Add to Technorati Favorites expat Abu Dhabi Dispatches: Better Late Than Never

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Better Late Than Never

As a US citizen living and working abroad in an historically unstable part of the world, I duly registered my status with the US Embassy here in Abu Dhabi. It is recommended in case of a political meltdown (unlikely in the UAE) so one can be found in case evacuation is prescribed due to unrest which may put US citizens in harm's way.

One big benefit of being a US citizen abroad is that the government is dead-set serious about getting its own boys and girls out of a bad situation. I can count on that and it is comforting that I can rely on the USN and USAF to have a plan. One of the basic tenets of the US government is to protect its citizens, no matter where they are. Most other nationalities don't have this luxury.

US Embassy, Abu Dhabi


If I have to avail myself of their services in times of turmoil, I will consider every penny of tax I paid as a good investment.

Things are "hot" in this  part of the word lately with uprisings in Libya, Tunisia, Yemen, Oman, Egypt, Bahrain (close) and others. The UAE and Saudi Arabia are quiet and safe for now but who knows when things might spill over.

Which brings me to the point of this post. I just got an email from the US Embassy advising me of the troubles surrounding me even though widespread shit has been happening in the region since January. The warning is here: 
fromAbu Dhabi, ACS
to"Abu Dhabi, ACS"
dateMon, Mar 14, 2011 at 8:47 AM
subjectWarden Message # 6/2011: Stay Alert to Regional Developments
mailed-bystate.gov
hide details Mar 14 (2 days ago)

Warden Message # 6/2011: Stay Alert to Regional Developments

U.S. Mission to the United Arab Emirates
U.S. Embassy Abu Dhabi - U.S. Consulate General Dubai
March 14, 2011


The U.S. Mission to the United Arab Emirates reminds Americans to remain
alert to regional developments. Below are summaries of current guidance
from the U.S. Department of State for many countries in the region. The
most up-to-date guidance and information can be found online at
travel.state.gov <http://travel.state.gov/> .


In the event of an emergency, such as the death or arrest of an American
citizen, the Embassy and Consulate General stand ready to assist 24
hours a day. You may contact the duty officers at +971-2-414-2500.

The U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi is located in the Embassies District, Plot
38, Sector W59-02, Street No. 4, P.O. Box 4009. Telephone:
+971-2-414-2200, fax: +971-2-414-2241, email: abudhabiacs@state.gov
<http://abudhabi.usembassy.gov/mailto;abudhabiacs@state.gov> , on the
web: http://abudhabi.usembassy.gov <http://abudhabi.usembassy.gov/> .
For after-hours emergencies in Abu Dhabi, call +971-2-414-2500 and ask
for the Abu Dhabi Duty Officer.

The U.S. Consulate General in Dubai is located on the 21st floor of the
Dubai World Trade Center, P.O. Box 9343. Telephone: +971-4-311-6000,
fax: +971-4-311-6213, email: dubaiwarden@state.gov, on the web:
http://dubai.usconsulate.gov <http://dubai.usconsulate.gov/
> . For
after-hours emergencies in Dubai or the Northern Emirates, call
+971-2-414-2500 and ask for the Dubai Duty Officer.


Bahrain

The U.S. Department of State urges U.S. citizens to defer non-essential
travel to Bahrain at this time. (Bahrain Travel Alert
<http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/pa/pa_5349.html>  dated
February 18, 2011)

The latest information and guidance from Embassy Manama can be found
online at http://bahrain.usembassy.gov/demonstration.html.

Oman

The U.S. Embassy in Muscat advises U.S. citizens of ongoing
demonstrations, marches, sit-ins and protests throughout the Sultanate
of Oman. (Embassy Muscat Warden Message
<http://oman.usembassy.gov/wrdn_msgspublic-announcement.html>  dated
March 13, 2011)

The latest information and guidance from Embassy Muscat can be found
online at http://oman.usembassy.gov/wrdn_msgs.html.

Yemen

The U.S. Department of State urges U.S. citizens not to travel to Yemen.
U.S. citizens currently in Yemen should consider departing. (Yemen
Travel Warning
<http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/tw/tw_5364.html>  dated March
6, 2011)

The latest information and guidance from Embassy Sanaa can be found
online at http://yemen.usembassy.gov/yemen/citizen_services.html.

Libya

The U.S. Department of State warns U.S. citizens against travel to Libya
and recommends U.S. citizens in Libya depart immediately. (Libya Travel
Warning <http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/tw/tw_5358.html>
dated February 25, 2011)

The U.S. Embassy in Tripoli suspended operations on February 25, 2011.

The latest information and guidance on Libya can be found online at
travel.state.gov
<http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_951.html> .

Egypt

The U.S. Department of State continues to warn U.S. citizens to defer
non-essential travel to Egypt. (Egypt Travel Warning
<http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/tw/tw_5347.html>  dated
February 18, 2011)

The latest information and guidance from Embassy Cairo can be found
online at http://egypt.usembassy.gov/consular/travpubl.html.

Tunisia

The U.S. Department of State continues to advise U.S. citizens currently
in Tunisia to defer non-essential travel to the central, western, and
southern regions of Tunisia. (Tunisia Travel Alert
<http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/pa/pa_5375.html>  dated March
10, 2011)

The latest information and guidance from Embassy Tunis can be found
online at
http://tunisia.usembassy.gov/service/about-us/embassy-notices2/warden-in
formation.html
.



This email is UNCLASSIFIED
 I hate to complain and appreciate the effort but a more timely "heads up" would be welcomed.


 


6 comments:

ynotoman said...

probably more a quibble than anything -
the situation in Oman is hardly an 'uprising' its a number of protests and strikes - today a strike at the port over wages etc and ongoing protests in Sohar, Muscat, Salalah.
Things like that happen almost daily in the UK of USA and yet they are not called 'uprising' .

Ace said...

I only know what I see on the news. I have never heard Oman mentioned in the news until lately.

Hope all is well there and continues to be so.

Neil Roberts said...

...I guess that is a stock photo - I'm sure you wouldn't have taken a picture in the Embassy area would you :-)

Ace said...

Yes it is a stock photo, but when I went there last year to renew a passport, I could have obtained an image of the other side from the parking lot across the street. Not that I would do that though ;)

I am sure they are aware of that, there are hundreds of people there everyday.

I hope they didn't pay the architect too much, know what I mean!

Jonathan said...

My wife and I visited the US Embassy in Abu Dhabi yesterday to get a passport for our newborn, and without thinking, we took a photo in our excitement to see an American flag flying in Abu Dhabi. My wife snapped the photos (4 in all), then very nice men with automatic machine guns took me (not my wife!) into a back office and asked me politely to delete the photos. It was the longest 15 minutes of my life. I found an article today from 2010 where a Syrian man who claimed to be taking photos of the ADNEC building right behind the Embassy was arrested, detained for over a month and is facing a trial for taking pictures of the Embassy. I consider myself fortunate.

Neil Roberts said...

@ Jonathan: yeah you gotta be so careful with this stuff. There was also a guy who to some snaps of the sunset from Khalifa bridge by the port and got yanked to the police station because unwittingly he didn't realise there were military facilities in his view.

Mind you, sometimes it just gets ridiculous, like the guy who got arrested for taking pictures of the F1 track at Yas (because they said that, apparently, there are signs saying no pictures) - no that is just BS!