Travel warning: FCO issue warning for Britons heading to Turkey amid World War 3 fear

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As concerns grow around the potential of a World War 3 outbreak following a drone strike by the US which killed Iranian Military leader Major Qasem Soleimani, Britons are being warned about travel to affected areas. With Turkey laying on the borders of the tumultuous region, the FCO is urging all holidaying in the country to reconsider their plans.

Following a warning by Iran that they hope to seek “severe revenge” the FCO issued a series of updated travel warnings for Britons, with Turkey amongst them.

A statement by the FCO reads: “The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all travel to areas within 10 km of the border with Syria, except the city of Kilis.”

The FCO advises against all but essential travel to all other areas of Sirnak, Kilis (including Kilis city) and Hatay provinces; and the provinces of Diyarbakir, Tunceli and Hakkari.

Turkey is a popular tourist destination for British travellers, however, the growing threat of violence and terrorism could be a cause for concern for holidaymakers.

READ MORE: Turkey holidays: Britons issued travel warning as Turkey bombs Syria [FCO WARNING]

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Travel Warning: The FCO has issued a travel warning to tourists heading to Turkey (Image: Getty Images )

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Travel warning: The most dangerous places to travel (Image: International SOS)

The news comes after a targeted attack in Iran ordered by Donald Trump killed the Iranian military leader.

Soon after Iranian religious leader Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Khamenei unleashed a barrage of furious tweets in which he warned of “severe revenge”.

The news comes just two months after the FCO warned Britons about the risk of terrorism in the country as Turkish leaders launched a series of attacks on neighbouring Syria.

Social media was soon alight, with references to World War 3 trending in the wake of the news.

The updated FCO statement goes on to say: “Following the death of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani in a US strike in Baghdad on 3 January, British nationals in the region should remain vigilant and keep up to date with the latest developments, including via the media and this travel advice.”

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This latest travel warning comes just months after a prior warning, advising Britons about heightened tensions in the region due to a collision between Turkey and Syria.

In October, the FCO warned British holidaymakers: “Turkey is conducting a military operation in north-eastern Syria. This has led to heightened tensions in border regions, including cross-border rocket and mortar attacks into Turkey, close to the border.

“If you’re in provinces bordering Syria, you should remain extremely vigilant and keep up to date with developments via local media and this travel advice.”

Additionally, the country’s terrorism warning has shot up to “very likely”.

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FCO Travel: Turkey already has tensions with neighbouring Syria (Image: Getty Images)

“Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Turkey,” states the FCO.

“Terrorist groups, including Kurdish groups, Daesh (formerly referred to as ISIL) and far-left organisations, continue to plan and carry out attacks. Further attacks could be indiscriminate.

“Most attacks have taken place in the south-east of the country, and in Ankara and Istanbul.

“While there is a potential that citizens from western countries may be targets or caught up in attacks, particularly in the major cities, attacks are most likely to target the Turkish state, civilians and demonstrations. You should be vigilant, follow the advice of local security authorities.”

How do safety experts assess risks abroad?

The FCO works in partnership with Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre and the Security Service (MI5) using national security information to publish a series of safety warnings.

One of these includes the terror threat scale which is in place year-round to gauge how safe your favourite holiday hotspot is.

It does not have an expiry date and can change at any time.

Meanwhile, medical and travel security services company International SOS explain: “The travel security risk rating evaluates the threat posed to travellers and international assignees by political violence (including terrorism, insurgency, politically motivated unrest and war), social unrest (including sectarian, communal and ethnic violence) as well as violent and petty crime.

“Other factors, such as the robustness of the transport infrastructure, the state of industrial relations, the effectiveness of the security and emergency services and the country’s susceptibility to natural disasters are also considered where they are of sufficient magnitude to impact the overall risk environment for travellers.”

What should I do if I have a holiday planned in Turkey?

Britons are urged to follow the advice of both the FCO and any regional authorities if they are already overseas.

Keeping up to date on news and current affairs can be a good indicator of any impending incidents that could affect them.

However, terror attacks can be launched unexpectedly, and holidaymakers are advised to be cautious before moving ahead with plans.

If you have a holiday booked through a package holiday provider, seek advice from the relevant company.

Furthermore, many travel insurance providers offer specialist “terror coverage” for affected regions. Check with your provider to see if this is included in your holiday insurance package.

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