US Embassy Jakarta Issues Warden Message on Bali Warning

indonesia bali legong dancersImage by FriskoDude via Flickr

On December 31, 2009,
the US Embassy in Jakarta issued the following Warden Message on Bali. Reprinted
in part below:

The Bali Tourism Board widely distributed this message: “The
Governor of Bali Mr. Mangku Pastika wishes to share a message with all of us:
‘There is an indication of an attack to Bali tonight,’ but please don’t panic,
but put your security system to full alert.”  This message is shared
verbatim for your information. The safety and security recommendations in our
Consular Information Sheet, quoted below, remain valid.
“Indonesian police and security forces take active measures
against both ongoing threats posed by terrorist cells, including Jemaah
Islamiyah
(JI), a U.S. government-designated terrorist organization that
carried out several bombings at various times from 2002 to 2009 and outbreaks
of violence elsewhere.  While Indonesia’s counterterrorism efforts have
been ongoing and partly successful, violent elements have demonstrated a
willingness and ability to carry out deadly attacks with little or no warning. 
Most recently, in November 2009, unknown assailants shot at foreigners in Banda
Aceh, North Sumatra, an area that was devastated by the 2004 tsunami and the
scene of a long-running separatist conflict that ended in 2005.  The
gunfire wounded a European development worker.  A house occupied by U.S.
citizen teachers was targeted and hit by gunfire, but there were no U.S.
citizen casualties.  In July 2009, attacks by armed assailants in Papua
resulted in several deaths, including security personnel and one Australian
national.  Also in July, suspected JI elements bombed two Western hotels
in Jakarta, killing nine Indonesians and foreigners and injuring over 50,
including six U.S. citizens.  U.S. citizens in Indonesia must be
physically and mentally prepared to cope with future attacks even as they go
about their normal daily routines.
Extremists may target both official and private interests,
including hotels, clubs and shopping centers.  While it may be difficult
to modify one’s behavior to counter risks in a country where places in which
U.S. citizens and other Westerners must congregate to live and work are well
known and few in number, it is also extremely necessary.  In their work
and daily living activities, and while traveling, U.S. citizens should be vigilant
and prudent at all times.  We urge U.S. citizens to monitor local news
reports, vary their routes and times, and maintain a low profile.  U.S.
citizens must consider the security and safety preparedness of hotels,
residences, restaurants, and entertainment or recreation venues that they
frequent.”

Americans living and traveling in Indonesia are urged to register and update
their contact information with the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta, U.S. Consulate
General in Surabaya, U.S. Consulate Medan or U.S. Consular Agency in
Bali.  Registration facilitates the U.S. Mission’s contact with Americans
in emergency situations, and may be done on line and in advance of
travel.  Information on registering can be found at the U.S. Department of
State’s Consular Affairs website at http://travelregistration.state.gov
and at the Embassy’s website at http://jakarta.usembassy.gov.  All Travel Warnings,
Travel Alerts, Worldwide Cautions, and recent warden messages are posted on the
Embassy website.
Read the whole thing here.
Note that Warden
Messages are not easily visible on the main page of the US Embassy’s website.  When checking for updates, click on American Citizen Services
,
and select Notices
to Americans
.