March 24, 2011
Australian Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd on Thursday expressed concerns about deteriorating security situations in Yemen and Syria.
On late Wednesday, at least two Yemeni anti-government protesters were shot dead and nine others were injured by gunshots of government backers, after the latter caused a blackout at the site of the protest in Yemen's southern province of Taiz.
Rudd said that the Australian government is "gravely concerned" about the developments over there.
He said prolonged political instability in Yemen could create fertile ground for terrorist organizations to flourish.
Meanwhile, Rudd said the government was also deeply concerned about developments in Syria, where 12 Syrians have been killed in clashes between the security forces and protesters in the southern town of Daraa. Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade urged Australians not to travel to Yemen. It also called on Australians to exercise a high degree of caution in Syria.