Canada Condemns Violence and Offers Consular Advice to Canadians Regarding Syria

(No. 126 - April 24, 2011 - 12:15 a.m. ET) The Government of Canada is deeply concerned by reports of the use of violence by security forces against peaceful demonstrators in Syria, resulting in many deaths. Canada calls on the Government of Syria to exercise restraint and to respect the rights of the Syrian people to freedom of expression and assembly.

Canada urges the Government of Syria to engage in a genuine dialogue on democratic reforms with all groups in Syria and to accelerate the implementation of measures already announced.

Officials at the Embassy of Canada in Damascus are closely monitoring the security situation and stand ready to provide consular assistance to Canadian citizens as required.

The Government of Canada advises against all travel to Syria due to the unpredictable security situation. Canadians currently in Syria should consider leaving by commercial means while these are still available.

If they have not already done so, Canadians in Syria are strongly urged to register with the Registration of Canadians Abroad service at Foreign Affairs Travel Reports in order to receive the Government of Canada’s latest updates and advice.

The Government of Canada strongly urges Canadians in Syria to regularly consult the Travel Report for Syria at Foreign Affairs Travel Reports for up-to-date information on the situation.

Canadian citizens in Syria requiring emergency consular assistance should contact the Embassy of Canada in Damascus at (11) 611-6692, 611-6851 or 611-6870, or call Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada’s Emergency Operations Centre in Ottawa at 613-996-8885. They may also send an email to sos@international.gc.ca.

Friends and relatives in Canada seeking information on Canadian citizens believed to be in Syria should contact the Emergency Operations Centre by calling 1-800-387-3124 or by sending an email to sos@international.gc.ca.

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For further information, media representatives may contact:

Foreign Affairs Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
613-995-1874
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