New Delhi, March 17 (IANS) Bahrain has assured the safety of all Indians living in the Gulf state which has witnessed violent clashes between anti-government protesters and security forces.
Bahraini Prime Minister Sheikh Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa conveyed the assurance when the Indian ambassador called on him Thursday.
“He was assured by the prime minister that the Bahraini authorities will do everything in their power to ensure the safety and security of Indians living in the country,” said a statement issued by the ministry of external affairs.
For over a month, protesters in Bahrain have been demanding political reforms and greater freedom. Government crackdown on protesters has left at least 12 people dead since Feb 14.
At least three people were killed when police, backed by army tanks and helicopters, violently dispersed protesters in capital Manama’s Lulu Square. Curfew had been also imposed in the city.
With the situation deteriorating in Bahrain, the Indian embassy has again asked all Indians to keep a low profile, stay indoors and avoid all non-essential travel within the country.
“The Indian embassy has also advised the Indian associations that those family members and others whose presence in Bahrain is not necessary should consider leaving the country, if so inclined,” it said. “The government continues to carefully monitor the security situation in Bahrain and will issue suitable travel advisories should it become necessary.”
A 24-hour helpline has been set up in the Indian embassy with these phone numbers – 00973 3982 8767, 00973 17712785. Besides, the external affairs ministry also has a helpline in India, with four phone numbers (+91 11 2301 5300, +91 11 2301 2113, +91 11 2301 4104, +91 112301 8179).