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Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

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Calgary, Alberta...
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Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

Anyone on the ground in Arusha with any news - it says all businesses are closed and all tourists either re-directed to other towns or confined to their hotels:

eturbonews.com/35542/terrorism-tanzania-tour…

eturbonews.com/35488/bomb-blast-rocks-northe…

eturbonews.com/35554/tourist-town-arusha-und…

Calgary, Alberta...
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1. Re: Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

Security advice from work says travel to Arusha is still safe but minimize movement and stay away from any large gatherings and where police are forming up:

◦Anticipate heightened security in Arusha, and carry photographic identification documents to ease passage through security checkpoints.

◦Public gatherings have been banned by the authorities following the fatal bombing. The police are therefore liable to forcibly disperse any unauthorised rallies with measures such as tear gas, which would pose incidental risks to bystanders. Avoid all political events and large crowds as a basic security precaution.

◦Monitor the situation in Arusha via trusted contacts, the local media and our travel security alerts on Tanzania.

Minimise movement, monitor situation in Arusha following reported unrest at opposition rally

According to local sources, the security forces on 18 June fired tear gas to disperse an unauthorised rally by the opposition Party for Democracy and Development (CHADEMA) at a stadium in the Soweto district, in the Kaloleni area of Arusha city (Arusha region). Some injuries have been reported and the authorities have detained several people, including opposition leaders, following the disturbances. The CHADEMA gathering had been organised to commemorate those killed in a bombing at the party's rally in the city on 15 June.

Travel Advice

◦Personnel in Arusha should minimise movement until the situation clarifies.

◦Anticipate a heightened security presence and spot-checks. Carry photographic identification documents to ease passage through security checkpoints.

◦Public gatherings have been banned by the authorities following the fatal bombing. The police are therefore liable to forcibly disperse any unauthorised rallies with measures such as tear gas, which would pose incidental risks to bystanders. Avoid all political events and large crowds as a basic security precaution.

◦Monitor the situation in Arusha via trusted contacts, the local media and our travel security alerts on Tanzania.

Findlay, Ohio
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2. Re: Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

I would not say Arusha is under siege. I would say that they are in a confused state right now. Here is a news report on the situation from today's Daily News. dailynews.co.tz/index.php/local-news/18811-4…

It is very hard to say what happened. Chadema is a rather large opposition party, and in the last national election they garnered the most votes ever against the ruling party Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM). The CCM has been the ruling party since Tz Independence, not always called CCM but it is the same party which has always ruled Tz. Chadema is the first real opposition to them. So it's difficult to say what has caused this, and no one should speculate.

But if you are going there, do not go to areas where there are gatherings of people, and especially at no time should you ever go into an area where there is a political gathering, you have no business there.

Saint Paul...
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3. Re: Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

I am not in Arusha, but I have spoken to several different people in Arusha over the last 24 hours. We have several reports that business continued as usual today in Arusha. The only difference was that no crowds were allowed to gather.

The articles you linked to seem to give a good overview of what happened. As always, in situations like this, reliable information is slow and rumors are fast.

Perhaps at some point tourists were redirected but today, it seemed that wasn't happening to the people we had in Arusha. They were continuing as usual with no visible signs of anything troubling at all.

Saint Paul...
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4. Re: Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

Karl: "I would not say Arusha is under siege. I would say that they are in a confused state right now. "

Well-said. Add the word confused, because I do think most Tanzanians are surprised. Let's hope they figure this out and settle it all down.

Isle of Man, United...
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5. Re: Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

I agree. News is being sensationalised.

I was advised yesterday, 18th, that there was a bombing over the week end at a Chadema rally. Two died and 15-20 injured.

Rumours kicked off but Chadema say it was planted by CCM.

This resulted in a riot and road blocks established. Quite what the truth is will emerge in due time.

I regard my source as reliable and on the ground.

Keep calm and avoid crowds.

Edit. Not seen Bryans post when I wrote mine which it seems to support..

Edited: 6:22 pm, June 19, 2013
Ottawa, Canada
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6. Re: Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

Perhaps I am being cynical but I wonder if it would have gotten the same headlines if Presidents of other countries weren't involved. Unfortunately, there have been recent incidents both political and religious.

There were riots in Zanzibar and two blocks away tourists had no idea and were not impacted. Definitely keep your ears to the ground. If travelling solo, ask advise of your hotel. If on safari, heed your TO. They do not want travellers involved or injured, and will clearly be monitoring activities. Tourists are not the targets.

Practice good sense and be alert.

Calgary, Alberta...
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7. Re: Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

Interesting they used the same headline when George Bush visited Arusha in 2008 at the same website

eturbonews.com/1348/george-w-bush-places-aru…

Obama is visiting in a few weeks so someone recycled this headline. I guess my question in answered, Arusha is not under siege except when Obama is there, if he even goes there.

Findlay, Ohio
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8. Re: Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

He was going to take in a safari while he was there (Obama that is); but that got cancelled, thank goodness. If you've ever been around these politicos you know that they clear the places out when they are around. I will never forget when the former PM from Tz came and visited us in the US. I went to his hotel the evening he arrived and was stopped by the US Secret Service in the hallway. They wouldn't let me go to his room (I had told the PM that I would come there). I then asked them if they would go and tell him that I was in the hall, they refused. I then asked if I could stay there until he came out because I knew he would be going to dinner soon, they refused and told me that I couldn't remain there. I told the man that it was amazing that a few weeks earlier I had been in his office in Dodoma, and all I had to do was get past his secretary which wasn't any problem, but when he comes to the US I can't get near him. The guy just said you can't remain here. So I moved on down the hallway away from them, and waited. When the PM came out of his room, he hollered down to me and asked why I hadn't went to his room. I walked down and when I went past the person who had detained me, I told the PM, why don't you ask this man he wouldn't allow me to come any closer. The guy who stopped me then looked at me and said, you weren't kidding were you, and I said I don't kid. (now that was a lie). The next evening it was a different person guarding the hall and the same thing happened again. I waited in the bar.

Edited: 9:55 pm, June 19, 2013
melbourne
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9. Re: Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

Craig

Arusha is not under seige. There was an incident politically motivated who knows by whom.

With the social media available such as facebook..texting etc my wife is in daily, sometimes hourly, sometimes non stop for hours... contact with friends and relatives. In Arusha, Moshi and Dar Es Salaam.

Heed the excellent advice in post 6 if you are thinking of travelling to Tz.

I copy it for emphasis, couldn't have said it better no matter how much I tried....

"They do not want travellers involved or injured, and will clearly be monitoring activities. Tourists are not the targets.

Practice good sense and be alert."

10. Re: Arusha under Seige? Anyone on the ground there?

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