5 December, 2020

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Warning To Brits: British Foreign Ministry Updated Travel Advice On Sri Lanka

The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office has updated the travel advice on Sri Lanka. Read the full update below;
Safety and security

Crime

Credit card fraud is the most common type of crime affecting visitors. Use cash wherever possible and only use ATMs attached to banks or major hotels. Don’t lose sight of your credit card if you use it. Some travellers experience problems using their cards on arrival in Sri Lanka when their banks’ automated fraud protection system blocks transactions. It may be possible to avoid this by informing your bank in advance of your intended travel arrangements. There are plenty of money-changers in tourist areas if you want to change cash.

Foreign secretary William Hague

Foreign secretary William Hague

Violent crimes against foreigners are infrequent, although there have been an increasing number of reports of sexual offences including on minors. When travelling around Sri Lanka, you should make arrangements through reputable travel companies and take care.Women should take particular care when travelling alone or in small groups, and carry a personal alarm.

There have been reports of thefts from hotels and guesthouses. You should take precautions to safeguard your valuables, especially passports and money.

Organised and armed gangs are known to operate in Sri Lanka and have been responsible for targeted kidnappings and violence. While there is no evidence to suggest that British nationals are at particular risk, gangs have been known to operate in tourist areas. A British national was killed during a violent attack by a gang in a tourist resort in December 2011.

The Sri Lankan justice system can be slower than in the UK. There are currently a number of outstanding cases of crimes against British Nationals which have yet to reach trial.

Disputes between market traders and street hawkers can sometimes become violent. In 2010, an explosive device injured a number of people following a dispute in Pettah, Colombo.

There have been reports of drinks being spiked with drugs in bars and restaurants in southern beach resorts. Be careful about taking drinks from strangers at bars and restaurants, and don’t leave drinks unattended.

Local travel – North

The Government of Sri Lanka has announced that foreign nationals travelling to the northern districts of Jaffna, Kilinochchi, Mullaittivu, Mannar and Vavuniya no longer need to get permission from the Sri Lankan Ministry of Defence. However, foreign media crews will still need prior permission to travel to these districts. Travellers to the north may still encounter restrictions around military establishments and areas where demining operations continue. For more information about the accessibility of a particular area, contact the Sri Lankan Military Liaison Officer on +94 11 2430 860.

Local travel – Jaffna Peninsula

There is free movement everywhere outside High Security Zones with fewer checkpoints around the Peninsula. Operations to clear mines continue, particularly in the heavily mined area towards Elephant Pass.

Local travel – Kilinochchi, Mullaittivu, Mannar and Vavuniya

There is a continued heavy military presence. It’s generally possible to move around freely, although some checkpoints remain (notably Omanthai). There was severe war damage to property throughout the northern region so accommodation options and infrastructure are limited. Some areas were heavily mined and operations to clear minefields continue. There are signs warning of mined areas but you should take care.

Local travel – East

Demining, weapons and ordnance clearance and resettlement operations are ongoing in parts of Trincomalee, Batticaloa and Ampara Districts. Always obey orders from the security forces and look out for signs warning of landmines. Don’t leave the roads or cleared footpaths and, if in any doubt, contact the local security authorities for advice.

Local travel – South

Only ‘Block One’ of Yala National Park (also known as Ruhuna National Park) is accessible to the public. If you plan to visit the park, use a reputable tour company.

Swimming

Many beaches in Sri Lanka have dangerous surf or rip tides at certain times of the year. Always take local advice before entering the sea. A number of foreign nationals have drowned.

Road travel

You will need an International Driving Permit and a Sri Lankan recognition permit to drive in Sri Lanka. You can obtain a recognition permit at the AA in Colombo. A British driving licence on its own will not suffice. Always wear a seatbelt and make sure you’re insured.

