Both Hezbollah and Iran continue to target Israelis traveling abroad, the Counter Terrorism Bureau cautioned on Wednesday in a pre-Passover terror warning.
Hezbollah activities center on tourist attractions frequented by Israelis, while Iran’s efforts revolve around possible attacks on Israeli diplomatic targets abroad, the warning said.
In addition to the list of countries with travel advisories (Hebrew link), the government warned that citizens traveling abroad for the Passover festival should especially avoid the Sinai Peninsula, Turkey and Tunisia, where the CTB warned of possible attacks around Lag Ba’omer.
In 2002, an al-Qaeda truck bomb targeted Lag Ba’omer celebrations in Tunisia’s Djerba Island, killing 21. More recently, on July 18, 2012, a bombing at the airport in Burgas, Bulgaria, killed five Israeli tourists. That attack was carried out by Hezbollah operatives, according to the Bulgarian government.
Also last year, authorities in Cyprus detained a Lebanese man who later admitted to conducting surveillance on Israeli tourists on behalf of Hezbollah.
Iran is also believed to be behind a series of attacks against Israelis worldwide, including a February 2012 attack that injured the wife of an Israeli Embassy worker in New Delhi and a botched attack against Israeli targets in Bangkok, Thailand.
Passover vacation is a major travel opportunity for Israelis. Last month, Channel 10 reported that security officials were working with their counterparts in several Mediterranean countries to ensure the safety of Israeli tourists ahead of the festival vacation rush.
Defense officials believe that Hezbollah has established terror infrastructures in Cyprus, Greece, Crete and Bulgaria, all favorite destinations of Israeli tourists.
Ron Friedman contributed to this report.