December 05, 2006 at 12:00 PM EST

As PopWatch reported earlier this afternoon, today’s coup in Fiji erupted as the cast and crew of Survivor were in the country, where they’re close to finishing filming on the show’s 14th season. Now, we have exclusive word from the set on how today’s upheaval is affecting the popular CBS game show. “To be shooting Survivor while the host country is in the midst of a coup is a bit surreal for all of us here in Fiji,” writes host Jeff Probst in an e-mail to EW. “We have set up our satellite TV in the catering area [for producers and crew members only] and during dinner the entire crew watches the local news to get updates on what is happening.”

Military forces have confined the elected prime minister Laisenia Qarase to his home, leading the U.S. State Department to condemn the coup and temporarily suspend aid to the county. Still, Probst and others do not feel their safety threatened. “Fortunately, we are on another island that is a 30-minute flight away from the capital city of Suva where the coup is centered,” writes the host. “Everyone here is safe and the disruptions thus far have been minimal. We had a few production staff stationed in Suva that we brought back to base camp, and during the past week any crew members that were scheduled to fly to location were unable to due to flight cancellations. Otherwise, we have continued filming without interruption.”

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