US Embassy in Eswatini warning: Stay Home!

The situation in the Kingdom of Eswatini remains tense but seems to be under government control, with insurgents assumed to operate in the country.

  1. Eswatini Airlink and its operating partner Airlink, the South African-based domestic and regional airline, has canceled flights today between Johannesburg and Sikhuphe’s King Mswati III International Airport in Eswatini, due to civil unrest in the Kingdom of Eswatini.
  2. A government official told eTurboNews: “We believe there are insurgents now in the country.”
  3. According to eTN sources, there are no newspaper editions today due to the unrest that erupted in the Capital city of Mbabane yesterday. National radio stations keep replaying yesterday’s news, and the internet was interrupted last night.

The situation in Eswatini remains tense after a night with a curfew in place.

eTurboNews article on Eswatini caught between Taiwan and China summarized background on this ongoing development. It may give a clue that this situation may be way more than just angry citizens demanding change.

According to information from Eswatini, protesters shut down the Times of Eswatini newspaper for supporting the king and the government. Eswatini Beverages, a subsidiary of SABMiller ABinBev where King Mswati owns shares was burnt down by protestors.

“In the interest of the safety and security of our customers and staff, and in consultation with our partner Airlink, we have decided to temporarily suspend our operations on the route between Johannesburg and Sikhuphe (Eswatini). We will continue to assess the situation and we will restore normal services as soon as it is safe to do so,” said Eswatini Airlink General Manager, Joseph Dlamini. 

Flights cancelled (30 June 2021) are:

  • 4Z 080 Johannesburg – Sikhuphe 
  • 4Z 086 Johannesburg – Sikhuphe 
  • 4Z 081 Sikhuphe – Johannesburg
  • 4Z 087 Sikhuphe – Johannesburg

The country’s authorities ordered a strict curfew last night and shut down the internet. Communications with the outside world was limited. It’s seems to back now. A source told eTurboNews: “The reports you see here aren’t the full picture.”

According to unconfirmed reports by South Africa’s independent news wire IOL a bus crew became suspicious and opened a bucket with Nyii fruit (wild fruit from the red Ivorywood tree), finding explosives hidden under it. The fruits were put on the bus by a 13 year old girl.

The U.S. Embassy is advising all U.S. citizens to be aware of civil unrest in the Kingdom. A situation is unfolding in Eswatini, including the burning and looting of stores, cars and businesses.  Protests have been building in Mbabane throughout the morning and shops are closing. The U.S. Embassy is strongly urging all citizens, countrywide, to stock up on food and water and then stay home.  Embassy staff has been directed to remain home.  U.S. citizens are urged to avoid major roads as protestors are blocking avenues with burning material.  The U.S. Embassy will remain closed through Wednesday, June 30.  U.S. citizens needing emergency services should call the Consular Section.

The US Embassy recommends for US citizen in Eswatini to take the following actions:

  • If safe, stock up on groceries and water and then stay home.
  • Monitor local media for updates.
  • Avoid driving