London: The UK has advised its citizens against traveling to Sri Lanka amid the ongoing political and economic instability. “The FCDO advises against all but essential travel to #Sri_Lanka, due to ongoing political and economic instability. This advice does not apply to airside transit through Sri Lanka`s international airport,” the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) said in a statement. (sic)
“If you are in Sri Lanka at this time, or considering travel, you should avoid all protests and follow the advice of local authorities,” it added.
This comes as the State of Emergency has been declared and an island-wide curfew is in place. Several incidents took place on May 9 involving violence against protesters, including in the Galle Face area in Colombo, that resulted in the death of several people.
“There have been a number of protests since 31 March 2022. Further protests are likely to take place across the island. The Government of Sri Lanka may impose local restrictions at short notice. You should be vigilant, avoid any demonstrations or large gatherings, and follow the advice of the local authorities,” the UK advisory said.
The economic situation is deteriorating in Sri Lanka with shortages of basic necessities including medicines, cooking gas, fuel and food because of a shortage of hard currency to pay for imports.
There may be long queues at shops and supermarkets, fuel stations, and pharmacies. There are ongoing daily power cuts due to electricity rationing.