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                                                      Lebanon (April 12, 2006)
                                                      Travel Report
                                                      Government of Canada

                           TRAVEL REPORT

                                Last Updated: April 12, 2006 11:52 EDT
                                     Still Valid: May 10, 2006 5:47 EDT

The level of Travel Warning in this report has not changed. Section 8
has been updated.


OFFICIAL WARNING: Foreign Affairs Canada advises against all
travel to the region(s) specified below. (IDW5)

You are advised against all travel south of Tyre (Sur), especially to the
areas near the border with Israel. There is considerable military activity
in the areas around the Shebaa Farms. The security situation remains
volatile. As well, you are advised against all travel to Palestinian refugee
camps (including areas in and around Saidon), where the security
situation is often tense. Tensions are high due to recent events, and
Canadians who need to visit these areas should exercise the utmost
caution and discretion.

There is an increased threat of terrorism in Lebanon due to heightened
tensions and an ongoing political crisis. A series of targeted bombings
and grenade attacks have taken place in different areas of Beirut since
February 2004, injuring dozens and resulting in several deaths. The
largest of these bombings took place on February 14, 2005, killing
former Prime Minister Rafic Hariri and several others. Massive public
protests in Beirut, Saidon, and other cities, both for and against the
Syrian military presence in Lebanon, were followed by Syria's removal
of its forces from Lebanon in April 2005.

On February 5, 2006, a large and violent demonstration took place in
Achrafieh, a district of Beirut. Canadians should avoid large gatherings
and demonstrations, pay close attention to their personal security, and

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monitor the media for updates.

Heightened tensions throughout the region, together with increased
threats globally from terrorism, put Canadians at greater risk. Canadians
should be aware of the global risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks,
including those against civilian targets, such as pedestrian promenades,
shopping malls, open markets, restaurants, discotheques, cinemas, and
other places frequented by foreigners. Canadians should maintain a high
level of personal security awareness at all times, as the security situation
could deteriorate rapidly without notice. Exercise appropriate caution in
large gatherings and crowded places. Canadians should monitor local
developments and register and remain in regular contact with the
Embassy of Canada in Beirut or Foreign Affairs Canada (call collect

The violence in Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza has raised the
possibility of demonstrations in support of Palestinians throughout the
Middle East and elsewhere in the world. While Lebanese authorities
have acted to prevent demonstrations from becoming violent, the
potential for further protests remains high. Security conditions remain
unpredictable. Canadian travellers should follow events closely, remain
alert to the changing situation, exercise appropriate caution, avoid
demonstrations, and take appropriate measures to maintain their security.
These measures include being aware of one's surroundings and keeping a
low profile. Canadians should listen to and observe all warnings issued
by Lebanese authorities and take appropriate precautions. Lebanon is
subject to Israeli overflights breaking the sound barrier, causing sonic
booms that can be confused with the sound of detonation.

The Hezbollah maintains a presence in the south and several other areas,
including the Bekaa Valley. Forces other than the Lebanese military
exert a large amount of control in certain areas, especially in the Bekaa
Valley and in southern Lebanon.

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Affairs Canada offers a registration service for Canadians travelling or
residing abroad. Canadians who choose to travel to the region(s)
specified despite this warning should register with the responsible
Canadian government office in this country. Registration can be done
on-line or by calling the responsible Canadian government office abroad
to request a registration form. Canadians visiting other areas of the
country for three months or more should also register. Canadians visiting
for less than three months are strongly advised to: (a) leave a detailed
travel itinerary and contact information with family or friends in Canada;
(b) provide family with the emergency number for Foreign Affairs
Canada (1 800 267-6788 or 613-944-6788); and (c) keep the phone
number of the responsible Canadian government office on hand (see
Section 7 below).


There is a highly visible security presence throughout the country.
Canadians should carry full personal documentation and obey the
instructions of security personnel. Canadians of Lebanese descent who
carry Lebanese papers will be treated as Lebanese nationals by security
officials. Canadian officials may be limited in their ability to provide
consular services in cases where a dual national runs into difficulty.

Landmines and unexploded ordnance pose a significant threat,
particularly in the south. Travellers should be aware of posted landmine
warnings, stay on paved roads, and avoid walking or driving cross-

The crime rate is moderate. Petty crime, car thefts, and residential break-
ins occur. Exercise normal safety precautions and ensure personal
belongings, passports, and other travel documents are secure. Keep
photocopies of all your documents in safe-keeping facilities. For
practical tips of specific interest to female travellers, consult our
publication Her Own Way. Travellers may call Touristic Control at (01)
343-209 in the event of a problem.

