The UK Foreign Office today revised its travel advice for the Solomon Islands. It is now advising against all but essential travel due to civil unrest in the country.
The travel advice summary now reads:
“We advise against all but essential travel to the Solomon Islands due to civil unrest in Honiara. Following the announcement of the new Prime Minister to the Solomon Islands on 18 April 2006, there has been wide scale violence including the burning down of buildings and physical attacks.
“If you are currently resident in or travelling to the Solomon Islands, you should thoroughly review available information on the local situation, and follow local advice. You should exercise caution and avoid public gatherings and crowds, particularly in the city centre, eastern and Chinatown areas of Honiara.
“The Australian Government has agreed to facilitate voluntary departures for nationals of other countries from Honiara. You should read the Australian travel advice at http://www.smartraveller.gov.au/zw-cgi/view/TravelBulletins/ Solomon_Islands-departure_flights which gives more details of this.
You should stay in close contact with the British High Commission and inform them of any travel plans. You should also ensure that you follow the latest travel and safety advice.
“The Solomon Islands is in the Pacific “Ring of Fire” and subject to earthquakes.
“If against our advice you decide to travel, you should contact the British High Commission in Honiara on arrival for latest advice on the security.
“The threat from terrorism in the Solomon Islands is low. But you should be aware of the global risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks which could be against civilian targets, including places frequented by foreigners.
“We strongly recommend that you obtain comprehensive travel and medical insurance before travelling. You should check any exclusions, and that your policy covers you for the activities you want to undertake. Please see: Travel Insurance. “