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US issues travel advisory; Chidambaram says India safe

US issues travel advisory; Chidambaram says India safe
PTI
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First Published: Thu, Jun 04 2009. 05 03 PM IST
Updated: Thu, Jun 04 2009. 05 03 PM IST
New Delhi: Claiming that India faces “high threat” from terrorism, the United States has asked its citizens to be vigilant, inviting a strong reaction from New Delhi, which asserted that the country is completely safe and such an advisory is not justified.
Home minister P Chidambaram said India is “safer than many other countries in the world” and New Delhi will try to persuade Washington to withdraw such an advisory.
“I don’t thing there is any justification for the advisory... India is a safe place,” he said.
Chidambaram was reacting to an ‘Urgent Warden Message´ posted on American Embassy website which cautioned American citizens in India.
“The United States Mission in India wishes to urgently remind all US citizens resident in or travelling to India that there is a high threat from terrorism throughout India,” the message said.
“As terror attacks are a serious and growing threat, US citizens are urged to always practice good security, including maintaining a heightened situational awareness and a low profile.
“Americans in India should be vigilant at all times and monitor local news reports and vary their routes and times in carrying out daily activities,” the message said.
The US advisory asked its nationals to consider the level of security present when visiting public places, including religious sites, or choosing hotels, restaurants, entertainment and recreation venues.
Commenting on the advisory, Chidambaram said the Ministry of External Affairs will be asked to speak to the United States to persuade them to withdraw the advisory.
“India is a completely safe country... India is a safe place, it is safer than many other countries in the world. Thousands of tourists come to India and we look forward to welcoming them,” he told reporters.
Asked whether the US was trying to hyphenate India and Pakistan, Chidambaram said, “Why should we jump to conclusions? We will try to find out why this advisory was issued, if at all it was issued.”
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First Published: Thu, Jun 04 2009. 05 03 PM IST
More Topics: US | Travel Advisory | Citizens | India | P Chidambaram |