Posted in Athletic Energy

Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Port-au-Prince (Haiti), Hurricane Irma Update

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the approach of Hurricane Irma and recommends U.S. citizens avoid all non-essential travel to Haiti. The National Hurricane Center (http://www.nhc.noaa.gov) reports that Hurricane Irma is a strong, dangero…

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Posted in Athletic Energy

Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Port-au-Prince (Haiti), Hurricane Irma Update

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the approach of Hurricane Irma and recommends U.S. citizens avoid all non-essential travel to Haiti. The National Hurricane Center (http://www.nhc.noaa.gov) reports that Hurricane Irma is a strong, dangero…

Read More Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Port-au-Prince (Haiti), Hurricane Irma Update
Posted in Athletic Energy

Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Port-au-Prince (Haiti), Hurricane Irma Update

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the approach of Hurricane Irma and recommends U.S. citizens avoid all non-essential travel to Haiti. The National Hurricane Center (http://www.nhc.noaa.gov) reports that Hurricane Irma is a strong, dangero…

Read More Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Port-au-Prince (Haiti), Hurricane Irma Update
Posted in Athletic Energy

Security Message for U.S. Citizens: La Paz (Bolivia), Demonstration in La Paz August 28, 2017

The U.S. Embassy in La Paz informs U.S. citizens that two demonstrations are expected to take place on August 28, 2017. According to the local media, approximately 150 to 200 street vendors are expected to block the Max Paredes commercial area to prote…

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Posted in Athletic Energy

El Salvador Asks US Government for TPS Extension

WASHINGTON � El Salvador’s government has asked the Trump administration to extend Temporary Protected Status to nearly 200,000 of its nationals living in the United States, the country’s foreign minister announced Friday.

In a one-on-one interview with VOA’s Latin America service, Salvadoran Foreign Minister Hugo Martinez said tropical storms within the past five years, followed by drought conditions more recently, make the return of those citizens untenable.

“We’ve told the U.S. also that, of course they had their reasons initially for granting TPS in 2001 � the instability following the earthquakes in January and February of 2001 � and while we have overcome some of that instability, unfortunately we’ve suffered other catastrophes,” Martinez said.

The U.S. originally granted TPS to Salvadorans in the U.S. in March 2001 following a series of earthquakes. The current designation will expire March 9, 2018.

In making the case to American officials while visiting Washington, Martinez said he also emphasized what Salvadorans are contributing to the U.S. economy.

“Around 90 percent of the [Salvadoran] TPS population is working � and working more than 40 hours [a week], sometimes back-to-back shifts. … They work in key areas for economic development in the U.S., like construction, the restaurant industry, landscaping, hospitality, but also health care and home care, especially for children.”

El Salvador also relies heavily on remittances from workers in the U.S. � recent data indicates 17 percent of the country’s GDP depends on the money sent back to the Central American country � totaling $4.58 billion in 2016.

Each country covered by the program � designed, as the name states, to be a temporary measure during a crises, usually a natural disaster, epidemic or violent conflict � undergoes periodic review to determine if those citizens residing in the U.S. will still qualify for the status and work authorization.

There are 10 countries whose citizens may qualify for TPS currently.

During President Barack Obama’s second term, for example, the Department of Homeland Security officials declined to renew TPS for Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, assessing that the “widespread transmission of Ebola virus in the three countries that led to the designations has ended.”

After May 2017, citizens from those countries who had not adjusted their immigration status were no longer protected from deportation.

Under the Trump administration, TPS status for Haitians is in jeopardy, with top officials announcing in May a shorter-than-average, six-month extension until January 22, 2018, and has told Haitians living in the U.S. under TPS to “prepare for their return to Haiti in the event Haiti’s designation is not extended again.”

In the U.S., about 10 percent of the estimated 2 million people of Salvadoran origin are protected by TPS.

El Salvador has long struggled to contain a staggering homicide rate and transnational gang activity that stretches from Central America to the United States � a frequent talking point for the Trump administration officials, which has regularly � and erroneously � linked immigrants to crime.

Asked whether there has been increased cooperation between El Salvador and the U.S. on security issues under Trump, Martinez said there has been, although he is cautious to point out those efforts are a long time in the making.

“In reality, yes, there’s been an increase, but it’s a natural process that we’ve been developing with various U.S. [government] agencies,” Martinez said. “What I can say is that, with regard to security issues, El Salvador is one of the United States’ leading partners in the hemisphere.”