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Drive defensively, as traffic accidents are a common cause of death and
injury. Congestion and aggressive drivers are a problem in cities. Rural
roads are poorly maintained, and drivers have little regard for traffic
laws. Pedestrians should exercise great caution.

An International Driving Permit (IDP) is recommended. The IDP is an
internationally recognized document that, when accompanied by a valid
Canadian (i.e., provincial) driver’s licence, allows you to drive in over
160 countries without a specific test. Its purpose is to overcome
difficulties that you may have while travelling in other countries with
widely varying licence requirements. It is printed in the six United
Nations official languages (Arabic, English, French, Spanish, Russian,
and Chinese), plus German, Italian, the Scandinavian languages, and
Portuguese. The IDP can also be a useful form of picture identification
in case of a lost or stolen passport. An IDP is valid for one year from the
date of issue. The Canadian Automobile Association (CAA) is the sole
issuer of the IDP in Canada.


Lebanon is located in a seismic zone, although there have been no major
earth tremors in recent years. Dust storms and sand storms frequently
occur. Canadians should know the address and telephone number of the
Canadian Embassy in Beirut (see below) in the event of an emergency.


You are subject to local laws. A serious violation may lead to a jail or
death sentence. The sentence will be served in local prisons.

Canadians arrested or detained have the right to contact the responsible
Canadian government office (embassy, high commission, etc.) listed
below. Arresting officials have a responsibility to assist you in doing so.
Canadian consular officials can provide a list of local lawyers upon

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Foreign Affairs Canada publishes A Guide for Canadians Imprisoned
Abroad, specifically targeted at incarcerated Canadians. Its prime
objective is to inform Canadian detainees, their families, and friends
about available assistance and advice.

Possession, use, or trafficking of illegal drugs may result in jail
sentences and heavy fines. Individuals charged with drug offences can
expect to remain in jail and to be denied bail while judicial authorities
prepare their cases for prosecution.

Canadians should present themselves as Canadian to foreign authorities
and use their Canadian passport at all times. Holding dual Canadian-
Lebanese nationality may limit the ability of Canadian officials to
provide consular services. Lebanese males (18 to 30 years old) are
subject to mandatory one-year military service. Dual nationals who visit
Lebanon are not exempt, unless permitted by Lebanese law. Dual
national males should check with the Lebanese Embassy in Ottawa (see
below) to determine if they are eligible for an exemption and to obtain
information on the procedures for securing any allowable exemption
prior to their departure from Canada. Lebanese males of military-service
age will be apprehended at the airport upon arrival. They should present,
ready for inspection, all required documents (including all expired
Canadian passports issued in the last five years and a letter from the
Lebanese Embassy regarding permanent residency status). They will
also be directed by airport authorities to report to the Ministry of
Defence. For more information on military service in Lebanon, please
visit the Web site of the Lebanese Army.

The dress code in Lebanon is more relaxed than in most countries in the
Middle East. However, modest dress and behaviour consistent with local
customs and sensitivities are recommended. Sleeveless garments and
shorts may be acceptable at tourist locations but should be avoided
elsewhere, especially when visiting sites of religious significance, such
as churches and mosques. Physical contact between men and women

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should also be avoided in public places.

During the lunar month of Ramadan (the ninth month of the Muslim
calendar), visitors should use discretion when drinking, eating, and
smoking in public between sunrise and sunset. Ramadan is expected to
begin on or about October 4, 2005.

Homosexual activity is illegal.

Exercise caution when taking photographs of non-tourist sites and areas
around Hezbollah quarters. It is prohibited to photograph or videotape
government buildings, military personnel, equipment, or installations.


You can obtain consular assistance and further information at the
following address:

Lebanon - BEIRUT, Embassy of Canada
Address: First Floor, Coolrite Building, 43 Jal El Dib Highway, Beirut,
Postal Address: P.O. Box 60163, Jal El Dib, Lebanon
Tel.: 961 (4) 713-900
Fax: 961 (4) 710-595

For emergency assistance after hours, call the Canadian Embassy in
Beirut and follow the instructions. You may also make a collect call to
the Department in Ottawa at 613-996-8885 or use the services offered by
Canada Direct.

