Fainting in Coyles An occasional letter from the
Heart of Euroville
Friday, March 28, 2003
Latest News from The Foriegners Office
Worldwide Travel Warning: The risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks in public places, including tourist sites, will be especially high during military action in Iraq. You should be vigilant, take sensible precautions, be aware of local sensibilities, monitor the media, and check our Travel Advice for the country you live in or plan to visit.
Nothing Strange there, though I am suprised that they don't suggest the wearing of sensible shoes and pretending to be Irish - everybody loves the Irish.
The vast majority of visits are trouble-free. Visitors should be alert to the dangers of street crime in the cities. Belgium shares with the rest of the world, including the UK, an increased threat from terrorist incidents of international origin.
There is no recent history of terrorism in Belgium. The Belgian government has to date exercised a strong and effective counter-terrorism policy. We do not have information of any specific treat to western or to British interests from terrorism in Belgium, but the area round Brussels in particular hosts a number of international institutions (EU, NATO) which might be seen as attractive targets to terrorists. You should be vigilant in these areas, in public places and areas frequented by tourists. All British institutions and businesses should review their security arrangements.
However the Queen's visit last week was cancelled on the grounds of "Security concerns" so those of us that live here better watch out. As I walked to work this morning, looking every inch the Brit (well live the stereotype I say) I was spat at and jostled for being an "agressor anglais" or something like that. I wasn't going to folow the fellow into his cafe where Al-jazeera was palying full blast to find out the precise terms. Maybe my idea to hang an 'In My Name' banner off my balcony to compansate for the rainbow PACE banners fluttering around the communeis not such a good idea. For that matter hanging a union jck there for next weeks Turkey match might not be too bright either.
Back to the FO
France: The vast majority of visits to France are trouble-free. You should be alert to the dangers of car and street crime in cities. France shares with the rest of the world, including the UK, an increased threat from terrorist incidents of international origin.
There have been no terrorist attacks on mainland France since the bombing of the Paris Metro in 1995. You should, however, be aware of the risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks, in all countries of the world, against civilian targets in public places, including tourist sites. Although we are not aware of any specific threat to western or to British interests from terrorism in France, we believe there is an increased general threat to visibly British institutions and organisations from global terrorism in France, as there is in all other countries in Europe. Against this background, UK nationals should be vigilant in public places and areas frequented by tourists
The attack on the chemical plant in Tolouse seems to have been forgotten. There again who needs terrorists ahen armed gangs patrol the peripherique carrying out attcks on police stations with RPGs. After the Vile ones refusal to articulate any support for the coalitions armed forces, implying that he and France believe that there is some moral equvilance between the two sides in this war, I am suprised that there is no threat to 'British or Western interests from terrorists in France'. It's not so much the terrorists that are the danger it is the french state itself.