THE AIRPORT, TRAVELERS ARE WARNED TO NOT, REPEAT
NOT, PAY MONEY OR GIVE THEIR DOCUMENTS TO ANYONE OTHER THAN THE
EMBASSY EXPEDITOR. THIS ALSO APPLIES TO INDIVIDUALS IN UNIFORM, WHO
MAY OFFER THEIR SERVICES. BE POLITE BUT DO NOT ACCEPT THEIR
ASSISTANCE.
7. CUSTOMS AND ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT
IF YOU WILL BE CARRYING TOOLS, HEAVY CASES, OR ANY ELECTRONIC
EQUIPMENT OTHER THAN PERSONAL DEVICES, CONTACT YOUR CONTROL OFFICER
WITH SPECIFIC INFORMATION THAT CAN BE
PASSED TO THE EXPEDITOR FOR ASSISTANCE WITH CUSTOMS CLEARANCE.
8. ACCOMMODATION
ONE SINGLE ROOM HAS BEEN BOOKED AT GRAND HOTEL, TEL:
011-243-89-46-660. THE ROOM PRICE IS WITHIN PER DIEM AND INCLUDES
BREAKFAST.
9. SECURITY
KINSHASA IS A CRITICAL THREAT CRIME POST. ALTHOUGH THERE IS NO
SPECIFIC THREAT TARGETING AMERICANS, ALL VISITORS SHOULD REMAIN
VIGILANT AND CAUTIOUS DURING THEIR STAY IN KINSHASA. BECAUSE OF
POLITICAL INSTABILITY IN PARTS OF THE COUNTRY, ALL TRAVEL OUTSIDE OF
KINSHASA MUST BE APPROVED BY THE RSO. YOUR CONTROL OFFICER WILL MAKE
RESERVATIONS FOR YOU AT ONE OF THE HOTELS THE REGIONAL SECURITY
OFFICE HAS APPROVED FOR VISITORS. THE RSO ADVISES THAT YOU EXERCISE
CAUTION IN THE AREAS AROUND THESE HOTELS, AND THAT YOU NOT TRAVEL
AFTER NIGHTFALL UNLESS ACCOMPANIED BY SOMEONE FAMILIAR WITH THE
SECURITY SITUATION IN KINSHASA. TDY PERSONNEL SHOULD NOT USE ANY
FORM OF LOCAL TRANSPORTATION AND SHOULD REFRAIN FROM DISPLAYING/USING
CAMERAS IN PUBLIC. A RECENT SCAM INVOLVES INDIVIDUALS IN CIVILIAN
CLOTHES CLAIMING TO BE CONGOLESE POLICE/SECURITY OFFICIALS WHO
APPROACH UNSUSPECTING EXPATRIATES ON THE STREET AND DEMAND TO SEE
THEIR PASSPORT OR OTHER IDENTIFICATION DOCUMENTS. THEY TRY AND
CONVINCE THE WOULD-BE VICTIM TO GET IN THEIR
UNMARKED VEHICLE AND ACCOMPANY THEM TO THE LOCAL POLICE PRECINCT. IF
YOU ARE ON THE STREET AND APPROACHED BY SOMEONE CLAIMING TO BE A
POLICE OR SECURITY OFFICIAL, IDENTIFY YOURSELF AS A DIPLOMAT WORKING
AT THE U.S. EMBASSY, WALK BRISKLY AWAY, AND MAKE SURE TO REPORT THE
INCIDENT TO THE RSO OR POST ONE AS SOON AS YOU HAVE ACCESS TO A
PHONE. DO NOT APPROACH OR GET IN THEIR VEHICLE.
10. CURRENCY
THE USE OF DOLLARS IN THE DRC IS LEGAL AND ACCEPTABLE FOR MOST
TRANSACTIONS. TRAVELERS ARRIVING IN THE DRC WITH MORE THAN USD
10,000 MUST FILL OUT A CURRENCY DECLARATION.
TRAVELERS DEPARTING THE DRC ARE NOT ALLOWED TO TAKE OUT MORE THAN USD
10,000 IN CASH. PLEASE NOTE THAT ATMS ARE NOT AVAILABLE IN CONGO.
HOWEVER, USG PERSONNEL ARE AUTHORIZED USD AND FRANC CONGOLAIS
ACCOMMODATION EXCHANGE AT THE EMBASSY AND/OR USAID CASHIER;
PERSONAL OR TRAVELERS' CHECKS ARE ACCEPTABLE. MOST PERSONNEL USE
FRANC CONGOLAIS ONLY FOR SMALL PURCHASES AND TIPS. AMERICAN EXPRESS,
VISA, MASTER CARD, AND DINER'S CLUB ARE
ACCEPTED IN PAYMENT OF BILLS AT KINSHASA'S TWO MAJOR HOTELS. HOWEVER,
VERY FEW OTHER BUSINESSES IN THE CONGO ACCEPT CREDIT CARDS AND THEIR
USE OUTSIDE OF THE MAJOR HOTELS IS
DISCOURAGED. CASHING TRAVELERS CHECKS OUTSIDE THE EMBASSY IS
GENERALLY NOT ADVISED BECAUSE BANKS CHARGE SUBSTANTIAL FEES FOR
CASHING THEM; TRAVELERS CHECKS ARE RARELY ACCEPTED AT ALL OUTSIDE OF
KINSHASA.
