FO calls for nationals to flee Syria

by Alister POOLE on April 26, 2011

The British Foreign Office has advised UK nationals to flee Syria after the latest wave of unrest in the country. Officials said the situation was deteriorating rapidly and that Brits should leave on commercial flights while they are still available.

In a statement, the FO warned that the time in which they can offer diplomatic support to UK citizens is limited as the Bashar al-Assad hard-line government continues its crackdown against protesters. At least 300 people have been killed – as many as 120 in two days last week alone – since the uprising began five weeks ago.

Although hundreds of Brits have already registered their presence at the UK Embassy, it is feared that many will fail to do so before the country goes into lockdown. The FO said on its website that if the situation worsens, it is ‘highly unlikely’ they would be able to provide the usual consular service to people still in Syria.

William Hague, the British Foreign Secretary, urged the Syrian government to respond to the “legitimate demands” of its people, while reiterating that UK nations should leave at once. He also called for plans to be made to evacuate the remaining citizens.

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