What led to US issuing unusual global travel alert

The United States issued an unusual global travel alert to its citizen on Friday after the US intelligence agencies intercepted some of the al Qaeda operatives` communication discussing attacks on US missions in the Middle East and North Africa.

Zee Media Bureau

Washington: The United States issued an unusual global travel alert to its citizen on Friday after the US intelligence agencies intercepted some of the al Qaeda operatives` communication discussing attacks on US missions in the Middle East and North Africa.

According to reports, a series of terror attacks are planned by the al Qaeda operatives from Sunday through the end of August.

The warning by the US comes a day after the State Department announced the closure of almost two dozen diplomatic missions in the Middle East and in North Africa.

According to sources, the information about the potential attacks was gathered by informants, interception of emails and cell phone calls.

State Department officials said Thursday they were acting out of an "abundance of caution."

Spokeswoman Marie Harf cited information indicating a threat to U.S. facilities overseas and said some diplomatic facilities may stay closed for more than a day.

Sunday is a workday in the Muslim world. American diplomatic missions in Europe, Latin America and many other places are closed on Sunday.

Royce said Friday he supported the State Department decision to "protect our personnel on the ground."

The State Department issued a major warning last year informing American diplomatic facilities across the Muslim world about potential violence connected to the anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Dozens of American installations were besieged by protests over an anti-Islam video made by an American resident.
In Benghazi, Libya, the US ambassador and three other Americans were killed when militants assaulted a diplomatic post. The administration no longer says that attack was related to the demonstrations.

(With agency inputs)