Many roads, particularly outside the major towns are in a serious state of disrepair Driving is erratic and there are frequent road accidents, particularly at night. Pedestrians and animals often appear in the road without warning. Vehicles don’t stop at pedestrian crossings. Riding a motorbike is particularly dangerous. If you have a collision, stay at the site of the accident with your vehicle as long as it is safe to do so. If it is not safe or if you feel threatened, report to the local police station.

Security checkpoints and roadblocks still occur in parts of the country. Take care when passing through them, and always obey the instructions of the police or army on duty. There have been cases where security forces have opened fire on vehicles that don’t stop when asked. Roads around Government and military sites in Colombo are regularly closed for security reasons (e.g. VIP convoys).

Buses are notorious for driving fast and rarely giving way. They are often poorly maintained. A number of serious bus accidents have occurred in recent years.

Taxis are inexpensive. Motorised rickshaws (tuk-tuks) are available for hire in towns and villages. Agree a price before you set off or look for one with a working meter. Most travellers report no difficulties, although there have been reports of harassment, particularly of lone female travellers at night. Change to a different rickshaw if you have any concerns about the driver or standard of driving.

Sea travel

Entry into Sri Lankan waters, at any point, requires prior permission.

You should avoid the coastline and adjacent territorial sea of the Trincomalee, Mullaittivu, Jaffna, Kilinochchi and Mannar administrative districts in the north and east, which have been declared restricted zones by the Sri Lankan authorities.

Although no acts of piracy have been reported in the Sri Lankan Economic Exclusive Zone, piracy is a significant threat in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean, especially for shipping which does not take appropriate precautions or follow agreed shipping industry best practice guidelines. See Piracy in the Indian Ocean.

See our Piracy in the Indian Ocean page.

Political situation

Political rallies in Sri Lanka have on occasion turned violent. You should avoid any political gathering or rally and be wary of spontaneous large gatherings. Carry a form of official photographic identification with you at all times. You should follow local news closely in case a curfew or other restrictions are announced.

Since the end of the military conflict in May 2009, there has been an increase in nationalism including at times anti-western rhetoric. In the past, there have been protests against the British High Commission and other diplomatic premises. Although no protests have so far been directed at the British community more generally, you should be vigilant and avoid demonstrations.

Avoid military bases and buildings, which were the most frequent target of attacks and which now maintain high security in many districts in the north and east.

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Latest comments

  • 4
    10

    On UK Racism at work the following
    A BBC undercover investigation revealed that UK tenants do not rent out homes to non-whites though under the Equality Act 2010, it is illegal for businesses to refuse to provide a service based on ethnicity.. http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-london-24372509

    Muslims must note that over 700 mosques have been attacked in the UK since 2001 – how safe will Sri Lankan Muslims be travelling to UK? how safe are Sri Lankan dual passport holders living in the UK?

    As of 11 February 2011 attacks on Muslims in Scotland have contributing to a 20% increase in racist incidents over the past 12 months. Reports say every day in Scotland, 17 people are abused, threatened or violently attacked because of the colour of their skin, ethnicity or nationality. Statistics showed that just under 5,000 incidents of racism were recorded in 2009/10, a slight decrease from racist incidents recorded in 2008/9

    From 2004 to 2012 the rate of racist incidents has been around 5,000 incidents per year.

    In 2011-12, there were 5,389 racist incidents recorded by the police, which is a 10% increase on the 4,911 racist incidents recorded in 2010-11.

    A third of Brits admit they are racist. Data from 90 councils detail 87,915 ‘racist incidents’ at primary and secondary schools between 2007 and 2011.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2151056/Is-Britain-racist-nation-One-Brits-admits-racist-according-poll.html

    • 2
      7

      UK divided India & Pakistan which left One Million dead,……&….&….&….thousands more atrocities ,crimes committed….

