- Cautions its citizens to exercise “increased caution” in island nation
- Updated advisory likely due to protests planned for Independence Day celebration
New Zealand updated this week its travel advisory for its citizens who are looking to visit Sri Lanka, directing them to exercise increased caution.
Updating its advisory on February 1, the country placed Sri Lanka in level two of four. It pointed out that the New Zealanders should exercise increased caution in Sri Lanka, due to the impacts of the economic crisis, potential for civil unrest and risk of terrorism.
“We advise New Zealanders in Sri Lanka to avoid protests, demonstrations, political rallies and events, large crowds and queues. Comply with any instructions issued by the local authorities, including any curfews.
Monitor local and international media, review personal security plans and be aware of your surroundings,” the New Zealand government said in its update.
While it didn’t directly state the reason for the sudden issuing of a tightened advisory, it is likely Sri Lanka was placed in a higher risk category for travel due to the protest expected on the 75th Independence Day celebration. Several sections of the Sri Lankan community, including political parties, shared they would host black flags in protest of the planned Independence Day celebrations.
The Fort magistrate issued an order yesterday preventing any protest march or any person from entering Galle Face and surrounding areas today to disrupt the 75th Independence Day celebrations.