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Chan'ad Bahraini

(Scomberomorous maculatus Bahrainius)

Note: This page has moved to a new address. Please click on the following URL to get there: http://chanad.weblogs.us/index.php?s=US urges citizens to consider leaving Bahrain. Sorry for the trouble.

US urges citizens to consider leaving Bahrain

Friday, July 02, 2004
Well, here is the travel advisory issued by the US State Department which was posted on the website of the US Embassy to Bahrain yesterday:
This Travel Warning is being issued to alert U.S. citizens to increased security concerns in Bahrain. U.S. citizens in Bahrain should evaluate their own security situation and should consider departing.

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens to defer travel to Bahrain. American citizens currently in Bahrain are urged to consider departing.

The Department has received information that extremists are planning attacks against U.S. and other Western interests in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Credible information indicates that extremists remain at large and are planning attacks in Bahrain. In neighboring Saudi Arabia, for example, terrorists have targeted residential housing compounds using vehicle bombs, resulting in numerous deaths and injuries, including to American citizens.

U.S. citizens are reminded of the potential for further terrorist actions against U.S. citizens abroad, including the Persian Gulf region. U.S. citizens who travel to, or remain in, Bahrain despite this Travel Warning should register at the U.S. Embassy in Manama and enroll in the warden system (emergency alert network) to obtain updated information on travel and security in Bahrain.
Chan'ad's sources also tell him that on Tuesday a large number of families of 5th Fleet Navy servicemen were planning on flying to the US (via Germany) on their planned summer vacations. Apparently, their flight to Germany was cancelled at the last moment because, they were told, they may soon get orders to leave Bahrain permanently.

Other sources tell Chan'ad that the coast guard is also on high alert. Apparently, leisure boats which normally roam around the Marina Club and the Juffair area (not far from the 5th Fleet Navy Base) have been approached by the Coast Guard to make sure that nothing fishy is going on (hmmm... bad choice of words maybe).

Otherwise, things are quite normal on the island. Although the US has suggested that Bahrain might be the subject of a terrorist attack no one really seems to be aware of it, or cares all too much (apart from the Americans, I imagine). I just hope that everything remains okay. After the tragedy in al Khobar, the terrorists would need only to drive a further 30 minutes across the Causeway to carry out their mischief in Bahrain. Given that the US Navy 5th Fleet is located in Bahrain, and that huge numbers of Westerners from Saudi are relocating on the island, it does seem like an attractive target. But somehow, I feel safer here than in most parts of the world.

Here are some reports about the issue from other news sources:
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