Barmy Army not coming | The Daily Star
07:17 PM, September 14, 2016 / LAST MODIFIED: 07:21 PM, September 14, 2016

Barmy Army not touring on security grounds

The Barmy Army, a group of travelling England fans, has said it will not be following the team on tour in Bangladesh owing to prevailing security concerns. A statement on the group's website said that while the BCB had taken an interest in improving security for fans, the "measures do not yet go far enough to persuade us to go against FCO (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) advice."

The development came two days after England ODI captain Eoin Morgan and opening batsman Alex Hales said they would not be travelling to Bangladesh either, despite the ECB saying the tour would go ahead, following an assessment of the security measures in place.

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"Behind the scenes we have been liaising with the ECB and the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) and have now received advice from the latter," the Barmy Army said. "We have been supplied with a list of hotels in Dhaka and Chittagong that will receive protection from the Bangladesh Police and been told that England supporters will be afforded their own segregated area within the stadium.

"However on the issue of escorts to and from stadiums (where due to local traffic conditions supporters will be most vulnerable to attack), we have been supplied with the contact details of a private security company, the implication being that any extra security will have be at supporter's own expense. Whilst we are grateful that the BCB are taking an interest, we feel these measures do not yet go far enough to persuade us to go against FCO advice.

"It is a matter of great regret that we feel unable to endorse travel to Bangladesh. Those of us lucky enough to have visited this country on previous tours have lasting and fond memories of a warm welcome, friendly locals and wonderful food. Perhaps the greatest pleasure being able to mix freely with the general population, particularly in and around the stadiums. We were also able to wander and explore the teeming cities of Dhaka and Chittagong without fear. FCO advice specifically warns against such activities."

The concerns over security for England's tour of Bangladesh began after Dhaka, the nation's capital, suffered a terrorist attack in July that left many dead. Australia had also cancelled their tour to the country at the end of last year and had pulled out of the Under-19 World Cup this year due to security concerns.

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