The US Embassy in Israel issued a security alert urging American citizens to exercise caution and avoid travelling to areas affected by rocket fire on Monday.
The warning came ahead of the anniversary of the Embassy opening in Jerusalem and coincided with ‘Eurovision’ celebrations taking place throughout the week.
And Israel’s military was on high alert on the Gaza border in advance of Nakba Day on Wednesday.
“Terrorist groups may choose the anniversary, which coincides with the Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv and Nakba Day, to conduct violent protests or an attack,” said a statement on the official Embassy website.
Europeans arrived in Israel for Eurovision to scorching temperatures, which was expected to ease midweek.
Israel officially began events amid tight security with around 20,000 police, Magen David Adom and stewards on call.
The Iron Dome defense system was deployed in the border area and centre of the country.
“Security incidents can occur well beyond Gaza, and at any time, as demonstrated by May rocket attacks in southern Israel, including cities of Ashdod, Ashkelon and Be’er Sheva, and March attacks in central Israel,” the US Embassy explained. “As security incidents, including rocket fire, often take place without warning, US citizens are strongly encouraged to remain vigilant and take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness.
“In the event of mortar and/or rocket fire, a Red Alert siren may be activated. Treat all such alerts as real; follow the instructions from local authorities and seek shelter immediately.
“US government personnel and their family members may be restricted from traveling to areas affected by rocket activity, sirens, and/or the opening of bomb shelters.”
The Eurovision Village at Charles Clore Park in Tel Aviv opened Sunday as hundreds of
journalists and TV cameras arrived Expo Tel Aviv along with an expected 300,000 tourists arriving in the city.
Following two semi-final competitions the final will be broadcast live to some 200 million viewers.
By Natalie Ash