The US Embassy in Dublin has issued a security alert urging American citizens to exercise caution and take necessary safety measures as the Irish capital experiences a rise in violent crimes. The embassy’s website published the alert on Monday, advising visitors to be aware of their surroundings, especially when walking alone at night, and to research locations before traveling to them.
To ensure their safety, Americans have been asked to avoid displaying expensive jewelry or watches and to refrain from carrying large amounts of cash. The embassy also advised against placing passports, cash, cell phones, or other valuables in easily accessible pockets or on tables in public places. Citizens were encouraged to maintain a low profile, avoid excessive phone use, limit earbud/headphone usage in public, and be mindful of alcohol consumption. The alert specifically highlighted the risk of pickpocketing, mugging, and snatch-and-grab thefts that target mobile phones and other valuable items.
The security alert follows a recent incident in which a US tourist, Stephen Termini, was violently assaulted in the center of Dublin, resulting in serious injuries. A 14-year-old boy has been charged with the assault. In response to the spike in violent attacks in the country, Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar announced that he would be meeting with Police Commissioner Drew Harris to discuss the issue and explore means to recruit more officers.
Varadkar had previously set a target of recruiting an additional 1,000 police officers by the end of the year. However, he acknowledged on Monday that only around 90 officers are likely to be recruited this week, falling far short of the target. Despite this, Varadkar emphasized that the government remains committed to reaching the goal and will explore ways to improve recruitment during his meeting with the Police Commissioner. The prime minister also stressed the importance of addressing underlying issues such as addiction and poverty as part of efforts to combat crime, stating, “We need to be willing to tackle the causes of crime as well as tackling crime itself.”
The security alert serves as a reminder of the need for increased vigilance among Americans visiting Dublin and the importance of taking necessary precautions to ensure their safety. By following the recommended safety measures and keeping a low profile, visitors can minimize their risk and enjoy their time in the city while authorities work to address the surge in violent crimes.