      Recently UK became party to Iraq invasion with US that left 1.2 million dead & no body in UK was court martialled

      • 3
        4

        WHAT BULL S*****.. REMEMBER BURMA.. Remember how all these so called concerns and Travel Advices were and the bleak human rights record they told the world.. Ahhh i dont even have the time to give the list.. But after the release of an san suu kyi.. the VERY NEXT day all these so called warnings and rights disappeared. In fact these clowns were falling over each other to go to that nation and shake the hands of the Junta or government there.. this is Just a show for their so called HR resolution. A Joke

        • 1
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          Just read this for a change: Colonial master Cameron acted as a Goliath and a bully when he visited a small country, Sri Lanka in Nov 2013. Barely a month afterward when he visited well to do and powerful China, he chose to be a meek pussy cat? No mention of its human rights etc that Britain and its neo-con gang were once screaming about.

          Pro-Government Chinese paper ‘The Global Times’ had put Britain and Cameron in the right prospective. The paper equated Cameron’s tour to an “ice-breaking” visit and said Britain is no “big power”. “It is just an old European country apt for travel and study. This has gradually become the habitual thought of the Chinese people,” the damning editorial said.

          Mr Cameron also received abuse after joining Weibo – the Chinese version of Twitter.

          Chinese followers reminded him of the British-Chinese opium wars in the 19th Century. In fact one user posted: “Mr Prime Minister, are you bringing opium with you?” Other posts read: “When will you compensate us for the Old Summer Palace?” and “Dalai’s friend has come to China for our silver.”

    • 6
      3

      Do not dump that truck load of crap that Senali Waduge dish out at a small/closed enclave called LW created by Racists and read by a handful of Racists. CT is a balanced public forum read by tens of thousands of educated people around the world. Please do not soil it with Senali’s crap that comes out from her foul mind.

      • 2
        1

        You do not like Senali talk the truth.

        • 3
          0

          Either we do not like the Lellawathie pimping around in CT.

        • 0
          1

          Rather, we will ditch the ‘[Edited out]’ in his every futile attempts.

        • 3
          1

          Wathie
          Senali may be right in her statistics but the way she
          puts that to readers is not really right.Firstly,the
          travel advice is for British nationals,a precaution.
          What’s wrong in British govt being serious about the
          safety of their citizens going holidays to places of
          some sort of risk?And secondly,why is that Senali fails
          to see that our Srilankan rulers so far have not issued
          any such warnings to their citizens of racist attacks
          in Britain?Thirdly,Senali demonstrates the typical
          mentality of the current regime,putting the blame of
          all their evils on the past UNP,so that they are clean.
          What’s this monkey see monkey do?We all along say we
          are a proud culture and if that is the case,why try to
          justify our evils pointing at somebody alse?If they do
          it,should we do that too?Then,why don’t you look at
          their social benefit system and follow it too?British
          govt does not encourage,support or sponsor racism
          like we have in our country,going against even
          prevailing constitutionally guaranteed rights of other
          people and even against the Sinhala themselves?How do
          you explain that?

        • 0
          0

          Wathie
          Please read social benefit as social welfare benefits.
          Thanks.

        • 0
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          Shenali is a liar who propagates Sinhala Nationalism. Case in point is her attempt to paint the Sinhalese as indegenous to lanka and attempts to Sinhalize the Veddah.

      • 3
        1

        Silva,
        Why don’t you counter Senali rather than yapping garbage?

    • 2
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      Spot on! Britain is such a hell hole, I cannot understand why there are so many Sri Lankans (particularly Singhalese) living there, studying and working, propping up a dying, racist kingdom. It is imperative that OUR state websites and our local newspapers issue advance warnings to our people against going to the UK (unless absolutely essential). Far too many Sri Lankans are discovering too late that the streets of the UK are NOT paved with gold. The whole trouble is that there are still too many brown sahib Sri Lankans who want to live there and come back from time to time and act all high and mighty. Also, they go to lots of inconvenience to send their children to the UK for education. They have to pay higher fees and when they qualify they stay on to serve the British. Another small point: we must prevent the Cricket Board from employing any British coaches – what is wrong with our own?

