Summary

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Preparations for the February 2019 Presidential election have now begun in Dakar and across the country.

Avoid any demonstrations or large gatherings of people.

Terrorists are likely to try to carry out attacks in Senegal. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places visited by foreigners. See Terrorism

The Casamance region has suffered for decades from low intensity separatist violence, largely directed at Senegalese security forces. While the security situation has improved significantly since 2012, there are occasionally violent incidents. On 7 January 2018, 14 Senegalese nationals were killed, and a further seven injured in an attack by gunmen in the Casamance region in the south of Senegal. The incident took place in the forest of Boffa-Bayotte, in the département of Ziguinchor. On 5 August 2018, 4 Senegalese nationals involved in gathering wood disappeared in Boussoloum forest, Zinguichor. There’s a lower level of risk in the main tourist areas of the Casamance. See Local travel

You should be vigilant when travelling in the Casamance region to the west of Kolda, and where possible you should avoid travelling at night, and stick to the main road from Ziguinchor to Cap Skirring and the main road north of the Guinea-Bissau/Senegal border from Sao Domingos to Ziguinchor. See Local travel

Pickpocketing and street crime are common in parts of Dakar, particularly around Place de l’Indépendance, the central area of the Plateau and the Western Corniche. See Safety and security

Be cautious when changing cash given the risk of false money circulating.

Most visits to Senegal are trouble-free.

As of mid-October 2018, an outbreak of dengue fever has been reported in Touba, in Senegal’s central region. If you’re visiting the city or surrounding area, including during the Magal de Touba religious festival on 27 October, you should exercise caution and take steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. For more information on the outbreak, visit the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC) website. See Health

UK health authorities have classified Senegal as having a risk of Zika virus transmission. For information and advice about the risks associated with Zika virus, visit the NaTHNaC website

The UNAIDS 2016 Report on the Global AIDS Epidemic estimates the prevalence percentage of HIV in Senegal as at around 0.5% of adults aged between 15 and 49 years, compared to the prevalence percentage in adults in the UK of around 0.25%. You should exercise normal precautions to avoid exposure to HIV/AIDS.

Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.

If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.