The government of Canada has issued a travel advisory for citizens travelling to the Bahamas, of the back of a similar step being taken by the Unites States recently, as both nations recognized the risks posed by high crime rates in the Caribbean nation.
The advisory has highlighted multiple regions in the Bahamas, such as Nassau in New Providence and Freeport in Grand Bahama. Travelers going to the Bahamas have been asked by Canadian authorities to be mindful of the high rate of crime in the nation and “exercise a high degree of caution.”
Authorities in the Bahamas have stated that they are taking every possible measure to tackle crime and crack down on criminal elements in the nation. Yet, the United States and Canada recognize the fact that the nation has already witnessed 18 murders this year, so far.
This is an astonishing rate considering the size of the nation and its population, which has raised concerns.
The advisory issued by Canada states the following, “There has been a decrease in violent crime since the beginning of 2018. Crime, however, including violent crime, still occurs, mainly on the islands of Grand Bahama and New Providence.”
The advisory goes on to say, “Armed robberies, burglaries, purse snatchings, theft, fraud and sexual assaults are the most common crimes committed against travellers in Freeport and Nassau.”
This advisory is the second of four levels and is preceded by the first level which asks travelers to “take normal security precautions”.
The third level asks travelers to “avoid non-essential travel”, while level four asks citizens to “avoid all travel”.
Before Canada took this step, the United States issued a similar advisory on Friday, warning tourists to beware of criminal activity in the Bahamas.
The advisory issued by the United States highlighted the over the hill area, South of Shirley Street, where its states that “gang-on-gang violence has resulted in a high homicide rate primarily affecting the local population.”
The United States Embassy in Nassau issued a security alert prior to the announcement of the advisory, which highlighted the 18 cases of homicide that have taken place since 2024 began.
The security alert stated the following, “Murders have occurred at all hours including in broad daylight on the streets. Retaliatory gang violence has been the primary motive in 2024 murders.”