      • 1
        1

        Spring
        What about bringing down the exchange rate of
        £1.00=Rs218.00 to £1.00=Cts0.75???? Just for
        a change!!!! And we Buddhist nation won’t buy
        anything from them and we plant BO trees for
        tea!!!!We also send the Army and Police home
        and clear the way for BBS to guard the country
        against all these Halal menace and foreign
        unnecessary interventions??????This accountability
        International investigation,human right this and
        that,we don’t need all these,do we?Yes,go on
        reverse and find the truth!!

    • 3
      3

      Your statistics may be true. But non of these events were state sponsored nor done infront of police and media. Criminals were prosecuted. Here in SL all the politicians, preists and thugs are above law. They can’t be penalised as per “common law and military law”.

      • 3
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        Web,
        Oh, I was in the UK when a single Bangladesh was killed in East Ham, London by arsonists in 1970s and skinheads marched the streets to promote that Bangladeshi’s killing shouting ‘Enoch’, ‘Enoch’, ‘one down and million to go.’ I saw in TV police marching with them in both sides of the street. Mind you Enoch Powell is a white supremacist.

    • 4
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      Senali,
      Excellent statement. Hope some of the retards posting here will understand. You will have no counter statements but a lot of name callings!

    • 3
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      Ahh.., the Sinhala Nationalist tactic of delfection, of pointing the finger elsewhere as if that somehow negates GOSL and Sinhala Nationalism.

    • 2
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      Senali wrote to LW,

      Thanks a lot for posting. UK’s hypocrisy has reached a new high.
      This in nothing but a political tool.

      Yes, we have grave issues to resolve in Sri Lanka. This is not the way to go about it.

      UK is a crime ridden society too. In fact, Credit Card fraud based in UK was a major source of fianancing for LTTE terrorists.

      Please update Sri Lanka’s Travel Advisory to UK. It will not be nice reading for William Hague.

      Cheers!

      • 1
        1

        Every country has issues, it is the severity of the issues and the level of freedom people enjoy that matter. So your attempt to compare the UK to Sri Lanka is laughable. There is no comparison, minorities and people in general are relatively free in the UK, NOT so in Lanka.

  • 4
    4

    British citizens are disgusted with their corrupt politicians. Poor governance brought UK to its knees financially. Millions lost their jobs and the Gov. allowed big businesses to outsource jobs to third world countries. People are in austerity. Now they have bleeding hearts for the citizens on their travel??? This is nothing but for political advantage. Lets see how many Brits will believe these corrupt politicians and refrain from traveling to Sri Lanka.

    • 7
      1

      ONLY difference between UK and Sri Lanka, the whole machinery from policeman to President in Sri Lanka are corrupt and murderers.

      • 2
        3

        Ajith,
        Are you comparing first world with third world? What, you want SL to be like the Vatican?

        • 2
          1

          How come you come down to call “third world” only focusing on this matter ?

          In other context, you guys go on saying now “we are now mid income nation”… ha ha hu hu… Dont hurt your beloved leader.

          Srilanka will never achieve the level of any religious state, so long the bugger would stay in power. Now former Myanmar is gradually disspearing, instead another myanmar is emerging.

        • 1
          0

          `|first world with third world? What, you want SL to be like the Vatican?

          It’s nice gnawing your Bunny_Boiler_Syndrome.
          ______________

          Fish Filet,

          Failed to Fly`| …not to beee he he!

          ~k゜・_・゜k~ 

        • 0
          1

          In both worlds, we are comparing human beings, not animals with humans. It is the attitude and behavior. The politician’s in the third world are much richer than the politicians in the first world. Do you think Rajapakse family is poor?

  • 3
    7

    How safe is UK?

    Stratford in East London is UK’s worst crime spot – muggers, pickpockets and thieves.

