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Bahamas Issues Warning to Citizens Visiting U.S.

Associated Press

The Bahamas is warning its citizens, particularly young males, to exercise caution when traveling to the United States in light of tensions between Black Americans and police.

In a statement issued on Friday, the Caribbean nation’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a warning, not unlike those the U.S. State Department issues to Americans traveling to nations experiencing extremist violence, telling them to be cautious and cooperative with authorities.

We wish to advise all Bahamians traveling to the US but especially to the affected cities to exercise appropriate caution generally. In particular young males are asked to exercise extreme caution in affected cities in their interactions with the police. Do not be confrontational and cooperate.

If there is any issue please allow consular offices for The Bahamas to deal with the issues. Do not get involved in political or other demonstrations under any circumstances and avoid crowds.

No particular event or incident is mentioned by the travel warning, but it ostensibly refers to the recent deaths of Black men in police involved shootings that have spurred nationwide protests, one of which in Dallas ended in a multiple shooting that killed five police officers and wounded seven others.

America is a popular travel destination for Bahamians during the country’s three-day Independence holiday weekend. The country, which sits on a series of islands about 50 miles south of Florida, has for years been a popular destination for American travelers, but there is no specific State Department warning for travel there.

Although rare, the Bahamas travel warning is not unique. Other nations have issued similar warnings for its citizens as well. Mexico, for example, told its residents not long after a 2010 Arizona bill was passed targeting undocumented people, to expect harassment in that state. And both Germany and Canada warn travelers from those nations that America has a high rate of both gun ownership and use and that its citizens should exercise extreme caution.