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SRAS NEWS  / EVENTS IN KYRGYZSTAN: SRAS STATEMENT
15.06.2010


SRAS Official Statements
Concerning the Events in Kyrgyzstan

Update: June 15, 2010 

The world is watching the dramatic events unfolding in southern Kyrgyzstan.

SRAS continues, as always, to monitor events there and check regularly with our colleagues based in Kyrgyzstan and with other Central Asian experts based abroad. We can happily report that our teachers, employees, and students, who are all based in the northern city of Bishkek, have not been affected by the recent events.

The reports currently streaming from this Central Asian state have been confined to the southern portion of the country – specifically to the cities of Jalal-Abad and Osh and their surrounding area.

Our colleagues on the ground in Bishkek report that the provisional government is still securely in power there and over the rest of the country. The US Department of State has, likely because of the localized nature of the events, removed Kyrgyzstan from its list of travel warnings. 

SRAS is therefore planning to move forward with programs in Bishkek for the summer term and fall semester.

SRAS considers student safety a top priority. Students will be issued cell phones while in Bishkek so that they may stay in constant contact with us, their school, and their embassy while exploring the city and culture they are visiting and studying. Students are issued insurance and advised to carry their identification, including student identification, at all times in case of emergencies. Students are strongly advised against traveling south of Bishkek while in Kyrgyzstan.

In summary, students, as always, are encouraged to remain curious, active, and vigilant. Bishkek remains an historically, culturally, and linguistically fascinating destination that offers not only a great study abroad destination, but great experience towards building a future in diplomacy or academia. We continue to welcome bright and ambitious students to this unique and strategically important location.

 

UPDATE: April 21, 2010 

SRAS continues to monitor the situation. The below, updated travel warning was issued by The Department of State on April 21, 2010.

 

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the situation in the Kyrgyz Republic in the aftermath of recent political demonstrations and subsequent unrest.  The Department of State has authorized the voluntary departure of all non-emergency U.S. government personnel and eligible family members from the Kyrgyz Republic.  This replaces the Travel Alert for the Kyrgyz Republic dated April 9, 2010, and provides information on potential threats to U.S. citizens in the Kyrgyz Republic.

The Department of State strongly urges U.S. citizens to avoid travel to the Kyrgyz Republic.  In the aftermath of anti-government demonstrations on April 6-8, the situation remains unstable.  We urge U.S. citizens to defer travel to the Kyrgyz Republic until the security situation improves, and alert U.S. citizens traveling or residing in the Kyrgyz Republic of the potential for further instability.  There remains a persistent danger of further demonstrations, unrest, and crime.  Demonstrations could occur without warning, sometimes resulting in injury or death.  We remind U.S. citizens to maintain a high level of vigilance and to take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness.  U.S. citizens remaining in the Kyrgyz Republic are urged to avoid the areas of large gatherings and demonstrations, including peaceful demonstrations.

U.S. citizens who choose to travel to the Kyrgyz Republic despite this Travel Warning are urged to register through the State Department's travel registration website https://travelregistration.state.gov so they can obtain updated information on travel and security.  U.S. citizens without Internet access may register directly with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.  By registering, U.S. citizens make it easier for the Embassy or Consulate to contact them in case of emergency. 

For the latest security information, U.S. citizens traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department's web-site where the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, and Travel Alerts can be found.  Up-to-date information on security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the United States and Canada or, for callers outside the United States and Canada, a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).

The U.S. Embassy in Bishkek is located at 171 Prospect Mira, Bishkek 720016.  Non-emergency e-mail messages about consular matters may be sent to consularbishkek@state.gov.  For inquiries or after-hours emergencies, call (996) (312) 551 241.

 

Original Statement: April 10, 2010 

As most of the world has now heard, the tiny but strategically important country of Kyrgyzstan has again risen against oppression and installed a new government.

SRAS has been carefully and actively monitoring the situation in Kyrgyzstan via our partners and colleagues on the ground, through the US State Department, and via various news sources. Fortunately, no teachers, employees, or students of SRAS have been affected by the current events.

While we will continue to monitor the situation, we are currently planning on moving forward with our programs in Kyrgyzstan for summer, 2010, provided that the situation remains stable and the US State Deptartment does not prolong its travel advisory, currently set to expire on May 9th (see below).

Our colleagues in that Central Asian state assure us that the provisional government has assumed power and is restoring order. We will continue to update all applicants of any changes that may occur to the situation. Students who have particular questions or concerns are invited to contact their SRAS representative.

SRAS considers student safety a top priority. We will expand our student cell phone program to Bishkek beginning in Summer, 2010, so that students may stay in constant contact with us, their school, and their embassy while exploring the city and culture they are visiting and studying. Students are issued insurance and advised to carry their identification, including student identification, at all times in case of emergencies.

In summary, students, as always, are encouraged to remain curious, active, and vigilant. Kyrgyzstan remains an historically, culturally, and linguistically fascinating destination that offer not only a great study abroad destination, but great experience towards building a future in diplomacy or academia. We continue to welcome bright and ambitious students to this unique and strategically important location.

 

US State Department Travel Advisory for Kyrgyzstan
April 09, 2010

The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to evolving security concerns in Kyrgyzstan, and reminds them of the continuing threat of violence following anti-government demonstrations in Talas on April 7, and in many cities, including the capital Bishkek, on April 8.  We urge U.S. citizens to defer travel to Kyrgyzstan until the security situation improves, and alert U.S. citizens traveling or residing in Kyrgyzstan of the potential for further demonstrations.  This Travel Alert expires on May 9, 2010.

U.S. citizens in Kyrgyzstan should be particularly vigilant in light of the ongoing unrest in Bishkek and some other cities.  Large groups continue to move throughout Bishkek and looting and arson continues.  Roads in the city are sometimes blocked by large groups of people, and some roads into and out of the city are reported to be closed.  We remind U.S. citizens to maintain a high level of vigilance and to take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness.  U.S. citizens are urged to avoid the areas of large gatherings and demonstrations, including peaceful demonstrations, if possible.  U.S. citizens are urged to stay indoors, particularly at night, to avoid becoming victims of opportunity.  Some U.S. Embassy personnel and their families have been temporarily relocated to the Manas Transit Center.  U.S. citizens who are unable to find a location they feel is safe to shelter in place may contact the Embassy at 996 (312) 551 241 for further information.

The Department of State encourages U.S. citizens living or traveling abroad to register with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate through the State Department's travel registration website so that they can obtain updated information on travel and security. U.S. citizens without Internet access may register directly with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.  By registering, U.S. citizens make it easier for the Embassy or Consulate to contact them in case of emergency.  For additional information, please refer to "A Safe Trip Abroad."

For the latest security information, U.S. citizens traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department's web site where the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, and Travel Alerts can be found.  Up-to-date information on security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the United States and Canada or, for callers outside the United States and Canada, a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).

The U.S. Embassy in Bishkek is located at 171 Prospect Mira, Bishkek 720016.  Non-emergency e-mail messages about consular matters may be sent to consularbishkek@state.gov.  For inquiries or afterhours emergencies, call (996) (312) 551 241.



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