Changes Made to Imminent Danger Pay Areas

NGAUS Washington Report

(Jan. 7, 2014) The Defense Department announced Friday changes in imminent danger pay that will go into effect June 1, Col. Steven Warren, a Pentagon spokesman, told reporters.

According to a DoD news release announcing the recertification, the combatant commands conducted in-depth threat assessments for countries within their areas of responsibility.  Following the review, it was determined that the imminent threat of physical harm to U.S. military personnel due to civil insurrection, civil war, terrorism or wartime conditions is significantly reduced in many countries, resulting in the discontinuation of imminent danger pay in those areas.

The following areas would no longer be designated as imminent danger areas:

  • The nine land areas of East Timor, Haiti, Liberia, Oman, Rwanda, Tajikistan, United Arab Emirates, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan;
  • The six land areas and air space above Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Serbia and Montenegro;
  • The four water areas of the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Aden, Gulf of Oman, and the Red Sea; and  
  • The water area and air space above the Persian Gulf.

“Of specific note,” Warren said, “imminent danger pay will remain in effect for the following: Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Jordan, Pakistan, Syria, Yemen and Egypt.”

Although 2013 statistics are not available, Warren noted 194,189 personnel received imminent danger pay in 2012.

“Approximately 50,000 less will be receiving imminent danger pay,” he said. “In [2012], we spent approximately $500 million on imminent danger pay. This will result in a reduction of approximately $100 million.”

The benefit provides troops in imminent danger areas about $7.50 per day up to the maximum monthly rate of $225, Warren said.