Measles clusters across Europe

Created and/or Modified: Tuesday, November 14, 2017 03:57:34 GMT

Level: Notice
Location: Austria; Belgium; Bulgaria; Czech Republic; France; Germany; Greece; Hungary; Italy; Spain; Sweden; Switzerland; Ukraine; United Kingdom; Finland; Denmark; Ireland
Category: Measles

Latest update: cases update. New measles cases continue to be reported in a number of countries including, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Sweden and Ukraine. There have been a number of associated deaths. Portugal declared an end to the outbreak in mid-July 2017. Most cases have been in unvaccinated individuals. Measles is caused by a highly contagious virus that spreads from person-to-person via infectious droplets. Typical symptoms include fever, cough and a characteristic rash. Serious to fatal complications can occur - particularly when very young children, adults or pregnant women are infected. Travellers are advised to ensure they are immune to the disease.


Do the following:
  • Ensure you are immune to measles before travelling. People are immune if they've had the disease before or if they've had two doses of measles vaccine.
  • Keep young children and other people who are not immune to measles away from outbreak areas.
  • If you are unsure about your immunity and may have been exposed, or if you develop symptoms, seek medical attention. Call before visiting in person, so staff can protect themselves and other patients from this very contagious virus.

More detail

Clusters of measles cases have been reported in several countries across Europe, including a number of deaths. Since the beginning of the year, the following countries have all seen clusters with some experiencing large outbreaks: Austria (~85), Belgium (>300), Bulgaria (>165), Czech Republic (>135), Denmark (~4), Finland (10), France (>385), Germany (>890), Greece (>360), Hungary (>50), Ireland (~16), Italy (>4,775), Spain (~159), Portugal (declared over with 31 total), Sweden (at least 15), Switzerland (>60), Ukraine (>1627) and the United Kingdom (>950). There is a separate alert for Romania which has a very large outbreak. Most of the outbreaks are occurring in unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated people. Some of the outbreaks have been linked to infected travellers, a few small clusters have occurred in healthcare settings. Surveillance activities and vaccination campaigns are ongoing. Imported cases linked to these outbreaks have been detected in other European countries, including Iceland and Slovakia.

For more information:
  • See the Disease and Prevention article "measles" on International SOS Country Guides.
  • Contact any International SOS assistance centre.

Bonn: Expect heightened security during international conference until 17 November (Revised)

Created and/or Modified: Tuesday, November 07, 2017 04:17:23 GMT

Level: Notice
Location: Bonn - Germany
Category: Key date, Protest/Rally

Members in Bonn (North Rhine-Westphalia state) should expect heightened security and avoid all protests during the UN Climate Change Conference (COP23) until 17 November at the World Conference Center. A march is planned for 7 November from 10.30-13.30 (local time) from Beuler Bahnhof to the conference location, and a protest is planned for 11 November from 10.30 at an as-yet-undesignated location. Small scuffles erupted between the police and protesters during a related demonstration at the nearby city of Kerpen on 4 November; further protests could be disruptive and lead to localised clashes with the police.


  • Avoid all protests related to the COP23 conference due to the potential for localised unrest.
  • Anticipate heightened security measures, potentially including road closures around the summit venue, in Bonn during the conference; follow all official directives and allow additional time for travel.
  • Delays are possible at Cologne Bonn Airport (CGN) as dignitaries arrive and depart. Reconfirm schedules with your airline before setting out; we do not hold information on specific flights.
  • Expect an increased demand for accommodation and transport during the conference; book these well in advance to minimise inconvenience and reconfirm existing bookings.
  • Monitor our alerts on Germany for related updates.

Arrest of terror suspect underlines threat from militancy, capacity of security forces

Created and/or Modified: Wednesday, November 01, 2017 18:00:40 GMT

Level: Notice
Location: Germany
Category: Terror plot

Members in Germany are reminded of the need to exercise vigilance after a 19-year-old Syrian national was arrested in Schwerin (Mecklenburg-Vorpommern state) on 31 October on suspicion of planning to carry out a ‘major bomb attack' in the country. The authorities have not confirmed a specific target; however, the authorities stated that the suspect had ordered chemical materials online to build a bomb previously used by Islamist extremist groups in Europe. He was further in contact with radicalised individuals online, though there is no indication that other individuals, or any terrorist group, were directly involved in the plot.


  • Normal travel to Germany can continue.
  • There is a credible risk of terrorist attack by Islamist militants in Germany. US and British military bases and diplomatic buildings, government buildings, transport hubs, high-profile tourist attractions and high-profile commercial interests are likely targets. Be alert to suspicious behaviour and report any suspect packages to the authorities.
  • Security alerts can trigger the short-notice evacuation of transport hubs or public locations, which can cause disruption. Follow all directives issued by the authorities during any security operation and do not act on the basis of unverified information.
  • Monitor our alerts on Germany for notable updates.

More detail

According to the authorities, about 700 Islamist extremist are thought to currently reside in Germany. Several incidents in 2016, including a fatal truck-ramming attack in the capital Berlin in December and a failed suicide bombing in Ansbach (Bavaria state) in July, prompted the authorities to push for better co-ordination between national and local security forces.

This latest arrest highlights the capacity of German security and intelligence personnel to detect and act to minimise the terror threat, particularly for larger-scale plots. However, periodic attacks by isolated individuals acting alone remain inherently difficult to detect and prevent.

Disclaimer  Privacy

Travel security advice provided in this report represents the best judgment of AEA International Holdings Pte. Ltd. and Control Risks Group Holdings Ltd. Medical and health advice provided in this report represents the best judgment of AEA International Holdings Pte. Ltd. Advice in this report does not however provide a warranty of future results nor a guarantee against risk.

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