Australian embassy staff are banned from travelling to three cities in the Philippines because of a high threat of terrorist attack and serious crime.
AAP reports the ban was revealed on an updated website warning by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, which reads:
"For security reasons, as of 1 July 2013, all travel by embassy staff to Davao City, Cotabato City and Zamboanga City has been cancelled until further notice."
The website said a high degree of caution is advised because of the high threat of terrorist attack and the high level of serious crime.
It urged people not to travel to central and western Mindanao, including the Zamboanga peninsula and Sulu archipelago, due to a very high threat of terrorist attack, kidnapping, violent crime and clashes between armed groups.