LONDON, March 16 Standard Chartered (STAN.L) and
HSBC Holdings (HSBA.L) said they have closed all their branches
in Bahrain on Wednesday, after Bahraini forces clashed with
Bahrain on Tuesday declared martial law to quell worsening
sectarian unrest that has sucked in troops from fellow
Sunni-ruled neighbour Saudi Arabia. [ID:nLDE72F02J]
StanChart has seven branches in Bahrain and HSBC has four
branches, making them two of the leading foreign banks in the
country. They had each kept two branches open on Tuesday.
Both banks said their priority was the safety of staff.
StanChart has 500 employees and HSBC has 334. All were safe. The
banks said other banking operations, such as ATMs, were
operating as usual.
(Reporting by Steve Slater)