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Cablegate: Welcome Cable for Staffdel Casey (October 25-58, 2009)

VZCZCXYZ0015
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHKU #1009/01 2951010
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 221010Z OCT 09
FM AMEMBASSY KUWAIT
TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4085

UNCLAS KUWAIT 001009

CODEL
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OREP AMGT ASEC AFIN KU IR
SUBJECT: WELCOME CABLE FOR STAFFDEL CASEY (OCTOBER 25-58, 2009)

REF: STATE 105718

1. Embassy Kuwait welcomes StaffDel Casey to travel to post from Oct
25-58, 2009.

2. Visit Officer: An Embassy visit officer and an expeditor will
meet and assist you upon arrival.

Embassy point of contact is:


Kristina Weiss, ISU Liaison
Office- (965) 2259-1170
Cell- (965)9985-1697
Fax- (965) 2259-1190
Unclass e-mail: WeissKA@state.gov


3. Lodging: Rooms have been reserved at the Crowne Plaza Hotel for
Oct 25-28, 2009. The hotel telephone number is (965) 2474-2000 and
the fax number is (965)2474-2460. The single room rate at the hotel
is approximately USD306.00 per night, which includes breakfast. The
hotel accepts major credit cards and is within the per diem rate.
The daily per diem rate for Kuwait is USD 339.00 for lodging, plus a
meal and incidental expense (M&IE) allowance of USD 109.00 for a
total of USD448.00.

4. Following is post's standard guidance for visitors to Kuwait:

a. Entry Requirements: Kuwait now issues single-entry visas to
American citizens on arrival, upon presentation of a valid passport.
There is a processing fee of KD 3.000, or USD 15.00 for each visa
issued. Post strongly advises travelers to carry some documentation
on the purpose of their visit. Passengers arriving on other than
commercial flights should anticipate extra delays, because
immigration services are not available on the military side of the
airfield and passports have to be carried to a different location at
the airport for processing. Airport visas are valid for 90 days
after arrival; anyone staying beyond this period must obtain an
extension, which should be requested 2 weeks prior to visa
expiration. Anyone departing Kuwait who has overstayed the visa
will be charged a fine of KD 10.000 (US 35.00) per day at the
airport. All travelers planning to visit Iraq should make sure that
they obtain the required exit/entry stamps for each transit through
Kuwait, and be aware that they will need to obtain a new Kuwaiti
visa upon return, even after a daytrip to Baghdad. Failure to do so
can result in heavy fines. If possible, travelers should try to
obtain a multiple-entry visa before arriving in Kuwait.

b. Visitors are reminded that the importation of alcohol, pork
products, personal firearms, and any suggestive/pornographic
materials (videotapes, magazines or books) is strictly prohibited by
Kuwaiti law. Kuwait is still clearing mines and munitions. Visitors
must remain on major paved roads when traveling in Kuwait. Travel
north of Jahra toward the Iraqi-Kuwaiti border is not authorized
without approval from the embassy and an appropriate escort.

c. Embassy Kuwait's normal workweek is Sunday through Thursday, and
office hours are from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The time difference
with the East Coast of the United States is EST plus eight hours.
The embassy switchboard number is (965) 2259-1001, and the IVG
number is 4950000. The after-hours number which rings at Marine
Guard Post One is (965) 2538-2098. The mission duty officer can be
reached through the embassy switchboard, Post One or by cell phone
at (965) 9967-7265. The embassy pouch address is 6200 Kuwait Place,
Dulles, VA 20189-6200.

d. Threat Assessment: Kuwait is a high-threat post and the military
threatcon is currently Charlie. We have increased security
precautions at official U.S. installations in Kuwait and recommend
that all Americans in Kuwait remain alert to their surroundings and
review their personal security practices.

