Philippines: Threat of Militancy Increasing amid Islamic State Inspiration

The threat from militancy is increasing in the Philippines as Islamic State (IS) encourages cohesion among, and inspires attacks by, regional militant groups. Though fears that IS fighters will flock to the southern Philippines, amid a major counteroffensive against the group in the Middle East, are likely overstated, a capable and well-financed preexisting network of local groups means that significant outside support is not required to intensify militant operations.

Philippines: High-profile Campaign against Illegal Drugs Currently Presents Low Threat to Personnel or Business Operations

President Rodrigo Duterte's high-profile campaign against the illegal drug trade is prompting growing concern about the security situation in the Philippines. Dozens of extrajudicial killings have occurred daily since Duterte took office June 30, leaving an estimated 4,000 people dead as of early November. As the campaign has progressed, Duterte has moved swiftly to silence critics, and he is seemingly allowing security personnel to operate with increasing impunity. Under current conditions, the primary concerns for travelers and multinational businesses are pre-existing criminal threats, and those unaffiliated with the drug trade or drug use are unlikely to be targeted. 

Philippines: President Duterte's Strident Rhetoric Unlikely to Impact US Business Interests

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte's persistent anti-US rhetoric is generating increasing uncertainty in bilateral relations with its primary security ally and major business partner. The president's controversial policy statements - including pledges to end military exercises, demands for US special forces to withdraw from Mindanao, and an economic separation from the US - would, if enacted, mark a significant deterioration in relations between Manila and Washington, DC. 

Pre-Travel Health Planning Can Help You Avoid Common Issues

Pre-travel health planning is paramount. Travelers can face a variety of health-related threats while traveling abroad from infectious diseases and injury to exacerbating pre-existing medical conditions. Fortunately, many of these issues can be mitigated and even prevented prior to departure. Let's take a look at some basic and proactive pre-travel health measures you should consider before any international trip.