    Westfield, Stratford City records 200 crimes per month – Scotland Yard has recorded 3,440 crimes in the area over the past 18 months, including 500 shoplifting offences, almost 300 violent crimes and hundreds of pick-pocketings and muggings.
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2389085/Britains-crime-hotspots-Astonishing-new-figures-identify-lawless-postcodes-country–zero-Londons-Westfield-Shopping-centres.html

    Glasgow ranks UK’s most dangerous area – http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-22276018

    Britain is the most violent country in Europe, worse than South Africa or US – http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1196941/The-violent-country-Europe-Britain-worse-South-Africa-U-S.html

    • 2
      2

      This is so true! Crimes against the person, racism and discrimination are rife. There are far too may of us going to the UK and finding out too late the truth about these things. Our government and local newspapers are not doing enough to warn our people of the dangers. We should boycott the commonwealth games in crime-ridden Glasgow, or failing that, IF we must go, we should send adequate numbers of our highly trained security staff with the sportsmen, to protect them from harm.

  • 1
    3

    Liar -Liar ,your Nickers are on fire.
    ——————————————-

    IN RESPONSE TO Senali THE IGNORANT ,( i LIVE IN THE UK STOP MAKING UP STORIES- IF i KNOW YOUR REAL ID i CAN GET THE GOVERNMENT TO SUE YOU )

    this IS Great Britain & not your Shitty Lanka , where you guys are famous to shit in the plate you use to eat .
    ————————————————————————-

    -BBS PROMOTED HATE HAS NOW BEEN IMPLEMENTED ISLAND WIDE, NO MUSLIM CAN BUY LAND ANYWHERE ,NOR RENT HOMES ,OR BUSINESS PREMISES , NO MUSLIM ALLOWED TO OPERATE HALAL RESTAURANTS , NO MUSLIMS CAN PAWN THEIR JEWELRY AT ANY LOCAL BANK EVEN FOR MEDICAL PURPOSES , PRIVATE HOSPITALS AND GOVERNMENT HOSPITALS TREAT MUSLIM PATIENTS WITH A LOT OF HOSTILITY .

    HOW TO ROB THE MUSLIMS
    ———————–

    ALL GOODS AND SERVICES TO MUSLIMS BY SINHALESE ARE ADDED WITH A HIDDEN COST CALLED TAKIYA TAX SERVICES OF 2.5 TO 15 % VARYING ON EACH GOODS & SERVICES.

    A FULL BOY-COT IS BEEN ORDERED BY BBS AGAINST ALL MUSLIM BUSINESS .

    MUSLIM MEN WHO INDULGE IN ALCOHOL- BE-AWARE EVERY SINGLE BAR , HOTELS & RESTAURANTS ARE TOLD TO SPIKE THE DRINKS WITH TOXIC TO DAMAGE THE BRAIN CELLS .

    BEWARE OF SURGERY ,( NOT VERY SURE TO CONFIRM ,BASED ON A RUMOR) WHEN MUSLIMS PATIENTS ARE OPERATED ,THEIR KIDNEYS ARE ROBBED AND MUSLIM WOMEN AND TEENAGE GIRLS ARE STERILIZED BY SINHALESE DOCTORS .

    • 4
      0

      U r really a lying monkey, [Edited out]

    • 2
      0

      NO, Lying Monkey! My many friends among our Muslim brethren tell me, emphatically, that they are still better off in Sri Lanka than anywhere else in the world. They live well and look after each other in the community. There is no destitution in the Muslim community in Sri Lanka. Yes, it is true that some of Muslim politicians take sides politically but that is what politics is about, anyway. Yes, there are some rabid pseudo Buddhists monks going around making a nuisance of themselves, but they are not widely supported. The Muslims of Sri Lanka ARE at home in this island and don’t need any EX-patriates to scare them with stories telling them how badly off they are. Lying Monkey, IF you are a true Sri Lankan, you should be back here helping to makes a great nation (on second thoughts, with your attitude stay there and be a brown sahib). Sunneth!

    • 3
      0

      Lying,
      Did you say shenali is ignorant? Explain or stop posting garbage!

