Department of Foreign Affairs updates travel advice for Bahrain and Saudi Arabia

It says there is an "increased risk of security incidents" due to recent events

Department of Foreign Affairs updates travel advice for Bahrain and Saudi Arabia

The Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin City centre | Image:

The Department of Foreign Affairs has updated its security advice for people travelling to Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, advising caution.

It says there is an increased risk of security incidents and disturbances following the execution of 47 people by Saudi authorities on January 2nd.

"There is a general threat from terrorism and there is a need to be particularly vigilant having regard to recent terrorist incidents in and around mosques in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia", it says.

"Demonstrations and protests occur regularly in Bahrain and should be avoided. The risk of outbreaks of violence is ongoing and the security situation remains uncertain", it adds.

The department is also encouraging those planning to visit or stay in the region to register their details with them.

It comes after Kuwait became the latest nation to take action against Iran.

The Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) says its ambassador in Tehran has been summoned, in protest at attacks on Saudi Arabia's diplomatic missions there.

They relate to the execution of Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr.

"Aggressive policies"

Yesterday, Saudi foreign minister Adel al-Jubeir said all commercial ties between the countries would also be cut.

Sunni-led Saudi Arabia claims the killing was part of a war on terrorism - but it has sparked protests among Shia Muslims throughout the region.

In response to attacks on its diplomatic missions, Saudi ordered all Iranian diplomats to leave the country within 48 hours.

The foreign minister blamed "Iran's aggressive policies" over many years.

Sunni allies Bahrain, Sudan and the United Arab Emirates have also severed or reduced diplomatic ties with Iran.

Their intervention represents another escalation in tension between the two branches of Islam.

"Saudi Arabia, which thrives on tensions, has used this incident as an excuse to fuel the tensions," foreign ministry spokesman Hossein Jaberi Ansari said in televised remarks.

No Saudi diplomats were in the embassy at the time and all have now been called home. Iranian officials condemned the attack, as well as Sheikh al-Nimr's execution by Saudi Arabia.

The 56-year-old was a driving force behind anti-government protests in Saudi during the Arab Spring of 2011.

He was put to death along with 46 other prisoners on Saturday.