Foreign missions advise citizens to exercise caution in DhakaPublished By: 24newsmedia
Foreign diplomatic missions based in Bangladesh have issued advisories warning their citizens to exercise caution in Dhaka. The move comes in the wake of an unprecedented hostage situation arising at a café in the Gulshan diplomatic area.
Two policemen were killed and 20 more were injured when gunmen stormed the Holey Artisan Bakery, firing shots and exploding bombs and shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’ – the God is the greatest.
At least 20 people were reportedly being held hostage as police cordoned off the entire diplomatic zone. The radical Islamic State (ISIL) reportedly claimed responsibility for the attack.
The US embassy, in its advisory soon after the incident unfolded at around 9pm, said there had been “a shooting and hostage situation reported at Holey Bakery in Gulshan 2, Dhaka. Please shelter in place and monitor all news sources for further developments.”
A State Department spokesperson, responding to a question at a press briefing in Washington, however, said that it was too early to say who was involved in a hostage situation or what the motivation might be.
But John Kirby, the spokesperson, confirmed that all Americans working at the US mission in Dhaka had been accounted for. "We have accounted for all Americans working for the chief of mission authority" he said.
The British High Commission in its advisory said: “There are reports of a firearms incident in the Gulshan 2 area of Dhaka. The incident may be ongoing. If you are in the area you should remain vigilant and follow the advice of the local security authorities.”
The Australian government advised its citizens to exercise "a high degree of caution".
In a travel advisory it said: “The incident is ongoing. Avoid the area and monitor the media for further updates. If you are in the area, remain vigilant and follow the advice of local authorities."