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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 26 January 2021

UAE embassy warns Emiratis in US after violent Washington protests

UAE citizens abroad advised to stay home after supporters of Donald Trump storm Capitol

The UAE embassy in Washington has urged its citizens to avoid protest locations in the US capital.

The warning came after supporters of President Donald Trump stormed Capitol Hill on Wednesday, forcing a lockdown during a debate to certify November’s presidential election result.

Sharing a tweet by the mayor of Washington, ordering a 12-hour curfew, the embassy called on UAE citizens to “stay away from protest areas in the city, and to abide by the curfew decision starting from 6pm today until 6am”.

The embassy also issued a number for people to call in cases of emergency, (202) 243-2400.

Rioters climbed walls of the complex and entered through broken windows, resulting in an armed stand-off as politicians took cover inside. One woman died after being shot during the violence. The debates have since resumed, with Senate members heavily voting down a challenge against Arizona's electoral college votes by 303-121.

Last year, UAE ambassador to the US Yousef Al Otaiba said about 5,000 Emiratis lived in the US at any given time.

The vast majority are students though some are in the US for medical treatment or to accompany sick family members.

"Ninety-nine per cent of them are students or patients. The number of Emiratis who live here on their own outside that is virtually none,” he said.

Other than the embassy in Washington, the UAE has consulates in Los Angeles, New York, Boston and Houston.

Updated: January 7, 2021 12:19 PM

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