Canada Direct, offered by Canada's major telecommunications
companies, provides travellers with toll-free and hassle-free access to the
Canadian telephone network. The Canada Direct access number from
Lebanon is 01-423-935 (not available from pay phones). A Canadian

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operator is always available. For more information, call 1 800 561-8868
or visit the Canada Direct Web site.


It is the sole prerogative of each country to determine who is allowed
to enter. All countries have special requirements for persons intending
to reside for extended periods (usually more than 90 days) or who plan
to work, study, or engage in non-tourist activities. To obtain information
on specific entry requirements, contact the nearest diplomatic or
consular office of the country or countries to be visited. Conditions are
subject to change.

Selling, altering, or allowing another person to use your passport is a
criminal offence. It could lead to the laying of charges and imprisonment
if convicted. It could also lead to the denial of future passport services.

Any adult travelling with children may be required to show evidence of
parental/custodial and/or access rights. Foreign and Canadian authorities
may also require evidence that the adult has the consent of the parents,
legal guardian, and/or the court to travel with the children. Some
countries may not permit children to enter or, in some cases, leave the
country without proper documentation such as a letter of consent or a
court order.

A valid Canadian passport is required for Canadians intending to visit
Lebanon. The passport should be valid for at least six months beyond the
date of your expected departure from the country. Canadians must also
be in possession of a visa. Although tourist visas are now available at a
port of entry, Canadians should ensure that they obtain their Lebanese
visa prior to their arrival.

Canadians have been denied entry into Lebanon because their passports
bear: (a) an Israeli visa; (b) an Israeli border stamp; or (c) an Egyptian or
Jordanian border stamp issued by an office bordering Israel (such a
stamp would indicate the traveller has been to Israel). Visitors with

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Israeli stamps in their passports will be refused entry into Lebanon and
those with dual citizenship (Lebanese-Canadian) will immediately be
taken into custody for questioning before potentially being granted entry
into the country.

Canadians travelling in the Middle East are advised that their passports
could come under increased scrutiny by immigration authorities, and the
authenticity of their passports could be questioned because of incidents
of possible misuse. Canadians experiencing problems should contact the
nearest Canadian government office or Foreign Affairs Canada in
Ottawa for advice and assistance.

Tourist Visa: Required
Business Visa: Required
Student Visa: Required

Special and diplomatic passport holders should verify visa requirements
for this and other countries, as they may differ from those that apply to
regular passport holders.

Your passport must show a Lebanese entry visa and immigration entry
stamp to exit the country. Persons who acquire a new passport while in
Lebanon must present their old passport containing these items to
authorities upon departure. Lebanese-Canadians travelling on a
Canadian passport are regarded as foreigners for the purposes of a visa.
Such persons must obtain an exit visa if they have not obtained an entry
visa in their Canadian passport upon arrival or are not in possession of a
valid Lebanese passport.

An expired entry visa must be extended by Lebanese authorities or else
you will not be allowed to leave the country. Extensions of one month
(on three-month visas) are given by the Airport Branch of General
Security. However, service at the airport is granted only if the visa has
not already been extended. All other extension cases are treated by the
Foreign Department of General Security at the Ministry of Foreign
Affairs, which provides one-week extensions. In general, persons who

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entered Lebanon prior to August 1997 can obtain an exit visa free of
charge, but those who entered after August 1997 may have to pay for
one. If your entry visa has expired and you have overstayed it by less
than one year, an extension (or exit visa) will be granted free of charge.
If you have overstayed your entry visa by more than one year, you will
be required to pay a fine.

Although same-sex marriages are legal in Canada, many countries do not
recognize them. Attempting to enter as a same-sex married couple may
result in refusal by local officials. For more information, contact the
foreign government office accredited to Canada.

Foreign Affairs Canada’s Office of Protocol provides contact details for
the Embassy of Lebanon and its consulates, where you can obtain further
information on entry and exit requirements.


The currency is the Lebanese pound (LBP). Some establishments will
accept payment in U.S. dollars but may return change in Lebanese
pounds. Credit cards are widely accepted in hotels, restaurants, and
shops. Canadian currency and traveller's cheques are not widely
accepted worldwide.

Check with your bank for information on ATM services in other
countries. You can also check the VISA ATM locator page or the
MasterCard ATM locator page for the addresses of ATMs around the
world. Your bank can advise if you need a new personal identification
number (PIN) for overseas access to your account. Credit cards and debit
cards should be used with caution due to the potential for fraud and other
criminal activity. ATMs should be used during business hours inside a
bank, supermarket, or large commercial building. Leave copies of your
card numbers with a family member in case of emergency.

