Avoid non-essential visits to Sri Lanka: MEA advisory

At least 11 citizens of India were among the deceased when the suicide bombers blew themselves up at churches and hotels in Sri Lanka on the Easter Sunday. (AFP File Photo)

India on Saturday advised its citizens to avoid all non-essential travel to Sri Lanka, where a string of terror attacks on churches and hotels killed 253 people and injured many others on April 21 last.

“In view of the prevailing security situation in Sri Lanka in the aftermath of terror attacks on 21 April 2019, Indian nationals intending to travel to Sri Lanka are advised not to undertake non-essential travel,” the Ministry of External Affairs stated in a travel advisory issued on Saturday.

At least 11 citizens of India were among the deceased when the suicide bombers blew themselves up at churches and hotels in Sri Lanka on the Easter Sunday.

New Delhi issued the travel advisory after 10 civilians, including six children, along with six suspected terrorists were also killed during a police raid on a hideout of the extremists in eastern Sri Lanka late on Friday.

The MEA also advised Indian citizens travelling to Sri Lanka on essential or emergency visits to keep in touch with the High Commission of India in Colombo and other diplomatic and consular missions of India in the neighbouring island nation.

“In case of those undertaking essential or emergency travels, they can contact the High Commission of India in Colombo or the Assistant High Commission in Kandy / Consulates in Hambantota and Jaffna in case of requirement of any assistance,” said the MEA. The helpline numbers of the Indian High Commission are available on the website of the High Commission of India in Colombo.

New Delhi, however, noted that the Government of Sri Lanka had beefed up the security in the country. “A nation-wide emergency including night time curfew is in place at present which may also affect travel within Sri Lanka,” the MEA added in its travel advisory.

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