  • 1
    2

    South Sri Lanka is not a safe place for Westerners to visit. Women tourists are targeted and convicts are enjoying a 5-star treatment inside the prison.

  • 2
    0

    Monkey

    Monkey is doing the monkey business here, if you not certain don’t come and tell bullshi…t here . England crime date everyone can access from internet

    this IS Great Britain & not your Shitty Lanka

    In the history not now , UK is another shit country in europe

  • 2
    0

    Is there racism in the UK, yes there is. There is racism everywhere, including Sri Lanka. But one reason for the racism and religious intolerance is the Muslim immigrants that knew full well that they were going to a Christian country but still demand that the populace and the government comply with Shariah laws. They claim tax benefits, public housing food and educational benefits and live very comfortably thank you very much. My suggestion to these people is, if you really want to live under Shariah laws go back to the shit holes you came from and pay your own rent, food bills and school fees.

  • 2
    1

    See how these corrupt western politicians lie? After failing to tame our government using UNHRC the hate mongers are trying to hit at the economy by trying to discourage western tourists visiting Sri Lanka. Expect the local agents and irresponsible opposition to repeat the same propaganda in the coming weeks.

    This is completely the opposite experience what decent ever increasing travelers from Europe tell us. Either they are lying or the corrupt British politicians are lying.

    • 0
      0

      You were fine with these “corrupt” Westerners when they were supporting GOSL for decades.

  • 2
    2

    eusense,Senali wrote to LW,

    Then why the hell you morons run to western countries to rub your assholes on alien brims? Your Jarapassa fool ran to London to give a lecture but the di-ass-pora kicked the bugger out with contempt! You are such a shameless pathetic nation.

    • 3
      1

      Silva,
      Be educated.

    • 0
      0

      Is Jarapakshe capable of giving a lecture ?

      Pig might fly ? Recalling the interview performances during CHOGM circus, he only noded his head with a frequenz of 2- 3/min.. that is all what we noticed there. So how come you say- he went to give a lecture ?

  • 1
    2

    British Government has taken good measurement to protect their people. There are radio stations in Sri Lanka broadcast news at start of every hour. Those foreigners can listen to them when they travel. Also they should use only public bus service because some private bus conductors cheat them with travel charges if you think it’s not fair ask from a local who sit next to you when conductor is not in the range that your conversation can listen, most of them tell truth. Avoid being in pettah private bus station at night 7 P. M. to 6 A. M. That place is deserted during that time even a local should not visit. Use bus station for state running buses that time duration. Most of the bus conductor of state running buses are friendly and never cheat passengers.

  • 2
    1

    UK & Rape
    In the 12 months to March 2013, there were about 10,000 recorded rapes of adults in England and Wales, and 6,000 recorded rapes of children, up from about 6,000 and 5,000 respectively in 2008/09.

    The average is 22 rapes recorded per 100,000 adults.

    The highest number of recorded adult rapes – 34.8 per 100,000 adult population – was in Northamptonshire. By contrast, the lowest figure was 9.8 per 100,000 adults in Durham.

    The highest recorded child rape rate was 106 per 100,000 in Humberside. Hertfordshire had the lowest at 28, against an average for England and Wales of 59.5 per 100,000.

    The number of recorded rapes of both adults and children has risen steadily since 2008.

    BBC NEWS
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-25964991

    Now you understand why we have tough visa regulations for Sri Lankans. They are there to protect you from all this.

    Next week, credit card crime in the UK.

  • 1
    3

    LOOK WHOZ LYING ………………

    Regime’s profusion of lies about new ‘LTTE’ exposed …

    2 days ago – Regime’s profusion of lies about new ‘LTTE’ exposed : murdered ‘LTTE ers’ were in Kokavil army camp – State media contradicts Army.

  • 0
    0

    And here starts the beginning of end of western tourists to Lanka.
    Come on Gota boy kill more,MR kill more and clash more !!

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