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Lebanon (capital: Beirut) is located in the Middle East, bordered by the
Mediterranean Sea, between Israel and Syria. The official language is
Arabic. English and French are often spoken in large establishments,
such as hotels, banks, department stores, and restaurants. Lebanon is a
parliamentary republic with a National Assembly equally divided
between Christians and Muslims.

Radio Canada International (RCI) broadcasts on shortwave to this
country. For a schedule of times and frequency of broadcasts, check the
RCI Web site. You may also e-mail RCI at or call 514-


The Public Health Agency of Canada and the World Health
Organization (WHO) report on disease outbreaks that occur throughout
the world. For the latest travel health advisories and related information,
visit the Public Health Agency of Canada’s Travel Medicine Program
Web site.

The Public Health Agency of Canada strongly recommends that your
travel plans include contacting a travel medicine clinic or physician six
to eight weeks before departure. Based on your individual risk
assessment, a health care professional can determine your need for
immunizations and/or preventive medication and advise you on
precautions to avoid disease. Travellers are reminded to ensure that their
routine (childhood) immunizations (e.g., tetanus, diphtheria, polio, and
measles) are up to date.

Standards of medical care may differ from those in Canada. Treatment
may be expensive, and payment in advance may be required. Travellers
are advised to arrange for medical insurance prior to departure.
Prescription medications should be kept in the original container and

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packed in carry-on luggage.

The Public Health Agency of Canada also recommends that travellers
who become sick or feel unwell on their return to Canada seek a medical
assessment with their personal physician. Travellers should inform their
physician that they have been travelling or living outside of Canada.


Modern medical care and medicines are widely available in Beirut and
surrounding areas. Such facilities are not always available in outlying
areas. Medical services can be very expensive, and payment in advance
is often required. A list of local medical and dental practitioners is
available from the Canadian Embassy in Beirut upon request.

Increased awareness is necessary when eating and drinking due to the
effect of electrical power disruptions on refrigeration.


Please consult the Current Issue on returning to Canada.


Provincial and territorial authorities in Canada are responsible for
authorizing international adoptions. If you are thinking of adopting a
child from another country, you must first obtain information about the
adoption regulations of the province or territory in which the child will
reside. While adoption is a provincial/territorial responsibility,
Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is responsible for allowing
an adopted child entry into Canada. Entry can be refused if the child
does not hold the appropriate immigrant visa. A visa may be denied,
even if the adoption has already been completed. For more information
contact CIC at 1 888 242-2100 (in Canada only), check the CIC Web
site or contact your provincial or territorial government.

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  Please consult our Traveller's Checklist.


  Do not rely on your provincial health plan to cover all expenses if you
  get sick or are injured while abroad. It may cover nothing or only a
  portion of the costs. Understand the terms of your supplementary
  insurance policy. Some credit cards offer their holders health and travel
  insurance. Do not assume the card alone provides adequate coverage.
  Carry details of your insurance with you. Also, tell your travel agent, a
  friend or relative, and/or travelling companion how to contact your
  insurer. Get a detailed invoice from the doctor or hospital before you
  return to Canada. Always submit original receipts for any medical
  services or prescriptions received abroad. Most insurance companies will
  not accept copies or faxes.

  Cancelling a scheduled trip abroad could cost you money. Before
  cancelling a scheduled trip, you should discuss the matter with your
  travel agent, your travel insurer, or the airline. The decision to travel is
  the sole responsibility of the traveller.



  18. ANNEX


This Travel Report reflects upon current (relative to the date of its release by
the Canadian Government) country conditions. In order to discern the
accuracy and reliability of the U.S. Department of State’s current Country
Reports on Human Rights Practices, you are invited to compare and
contrast the two. Other authoritative sources reflecting upon current country

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conditions include the U.S. Department of State’s Travel Warnings and
Advisories, U.K. Foreign Office Travel Advisories, U.K. Home Office
Country Reports, and the Australian Government’s Travel Alerts and
Advisories. For a more comprehensive understanding of current country
conditions, Political Asylum Research and Documentation Service
(PARDS) LLC can provide you with access to an internationally known and
respected, country-specific expert.

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                          Phone: 1 (609) 497 – 7663

Internal File: Lebanon(TravelReport)Canada(April12,2006)

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