London, England 3rd July 2016: The ECB has said it will follow government advice on their scheduled tour to Bangladesh, following Friday night’s terrorist attack in Dhaka which left 20 people dead.
The board said it will “work closely” with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and their own security experts over the coming months in deciding whether the tour, which is due to start on September 30, will go ahead. Last year, Australia had postponed their tour of Bangladesh based on government security advice. And earlier this year, Australia had pulled out of the Under-19 World Cup that was hosted by Bangladesh.
Gunmen stormed the Holey Artisan Bakery cafe in the Gulshan district of Dhaka late on Friday before security forces brought it to an end 12 hours later.
An ECB spokesman said: “The safety and security of our players and management is always of paramount importance to ECB and this applies to all teams representing England on overseas tours.
“We will continue to monitor and assess the situation in Bangladesh over the coming weeks and months and will undertake a thoroughgoing and robust pre-tour inspection of planned security arrangements for the England team.
“We will also continue to work closely with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office [FCO] and should our Director of Security, Reg Dickason, or the FCO, advise that the environment is not acceptably safe or the right measures not in place, we would take the appropriate steps.”
After the attack, the FCO added an update to their travel advice page: “Following the incident in the Gulshan 2 area of Dhaka we advise you to remain vigilant and follow the advice of the local security authorities. Until further notice we specifically advise against visiting areas where foreign nationals are known to congregate such as public areas of International Hotels, large supermarkets, restaurants and clubs.”
England are set to play three ODIs and two Tests on the month-long tour across Dhaka and Chittagong.
In 2008, England returned from India following the terror attacks in Mumbai but went back to the country to play two Test matches in Chennai and Mohali.