US expands travel warning amid violence in Syria

By REUTERS
August 6, 2011 03:44






WASHINGTON - Americans in Syria are encouraged to leave and travel to the country should be postponed, the US State Department said on Friday following widespread violence that has pitted thousands of protesters against the government.




The State Department warned that given the "ongoing uncertainty and volatility" US citizens are urged to leave immediately while transportation is still available. The advisory also encouraged Americans who remain to limit any nonessential travel within the country.




The advisory expands a travel warning issued in late April that ordered eligible family members of US government employees and certain non-emergency personnel to leave.




Syrian security forces on Friday killed at least 18 protesters in attacks on tens of thousands of protesters who poured into the streets to demonstrate against the rule of President Bashar Assad on the first Friday of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.



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