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Traveling to China for 15th World Championships in Athletics

photo of Bejing, China

The 15th World Championships in Athletics are being held from August 22 to 30, 2015, in Beijing, China. The event will be the largest sporting event to take place at the Beijing National Stadium ("Bird's Nest") since the 2008 Summer Olympics. Approximately 2000 athletes from more than 200 nations are expected to compete in the Chinese capital later this month. There will be increased security during this period. Transport links to the stadium will be busier than normal and there will be road closures around the stadium.

The tropical cyclone (typhoon) season in China normally runs from May to November, affecting the southern and eastern coastal regions of China. You should monitor the progress of approaching storms and follow the advice of the local authorities, including any evacuation orders.

There is a general threat from terrorism, but the risk of attacks is higher in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous region.

A number of people were injured in a knife attack at Guangzhou railway station on 6 March 2015. There were 3 significant terrorist attacks in 2014, 2 of which took place in Xinjiang. This marks an increase in the scale and frequency of violent attacks in China, and the Chinese government has blamed extremist Uyghur groups.

Although foreigners have not been specifically targeted, attacks could occur in places visited by foreigners. You should be particularly vigilant in Xinjiang. Outside of Xinjiang you should be vigilant when transiting public transport hubs, which have been the subject of recent attacks.

Take particular care if you’re travelling in Tibet. Don’t attempt to travel to Tibet without the appropriate permits. Tibetan Autonomous Region (or Tibetan Autonomous Prefectures in neighboring Provinces) can be closed to foreigners without notice.

China is prone to earthquakes. An earthquake of magnitude 6.8 struck parts of Xinjiang on 12 February 2014. Please check with local authorities before travelling to this area.

Cases of Avian Influenza (Bird Flu) have been reported in eastern and southern China.

Territorial disputes between China and neighbouring countries have caused high regional tension. There have been a number of anti-Japanese demonstrations in several cities across China.

Foreign nationals over the age of 16 must carry their passport at all times.

You must register your place of residence with the local Public Security Bureau within 24 hours of arrival.

Police have the power to detain you or prevent you from leaving China if you are suspected of a crime; have outstanding court action against you, or are involved in any kind of business dispute. This is called a travel ban. There are severe penalties in China for drugs-related offences including the death penalty.

China doesn’t recognize dual nationality. If you hold Chinese nationality, the Chinese authorities may regard you as a Chinese national.

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