14/05/2003

Foreign Office warns Britons to stay away from Saudi

British nationals should avoid travelling to Saudi Arabia in the wake of Monday's suicide bombings which devasted residential compounds and a office in the kingdom's capital Riyadh.

The Foreign Office issued travel advice for Saudi Arabia warning against all but essential travel. The government has also advised British nationals already in Saudi Arabia to take "all necessary steps to protect their safety".

An earlier series of bombings in Saudi Arabia in November 2000 has killed and injured British nationals and other Westerners. Also, a British national was recently shot and killed at traffic lights in Riyadh.

The Foreign Office said that in light of this and Monday's outrage, they were pulling out all non-essential staff from Saudi Arabia.

Those remaining in Saudi Arabia were cautioned to follow news reports and be alert to developments in the region. They should also asked to be vigilant, particularly in public places frequented by foreigners such as hotels, restaurants and shopping malls.

“Adopting a low profile and minimising travel in the country is advised, along with sensible precautions for personal and vehicle safety,” a spokesperson said.

The US administration has also announced the withdrawal all non-essential personnel from Saudi Arabia.

The American administration has also announced the withdrawal all non-essential US personnel from Saudi Arabia.

(SP)

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