ABU DHABI Ñ The United States has warned of an Islamic attack on
Westerners in the United Arab Emirates.
Western diplomatic sources said U.S. intelligence has been alerted of an
Al Qaida-inspired attack in the UAE port city of Dubai. The sources said the
alert warned of an attack similar to the Al Qaida bombing of a Bali,
Indonesia nightclub in October 2002 in which about 200 people were killed.
Dubai is a leading hub as well as a tourist spot for Westerners. Dubai
and Manama are the only cities in the Persian Gulf region with a brisk
Over the weekend, the U.S. embassy in Abu Dhabi warned Americans against
visiting nightclubs in Dubai, Middle East Newsline reported. The embassy said the nightclubs could serve as
soft targets by Islamic insurgents.
"The U.S. Mission to the United Arab Emirates has received indications
of a possible terrorist attack against nightclubs in Dubai," the U.S.
embassy said in a warden message. "Americans in Dubai are urged to avoid
About 16,000 Americans are reported to be living in the emirates. Most
of them live in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.
On Sunday, the State Department ordered non-essential U.S. diplomats and
the families of all embassy personnel to leave Israel, Syria and Kuwait. The
department warned of the prospect of an Iraqi nonconventional weapons
attacks in those countries.
"The decision to move to ordered departure status is a result of an
overall assessment of the security situation in the region due to the threat
of military action in Iraq," the department said. "Private American citizens
currently in [Israel, the Palestinian Authority, Kuwait and Syria] are
strongly urged to depart immediately."