Political unrest in Sri Lanka

October 29, 2018 5:50 pm

What’s happening?

Sri Lanka’s President Maithripala Sirisena unexpectedly named his predecessor, Mahinda Rajapaksa, as the country’s new prime minister. Rajapaksa is replacing Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe, in what opponents say is an unconstitutional move. There are a reports of that this prompted protests around Sri Lanka, mostly in the capital city of Colombo.

Our Resident Director in Sri Lanka, Tudor Silva, confirmed that all students are safe and accounted for in Peradeniya. Classes and programming are running as scheduled. Our Resident Director asked all students to remain in the area of Peradeniya and Kandy for the time being. Students are reminded to stay clear of any protests or demonstrations.

We will continue to closely monitor security events and provide you with relevant updates as needed.

What IFSA is doing

IFSA’s full-time Health and Safety team maintain a close watch on security events in Sri Lanka and all of our programs. IFSA adheres to the health, safety, security and risk management guidelines and best practices in the field of international education as established by NAFSA and the Forum on Education Abroad. We consult regularly with governmental agencies and private sector resources, as well as other safety and security professionals in the field of international education. This broad network allows us to remain well-informed and up to date on best practices.

IFSA’s Health and Safety team works with the resident staff in each host country to ensure students are accounted for and receive the proper support and care. Additionally, the team is constantly monitoring international news and governmental reports in order to assess worldwide security conditions and respond quickly in the event of an emergency. Resident Directors guide students through safety practices and consistently check in, providing any information and support that is needed. Students are given an emergency phone number for our resident staff and our emergency assistance provider that they can call 24/7.

More Information

If you would like more information about this security event, please see the following media outlets:

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-45991919

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-sri-lanka-politics/turmoil-in-sri-lanka-as-ex-president-rajapaksa-sworn-in-as-pm-idUSKCN1N02NA

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/10/sri-lanka-president-sacks-prime-minister-appoints-rajapaksa-181026174208405.html