Britain, Canada, Australia, US, France issue travel warnings (Lead)

November 27th, 2008 - 10:37 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Nov 27 (IANS) With the Mumbai terrorist attacks continuing for over 24 hours, the US, Britain, Canada, Australia and France were quick to warn their citizens to avoid travel to India’s financial capital.The US embassy here issued a warden message, urging Americans to defer travel to Mumbai for at least the next 48 to 72 hours.

It noted that some of the media reports indicated that Americans were targeted. This follows reports that terrorists were specifically looking for British and US passport holders at the Taj Mahal Hotel and the Oberoi Trident, the two five-star hotels which they attacked late Wednesday night in Mumbai.

“Americans are advised to monitor local news reports, vary their routes and times in carrying out daily activities, and consider the level of security present when visiting public places, including religious sites, or hotels, restaurants, entertainment and recreation venues,” the embassy said.

The British foreign office advised against “all non-essential travel to Mumbai until further notice”.

“If you are currently in Mumbai, we advise you to stay indoors and monitor the media,” it said, noting that the British nationals should contact their travel agents for information as some flights have been cancelled.

The foreign office also gave Mumbai and Britain phones numbers for British citizens to contact for information.

“We advise all British nationals in the city to stay indoors until local authorities advise that it is safe to go outside,” the notice added.

The Australian foreign ministry’s travel advisory also had a similar tenor, advising nationals to exercise a “high degree of caution”, and asked them to avoid travel to the city.

“Pay close attention to your personal security at all times and monitor the media and other local information sources for information about possible new safety or security risks,” it said.

The advisory includes contact numbers in Mumbai and Australia for information.

Similarly, the Canadian High Commission in New Delhi and the French embassy also issued travel advisories, urging their citizens to take care, and posted phone numbers for information.

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