Sri Lanka has declared a state of emergency following a dramatic increase in violence against Muslims in Kandy, a town popular with tourists.

The Foreign Office has said that while there will be an increased military presence on the streets, it is not necessary to avoid travelling to the area.

Here is The Independent’s Travel Correspondent Simon Calder’s advice for those heading to the country.

President Maithripala Sirisena said the declaration would “empower” the country’s armed forces and police to respond to clashes.

The state of emergency will be in place for an initial ten days, a government spokesman said.

Following an emergency cabinet meeting it was decided that special measures would be enforced “to prevent the spread of communal riots”.

While the specific details of the state of emergency remain unclear, government spokesman Dayasiri Jayasekara hinted that it could include a temporary crackdown on the use of social media

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