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Cablegate: Country Clearance Granted for Tom Rush to Travel


DE RUEHTO #1450/01 3131517
R 091517Z NOV 06




E.O. 12958: N/A

REF: STATE 184029

1. Embassy Maputo welcomes and grants country clearance
for Tom Rush to travel to Mozambique, from 13 Nov 2006
until 15 November 2006 to research and prepare a
conference briefing book highlighting issues and
opportunities in the information and communications
technology sector of Sub-Saharan Africa region. Please
advise as soon as possible regarding any schedule or
itinerary changes; refer to paragraph 13 regarding visa

2. Control Officer: Brooke Williams, Commercial
Officer at the Embassy, will be control officer. She
can be contacted at:

-- Office telephone: (258) 2149-27-97, ext.3421
-- Office fax: (258) 2149-35-74
-- Cellular: (258) 82-300-0834

3. Hotel Reservations: Post understands that the no
assistance is required.

4. Medical Services: Maputo has limited medical
facilities. Visitors will have to be medevaced in the
event of a major injury or illness. In the past, we
have had visitors nearly die because details of their
medevac insurance were not readily available. Direct
Hire employees (not contractors) of the Department of
State, USAID, Department of Defense, CDC, and Peace
Corps need not take any further action. Direct Hire
employees of other U.S Government agencies are
requested to provide to their control officer before
arrival a name and 24-hour point of contact for their
agency that can authorize medical evacuation.
Contractors are requested to provide to their control
officer before arrival the name, phone number, and
policy number of their medevac insurance provider(s)
for use in case of emergency.

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5. Health: Travelers are advised that chloroquine
resistant malaria is present in Mozambique. The most
recent guidance from the Department of State Medical
Office recommends weekly use of mefloquine as the drug
of choice for malaria prophylaxis in chloroquine-
resistant areas. Mefloquine must be started one to two
weeks before arriving at post. Daily doxycycline is an
alternative regimen. Doxycycline must be started three
days before arriving at post. Both malaria prophylaxis
medications must be continued for four weeks after
departing post.

6. Security and Required Briefing: TDY visitors
spending more than 48 hours in Mozambique must obtain a
security briefing from the Embassy's Regional Security
Office. The biggest threat facing U.S. citizens
visiting Mozambique is crime. The State Department has
designated Mozambique a critical-threat post for crime.
Street crime and vehicle hijackings are common and can
be violent. Visitors must be vigilant when out in
public areas and should not display jewellery or other
items of high value. Visitors should avoid carrying
backpacks or purses, as these can draw unwanted
attention of would-be muggers. Isolated areas, such as
along the Marginal (the Maputo road along the sea),
should be avoided as joggers and pedestrians have been
mugged frequently, even during daylight hours.

7. There are no known terrorist groups active in
Mozambique and no current indications that U.S.
citizens are being targeted by terrorist organizations.

8. The police are poorly paid, poorly equipped, and
lack the professionalism that U.S. citizens are
accustomed to in the United States. Visitors requiring
emergency assistance should not rely on local emergency
services, but should contact the Marine Security Guard
at Post One at (21) 49-27-97. Mozambican law requires
that all persons carry an identity document, such as a
passport, when out in public and produce it if
requested by police. A copy of passport identity and
visa pages is acceptable. There are certain areas in
the city of Maputo where pedestrian traffic is
prohibited, e.g., in front of the presidential offices
located north of the Hotel Polana on the seaside of
Avenida Julius Nyerere and on the Monument to
Mozambican Heroes near the Maputo airport. Such areas
are sometimes marked with international "no
trespassing" signs/symbols.

9. Overland travel after dark is extremely dangerous
due to poor road conditions, lack of emergency
services, and the increased potential for vehicle

hijackings. Official Americans serving in Mozambique,
including those on TDY, are prohibited from overland
travel outside city limits during the hours of

10. Consular Registration: All TDY visitors spending
more than two workdays in Maputo are required to
register with the Consular Section in the Chancery to
ensure that the Mission has current emergency contact
information for each visitor.

11. Financial Matters: With the exception of the main
hotels, Mozambique is essentially a cash economy.
Credit cards are of limited utility. Vendors will
accept U.S. dollars (or at times South African rand) in
lieu of the local currency, the metical. For a day
trip to Maputo, we recommend visitors bring with them
USD 100 in cash for spending money. Dollars can be
exchanged at any bank or currency exchange facility.
Embassy Maputo recommends against the use of travelers
checks, as transaction charges are uniformly high.
Please note that Embassy Maputo will need fiscal data
in the event that extensive services or goods are
required during the visit. Mozambican Airlines (LAM)
accepts the American Express credit card. Please note
that charge limits are in effect on most credit card
transactions, and hotel bills need to be settled every
few days.

12. New Currency: On July 1, 2006, Mozambique
introduced its new currency: the New Metical
(abbreviated MTn.) This currency replaces the
Metical(MT). One New Metical is equivalent to 1,000
Meticais (1 MTn = 1,000 MT.) At current exchange
rates, 1 USD equals approximately 26 MTn and 26,000 MT.
From July 1st, 2006 through December 31st, 2006, both
currencies are in circulation, and all prices are
expressed in both currencies. After December 31st,
2006, only the New Metical will be in circulation. The
most obvious differences between the two currencies are
that the New Metical notes have three fewer zeroes than
Metical notes of the same value and that the New
Metical notes are in much better condition than Metical
notes. The largest New Metical note is 1,000 MTn
(versus 500,000 MT.) The smallest New Metical note is
20 MTn (versus 10,000 MT.) For further guidance,
please refer to the images of the New Metical on our
intranet site at

13. Visas and Airport Departure Taxes: Visas are
required for entry into Mozambique, and Embassy Maputo
urges travelers to have them prior to travelling.
Travelers arriving from a country without a Mozambican
embassy can get visas at the airport or land border
entry points for 20 USD or 300 MTn. Those arriving
from a country with a Mozambican embassy can obtain
visas at the airport or land border entry points for 25
USD. There is an airport departure tax payable only in
cash, of 20 USD or equivalent in Metical or Rand for
regional flights, 8 USD for domestic flights and 20 USD
for intercontinental flights.

14. Luggage Precautions: Post urges travelers to keep
in mind restrictions on carry-on luggage on
international flights. At present, there are
restrictions on carrying liquids, gels, and cosmetics
on board international flights leaving the United

15. Travelers also should bear in mind that security of
checked baggage is a significant problem for travelers
who transit Johannesburg airport. Many items have been
stolen from checked bags, including the checked bags
themselves. The items stolen most often are electronics
(including I-Pods, cameras, and alarm clocks),
toiletries (such as cosmetics, soap, shaving kits and
cologne) and shoes (especially running/athletic
security measure that seems to meet with some success
is to have your luggage stretch-wrapped at your point
of departure. The stretch-wrapping makes it more
difficult for the thieves to gain access to your
luggage. Be aware that flights between Johannesburg
and Maputo are often serviced by a small plane with
little space for carry-on luggage. This may require
passengers to check their larger carry-on items. Please
ensure your valuables are kept in a bag small enough to
carry on your lap to keep them with you at all
times. We take this problem very seriously and are
doing what we can to help aid a solution. In brief,

-- Leave behind irreplaceable valuables;
-- Always lock your bags;
-- Have your luggage stretch-wrapped when possible;
-- Keep your valuables with you in a small carry-on;
-- Make sure that your carry-on luggage complies with
current international restrictions/regulations.


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