Team 15 is safe: Far from impact area in Sri Lanka
We were all at our worksites today when news about the attacks started coming through. At this point with the excellence of western media, most people will know all the details. It is clear that the attacks are targeted and well coordinated. Right now, the government appears to know who is responsible and has captured some people and this is key to calming the situation down.
We are very fortunate that we have excellent contacts here in Tangalle who have worked with us and been very good friends for 14 years. They will advise and care for us like family.
We have received updates from the Canadian Embassy which has put Sri Lanka in the second highest level of alert but it has not issued a travel ban as yet. We have also been in frequent contact with Developing World Connections and together are on top of the situation.
A curfew has been put in place. Rail and domestic flights cancelled. Schools closed and likely businesses will be tomorrow. Social media is shut down. This would seem drastic to us from Canada but it is how Sri Lanka would respond to any and all violent situations of a national nature. They want to keep people inside while they pursue the terrorists.
As advised by the embassy, barring further incident, our plan of action is as follows:
•Stay calm and avoid the affected area – we are far away from it anyway
•Limit our movements and be aware of our surroundings at all times
•Follow the instructions of local authorities
•Monitor local media to stay informed of the evolving situation
We are cancelling all plans for extended trips after Wednesday (our scheduled end date). Most of us fly on Thursday and we remain prepared to travel at any time if necessary.
We are working closely with the travel agent to ensure that our current flight arrangements remain intact and that those travelling after Thursday can try and get booked sooner. At this stage it doesn’t make sense to try and leave as we expect the airport will be mobbed.
We will continue to post on our blog http://bit.ly/tripcablog with any changes in circumstance.
Our hearts and thoughts are with the many people directly and terribly affected by the tragic events of today.
Janet McKelvey,TRIP Canada Program Manager
Joshua Molsberry, Executive Director Developing World Connections