Saudi clamp on causeway travellers
Manama, March 30, 2011
Saudis travelling across King Fahad Causeway were yesterday reportedly asked to explain why they needed to enter Bahrain.
A checkpoint set up at the toll booths asked travellers to show their CPR, student or work identity cards.
Those unable to present such documents were told to turn back.
A Saudi family who were dropping off their daughter who works in Bahrain said they were stopped by Saudi police at the start of the causeway.
'They asked us where we were going and why,' said the father, who wished to remain unidentified.
'I told them I was dropping off my daughter who works in Bahrain.
'The officer then asked to show proof that I work or live in Bahrain. My daughter then presented her CPR.'
Upon reaching the Saudi passports section, the official reportedly also inquired why the family were travelling to Bahrain.
'When I repeated my reason, he asked for the CPR immediately,' he said. 'He then returned all our IDs and wished us a safe trip.'
The father also mentioned that Bahraini officials were treating their arrival as normal, with no queries about their whereabouts or destination.
A Saudi student, who wished to be identified only as Tariq, told our sister newspaper Gulf Daily News (GDN) he was allowed entry upon presenting his university ID card and timetable.
'Before, I was not allowed entry as officials said all educational institutes were closed until further notice as the situation was not safe,' he said.
'But I guess it looks safe enough as my university opened its doors and the causeway allowed me in after almost two weeks.'
The 23-year-old said fellow students were waiting for him to inform them about the situation so they could also cross the causeway.
'We are worried about our educational future with this situation so being able to cross is a positive step towards getting things back to normal,' he said.
Security measures on the causeway were stepped up since the unrest started on February 14. Cars were checked by police from both sides of the causeway.-TradeArabia News Service