Britain advises nationals to leave Syria

20th April 2011, Comments 0 comments

Britain on Wednesday urged its nationals to leave Syria amid escalating unrest in the country against the regime of President Bashar al-Assad.

The Foreign Office said Britons should leave the country on commercial flights while airports remained open.

"In light of the deterioration in the security situation in Syria, we have amended our travel advice to inform British nationals that they should consider leaving Syria by commercial means," a spokesman said.

"At present there is relative freedom of movement, with all major roads and airports remaining open and with commercial airlines still running scheduled services with capacity available.

"It should therefore be possible for British nationals to leave if they choose to do so."

The British government previously advised against all but essential travel to Syria, the latest country in the Middle East where long-entrenched regimes are facing opposition protests.

Amnesty International says around 220 people have been killed by security forces or plain-clothes police since the start of the protests in Syria.

At least 10 people were reported killed on Tuesday in clashes in the central city of Homs, where some 20,000 people staged an overnight sit-in protest demanding Assad stand down.

© 2011 AFP

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