Travel Alert – Bahrain…

Drum Cussac has issued this latest warning for U.S. Military Personnel traveling in the country of Bahrain.  This information is available to GeoBlue plan members from the GeoBlue website daily…

US Military Personnel Warned of Heightened Unrest Risk ahead of Elections on 22 November

Category: Health and Medical

Severity: 3 (Moderate)

Source: Drum Cussac

11/21/2014 (Bahrain) – US officials are warning military personnel stationed in Bahrain about increased protest activity ahead of national elections on Saturday, 22 November. In an anti-terrorism force protection notice posted by the US Naval Force Central Command, officials warned military personnel to be careful about suspicious packages, tyre fires and clashes with police during the pre-election and election days. The message also urged US personnel to stay away from polling station areas, which include several popular venues, such as shopping centres, that Americans typically visit.

Bahrain’s security officials are expected to increase security around the country during the elections. The Bahraini Interior Ministry said it has prepared for various scenarios and will monitor groups and individuals who may try to disrupt the vote. The country’s main opposition groups are boycotting the elections, citing a lack of political reform and an unfair electoral process. Groups like al-Wefaq hope that a low turnout in some areas will erode government credibility. Weeks leading up to the election have seen a spate of arson attacks targeting parliamentary candidates, tyre fires blocking roads, and an increase in arrests of activists. The “February 14 Youth Coalition”, which has claimed responsibility for bombings and violent attacks against security forces, has vowed to disrupt the election.

This election will unlikely solve the instability and political unrest that is undermining security. Personnel are advised to ensure that risk mitigation measures minimise any potential exposure and adverse effects to personnel safety, travel itinerary and operational continuity. Protests often include blockages of major highways with burning debris and the establishment of unofficial checkpoints. Exercise caution at all times, especially when in the immediate vicinity of polling centres, party offices and election-related events. Do not to handle or touch unfamiliar objects, but instead call 999 immediately.

Copyright © 2014 Drum Cussac

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