11. MEDICAL
ACCESS TO THE EMBASSY HEALTH UNIT IS AVAILABLE FOR US CITIZEN,
DIRECT-HIRE USG EMPLOYEES AND THEIR ELIGIBLE FAMILY MEMBERS. IF YOU
HAVE BEEN OR WILL BE POSTED MORE THAN 60
DAYS OVERSEAS IN A CALENDAR YEAR (NOT NECESSARILY CONSECUTIVE), YOU
MUST PROVIDE PROOF OF A DEPARTMENT OF STATE MEDICAL CLEARANCE FROM
M/MED TO QUALIFY FOR ACCESS TO THE HEALTH UNIT. OFFICIAL VISITORS
WHO ARE OVERSEAS LESS THAN 60 DAYS IN A CALENDAR YEAR ARE NOT
REQUIRED TO HAVE MEDICAL CLEARANCE AND ARE AUTHORIZED EMERGENCY, BUT
NOT ROUTINE, USE OF THE HEALTH UNIT. OTHER OFFICIAL VISITORS MAY
RECEIVE HEALTH UNIT SERVICES IF THEY MEET THE FOLLOWING CRITERIA: 1)
AN INDIVIDUAL EMPLOYMENT RELATIONSHIP WITH THE USG, 2) A MED
WASHINGTON CLEARANCE, AND 3) A USG AGENCY THAT GUARANTEES PAYMENT FOR
MEDICAL EXPENSES AND/OR PERSONAL OVERSEAS HEALTH AND MEDEVAC
INSURANCE. VISITORS WITHOUT HEALTH UNIT ACCESS WILL BE REFERRED TO A
LOCAL MEDICAL CLINIC, WHICH PROVIDES ALL EMERGENCY AND NON-ROUTINE
MEDICAL CARE FOR EMBASSY EMPLOYEES AND FAMILY MEMBERS.
MALARIA: CONGO IS A MALARIA-AFFECTED AREA. ALL TRAVELERS SHOULD
CONSULT WITH MEDICAL PERSONNEL AND TAKE MALARIA PROPHYLACTICS AS
APPROPRIATE, BEFORE ARRIVING IN KINSHASA.
YELLOW FEVER: YOU MUST HAVE A VALID YELLOW FEVER VACCINATION AND YOUR
YELLOW VACCINATION CARD WHEN YOU ARRIVE. YOU MAY BE CHARGED A FINE
OF $50-$100 WITHOUT PROOF OF VACCINATION.
12. ACCESS TO CONTROLLED ACCESS AREAS
EACH VISITOR TO KINSHASA REQUIRING UNESCORTED ACCESS TO CONTROLLED
ACCESS AREAS (CAA) MUST ARRANGE FOR THEIR SPONSORING AGENCY OR
SENDING POST TO FORWARD THEIR SECURITY CLEARANCE TO THE RSO BY
TELEGRAM IN ADVANCE OF THE VISIT. IN ACCORDANCE WITH REGULATIONS, A
DIPLOMATIC PASSPORT OR DEPARTMENT OF STATE IDENTIFICATION CARD IS NOT
SUFFICIENT TO ALLOW UNESCORTED ACCESS TO CAA'S. KINSHASA DOES NOT
HAVE THE RESOURCES TO ESCORT VISITORS WHO ARRIVE WITHOUT PROPER
ADVANCE SECURITY CLEARANCE.
13. GOVERNMENT-OWNED THUMB/FLASH DRIVES
DRIVES WITH PROPER CLASSIFICATION LABEL CAN BE USED AT POST, BUT ONLY
ON OPEN NET COMPUTERS OUTSIDE OF THE CONTROLLED ACCESS AREA (CAA).
THESE DEVICES CANNOT BE USED ON ANY CLASSIFIED COMPUTERS AT POST.
THUMB/FLASH DRIVES MUST BE HAND CARRIED AND PROTECTED THE SAME AS A
LAPTOP. THE DRIVE(S) COULD BE POUCHED IN ADVANCE TO THE CONTROL
OFFICER OR THE IMO. UPON ARRIVAL AT POST, THE CONTROL OFFICER WILL
PROVIDE A THUMB/FLASH DRIVE REQUEST FORM THAT SHOULD BE COMPLETED AND
TAKEN TO THE IPC OR ISC ALONG WITH THE FLASH DRIVE BEFORE USE.
QUESTIONS SHOULD BE DIRECTED TO INFORMATION MANAGEMENT OFFICER (IMO)
MBENNAVG@STATE.GOV OR INFORMATION SYSTEMS SECURITY OFFICER (ISSO)
BAKKENCA@STATE.GOV.
14. YOU MAY VISIT THE EMBASSY'S INTRANET WEBSITE AT
HTTP://KINSHASA.STATE.GOV. WHILE STILL UNDER CONSTRUCTION,
INFORMATION IS BEING ADDED DAILY THAT YOU MAY FIND USEFUL.
15. HAVE A GOOD TRIP. POST LOOKS FORWARD TO SEEING YOU IN KINSHASA.
MEECE
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