Updated: On April 26, 2019, the Department of State ordered the departure of all school-age family members of U.S. government employees in Kindergarten through 12th grade. The Department also authorized the voluntary departure of non-emergency U.S. government employees and family members.
On April 21, the State Department increased the Travel Advisory for Sri Lanka to Level 2 (Exercise Increased Caution) after multiple attacks throughout the country. Explosions reportedly occurred at the Shangri La, Cinnamon Grand and Kingsbury hotels in Colombo and churches in Kochchikade, Katuwapitiya and Batticaloa; the blasts killed 290 people and wounded 500. Arrests have been made and investigations are ongoing according to media reports.
The Advisory says in part:
Exercise increased caution in Sri Lanka due to terrorism. Terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in Sri Lanka. Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting tourist locations, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, local government facilities, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, parks, major sporting and cultural events, educational institutions, airports, and other public areas.
The U.S. Embassy in Colombo also announced that it will be closed to the public on April 22. The American Center in Colombo & all American Spaces will also be closed. Emergency American Citizen Services will be available (see contact number below). In a statement to the press, the secretary of state confirmed that “several U.S. citizens were among those killed” in Sri Lanka attacks,
— U.S. Embassy Colombo (@USEmbSL) April 21, 2019
Deeply saddened by the senseless attacks in Sri Lanka today. Our thoughts are with the victims and their families. We stand with Sri Lanka’s people at this terrible moment.
— Ambassador Teplitz (@USAmbSLM) April 21, 2019
More than 200 people (including as many as 30 foreigners) were killed when explosions ripped through Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday in the worst episode of violence the country has seen since the end of their civil war a decade ago pic.twitter.com/11GwBwIrcH
— TicToc by Bloomberg (@tictoc) April 21, 2019
— BBC News Sinhala (@bbcsinhala) April 21, 2019