Source: Voice of America

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Posted in Athletic Energy

Security Message for U.S. Citizens: Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso), Security Awareness Recommendations in Ouagadougou

The U.S. Embassy advises U.S. citizens to take proactive steps to enhance their personal security. In light of terrorist attacks at downtown public venues such as hotels and cafes in Ouagadougou over the past two years, we urge all U.S. citizens to be vigilant and review our existing Travel Warning dated June 7, 2017, and the Worldwide Caution.

Terrorist groups including JNIM, ISIS, and those inspired by such organizations, are intent on attacking U.S. citizens and Westerners around the world. Extremists may use conventional or non-conventional weapons to strike U.S. interests, as well as less sophisticated methods of attack to target crowds, including the use of edged weapons, pistols, and vehicles.

Extremists are increasingly assaulting soft targets, such as:

High-profile public events (sporting contests, political rallies, demonstrations, Holiday events, celebratory gatherings)

Hotels, clubs, and restaurants

Places of worship

Schools

Parks

Shopping malls and markets

Popular tourist locations

Public transportation systems

Airports

The following recommendations may help you avoid becoming a target of opportunity. These precautions may provide some degree of protection, and can serve as practical deterrents to would-be terrorists:

Public Venues:

When possible, avoid or minimize time spent in the soft targets listed above. When in such locations, be alert for suspicious or unusual activity.

Recognize that Western-branded venues or Western-like facilities may be attractive targets for terrorists.

Report suspicious activities and individuals (e.g., loiterers or potential surveillants) to the local police.

Formulate a plan of action of how to respond if a terrorist attack or security incident takes place.

Remember the run, hide, fight rule during a terrorist attack or similar incident: whenever possible, immediately depart the area; if retreat is not an option, conceal yourself from would-be assailants; as a last resort, and only if necessary, yell and fight off an attacker.

Consider these points while choosing the safest seat:

Choose a seat which has the best line of sight to entrances and exits (especially entrances) without having to turn your head much while seated.

Do not be the closest seat to the entrance � which is an immediate point of focus.

Being tucked into a booth will be a hindrance, so better to choose a table.

Avoid choosing a seat out in the middle. Sit closer to a wall, facing out � although not directly up against the wall which could hinder movement and options.

It is very important to be seated in a position where you can get to your feet quickly and start moving.

Choose a seat that enables you to see as many people as possible.

If possible, choose a seat that allows you to be as far away from the main entrance but closer to a secondary exit.

Your ability to recognize and perceive potential threats while going about routine activities will make the difference. Trust your gut instinct and always HAVE A PLAN.

Source: Overseas Security Advisory Council

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Posted in Athletic Energy

Travel Warning: Bangladesh

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens of continuing threats from terrorist groups in Bangladesh and to consider the risks of travel to and throughout the country. The Department is updating this travel warning to reflect the change in the U.S. Em…

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Posted in Athletic Energy

Security Message for U.S. Citizens: Madrid (Spain), Planned Demonstrations from August 18-25

DEMONSTRATIONS PLANNED FOR AUGUST 18-25, 2017

Planned and spontaneous demonstrations take place in Spain, especially in Madrid and Barcelona, in response to economic or other events. If you encounter a large public gathering or demonstration, the U.S. Embassy suggests that you avoid the area. Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence. You should avoid areas of demonstrations, and exercise caution if in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations.

The Government Delegation in Madrid has authorized the following demonstrations:

08/18/17

19:00 � 02:00

Asociacion Kellys Union Madrid

In support of rights for hotel cleaning staff

Plaza Mayor, Madrid

08/20/17

12:00 � 3:00

Federacion Reg. de Asociacion de Vecinos – FRAVM

For a quality public health system

Paseo del Prado, 18-20, Madrid

08/22/17

19:30 � 1:30

Sindicato Solidaridad Obrera

In protest for the disappearance of Santiago Maldonado in Argentina

Puerta del Sol, Madrid

08/24/17

18:30 � 03:30

Lidia Sanchez Canelada

To bear witness to the Gospel of Christ

Puerta del Sol, Madrid

08/25/17

19:30 � 1:00

Foro Madrid contra la Violencia a las Mujeres

To claim effective measures against gender violence

Puerta del Sol, Madrid

08/25/17

21:00 � 03:00

Lidia Sanchez Canelada

To bear witness to the Gospel of Christ

Puerta del Sol, Madrid

Source: Overseas Security Advisory Council

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