Britain warns of UAE terror attack
Britain today raised its terror warning for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to its highest level, raising the spectre of increased danger for an expatriate community which has doubled over the last two years.
A statement by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website said today that terrorists were "planning to carry out attacks" in the country, where around 120,000 Brits live.
Latest figures show the UAE has the world's fastest-expanding number of British expats, up from 60,000 in 2006.
The government fears that this grouping could be increasingly exposed to the possibility of a terrorist attack, as international tension increases.
"There is a high threat from terrorism. We believe terrorists may be planning to carry out attacks in the UAE," the FCO statement said.
The FCO has four levels of terror threat, including “high”, “general”, “underlying” and “low”. A “high” threat, now applicable to the UAE, comes into force when there is a “high level of known terrorist activity”.
The FCO statement continues: “Attacks could be indiscriminate and could happen at any time, including in places frequented by expatriates and foreign travellers such as residential compounds, military, oil, transport and aviation interests. You should maintain a high level of security awareness, particularly in public places.”
A spokesman said he could not go into specific detail as to what information may have triggered the rise in threat level. He said travel advice was "under constant review".
As well as the 120,000 expat population, one million Brits travel to the UAE each year.
Concerns have been voiced that al-Qaeda may have supporters or operatives in the country and a tradition of smuggling and money-laundering has raised fears about terrorist funding.
The seven states which make up the Middle Eastern federation include the capital Abu Dhabi and Dubai, an increasingly popular tourist destination, known for its brand-name shopping and five star hotels.
Información de la actividad terrorista en esta zona geográfica que incluye los países del Golfo y vecinos, Israel y Mar Rojo.
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Reino Unido amenaza de la posibilidad de atentados terroristas a sus ciudadanos en Emiratos Árabes Unidos.