e. Health Advisory for Kuwait: Visitors from November to March can
expect cold winds and, at times, heavy rains. Light winter clothing
is suitable for Kuwait during these months. At this time, allergies
and colds are more common, and visitors to the area are advised to
bring over-the-counter medications, such as Tylenol, Ibuprofen and
cough medicine, with them for self-treatment. April through October
is the hot season in Kuwait. Temperatures reach 120-140 degrees F
in summer. Caution should be taken to prevent dehydration and heat
exhaustion by 1) drinking plenty of fluids and 2) staying indoors,
especially during peak temperature hours of noon to 3:00 p.m.
1200-1500). Low humidity coupled with high temperatures creates
excessive moisture loss from evaporation. It is necessary to drink
2-4 quarts of water daily to prevent dehydration.

f. Money: Credit cards are widely accepted at hotels, restaurants
and other establishments throughout Kuwait and ATM machines are also
readily available. For travelers on official orders, the Commercial
Bank of Kuwait can provide accommodation services (cashing a
personal check drawn on a U.S. bank into local currency) up to a
maximum of USD 300.00 per day from noon to 2:00 p.m., Saturday
through Wednesday. At the current rate of exchange, one Kuwaiti
Dinar (KD) is equivalent to approximately USD 3.65.

g. CAA Access: Visitors who need unescorted access into secure
areas of the mission must slug cables to the attention of the RSO,
and include the level of their clearance. The cable should include
the visitor's Social Security Number, and the name of the agency
granting the clearance. Cables should include the ASEC tag to
ensure distribution to the RSO office and the Marine Security guard
at Post One.

h. Computer and Electronics Usage: Sensitive military information
has been discovered recently on business center computers at local
hotels in Kuwait City. All U.S. Government personnel and
contractors must remember that it is their responsibility to observe
good computer and information security practices. Information
processed on computers in hotel business centers, through email
correspondence or document creation, is highly exploitable. Public
computers located in hotel business centers, internet cafes, airport
lounges, etc. should never be used to process, store or disseminate
sensitive information. Compromise of sensitive government or
military information can result in serious damage to national
security. Compromises of sensitive personal data can result in
significant personal and financial hardship. Random checks are
conducted by Embassy personnel on public PC's. Breaches on COMPUSEC
will result in the violator receiving security infractions and/or
security violations. Interagency security standards prohibit the
introduction or use of non-USG owned computer hardware and software
at all USG diplomatic facilities. Cell phones, palm pilots, radios
and other convenience electronics are prohibited in all secure areas
of the mission.

i. Photography: Tourist photography is encouraged in Kuwait.
However, it is strictly forbidden to photograph public buildings,
economic infrastructure, or military and other security-related
facilities and personnel. Confiscation of film and camera and even
arrest may result from doing so. A good rule of thumb: If there is
any doubt as to whether a photograph should be taken, don't take
it.

j. Action Request: Each visitor, regardless of length of stay, must
bring or forward fiscal data to pay for direct costs of the visit.
Each agency, organization or visiting delegation will be charged for
the actual costs attributed to their visit. Direct charge costs
include, but are not limited to: American and LES staff overtime
(e.g., expeditor, accommodation exchange, representational event
support), field travel, lodging and meals and incidental expenses
(M&IE) by embassy employees, vehicle rentals, long-distance
telephone calls, equipment rentals, office supplies and all other
costs that are directly attributable to the visit. If fiscal data
on a traveler's authorization is to be used for this purpose, this
information must be spelled out in the travel orders and sufficient
funding provided to meet these expenses. In addition, for TDYers
over thirty (30) days, there will be a charge for ICASS support
services. If your sponsoring agency is not signed up for ICASS
services at post, please be prepared to sign an ICASS Memorandum of
Understanding (MOU) for ICASS support services upon arrival. The
agency should provide post with written communication, generated by
the traveler's headquarters, that confirms the agency will pay ICASS
charges for the TDYer, provide the agency ICASS billing code for the
TDY support to be provided, and authorize the traveler to sign the
ICASS invoice generated by the TDY module. When travel is urgent,
TDYers should bring this document with them to ensure there are no
interruptions in the provision of services. Post will not provide
any services to a TDYer staying in excess of 30 days without having
received this documentation prior to day 31 of the TDY.

k. Visit Kuwait's Classified Website at
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/nea/kuwait/

Jones

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