Statement fom TravelSafe on the Political Demonstrations in Bahrain

Published by February 17, 2011

Travel insurance carriers use position statements to address how current events can be covered.  In addition to identifying what coverage is available, these statements can also be used to establish the date an event is considered foreseeable.  This is important because anything that could be reasonably expected to interfere with the trip at the time a policy is purchased will not be covered.  This is most common with hurricanes, once a storm is named, a new policy will not cover anything related to that storm.  The following is a statement from TravelSafe on the civil unrest in Bahrain.

This is an update as of 4:00 PM on Wednesday, February 16, 2011, regarding the current security situation in Bahrain. This information is from On Call International the 24 Hour Assistance Company that provides assistance and concierge to all TravelSafe insureds.

On Call is identifying customer needs and organizing evacuation plans. If you have students, passengers, employees or other interested parties who need transportation out of Bahrain, please let us know as soon as possible.

Continuing Political Demonstrations in Bahrain

Political protests in Bahrain continued today, with large groups of civilians demanding the overthrow of the ruling family and the conversion of Bahrain to a constitutional monarchy in which the king would reign, but not rule. Thousands of protestors have spoken out and gathered stronger after the death of two fellow demonstrators during what was deemed a “peaceful protest” on Tuesday. The King of Bahrain vowed that the government would investigate the killings of the two protesters, and today the Interior Ministry announced that those involved in the deaths had been detained in an apparent attempt to placate angry Bahrainis.

Approximately 3,000 demonstrators have camped out at the foot of central Manama’s Pearl Roundabout, implying that they will not cease until their governmental demands are met and that they plan to retain their hold on the area as the Egyptians did in Cairo’s Tahrir Square just weeks ago. At this time, the atmosphere in this heavily demonstrated area is described as being peaceful and relaxed. Reports indicate that the majority of the activists are simply mocking their government and calling for political reforms while security forces monitor the activities and give demonstrators space to vent their anger.

It is likely that protesters will remain camped out in the area overnight on Wednesday, and further demonstrations calling for improved economic conditions and political freedoms are expected to take place tomorrow.  Larger rallies are likely to break out after Friday prayers on February 18 and could spread beyond Pearl Roundabout to government buildings and ministries.  At this time, the U.S. State Department has not implemented a travel warning or advisory for U.S. citizens traveling to Bahrain, but has stated that they are “very concerned” by recent violence in protests and urges all sides to exercise restraint. It is advised that all bystanders currently located in Bahrain should avoid areas of planned demonstrations, but if caught unexpectedly near a demonstration, travelers should obey military and/or police officials and vacate the premises immediately. It is also advised that all U.S. citizens carry proper identification and a cell phone operational in Bahrain at all times.

You may not  be currently signed up for political evacuation services with On Call International; however, On Call is interested in the safety and well being of your students, employees or other interested parties. We are willing to offer our assistance services should you have people in need. Please contact our Global Response Center at 800-407-7307 or via email at mail@oncallinternational.com to notify us of any student, employee, etc. who needs assistance.