The Department of State warns U.S. citizens of continuing threats from terrorist groups in Bangladesh and to consider the risks of travel to and throughout the country. The Department is updating this travel warning to reflect the change in the U.S. Embassy in Dhaka's status to "partially accompanied," effective August 24, 2017, allowing all adult family members of U.S. government personnel to remain in or return to Dhaka. Previously, only adult family members employed by the U.S. government were permitted to remain or return to Dhaka. Minor dependents are still prohibited from residing in Dhaka. The U.S. Embassy remains open and will provide all consular services. This travel warning replaces the travel warning dated January 5, 2017.
While Bangladeshi security forces continue to identify and counter terrorist elements, the Islamic State of Iraq and ash Sham (ISIS) and al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) persist in their efforts to plot and/or carry out terrorist attacks throughout the country. In March, two suicide bombing attempts occurred at Dhaka's Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport and an explosion in the city of Sylhet killed seven people. These incidents were the first notable attacks since July 1, 2016, when terrorists killed more than 20 people, including one U.S. citizen, in a restaurant frequented by foreigners in Dhaka's diplomatic enclave.
In October 2016, ISIS threatened to target "expats, tourists, diplomats, garment buyers, missionaries, and sports teams" in the most "secured zones" in Bangladesh. Recurring threats and periodic terrorist activities have prompted the Embassy to require U.S. government personnel in Bangladesh to live, work, and travel under strict security guidelines. The internal security policies of the U.S. Mission in Bangladesh may be changed or adjusted at any time and without advance notice.
U.S. government officials and their adult family members are not permitted to travel on foot, motorcycle, bicycle, rickshaw, or other uncovered means on public thoroughfares and sidewalks in Bangladesh. In addition, U.S. government officials and their family members remain severely restricted in their ability to visit public establishments and places or to attend large gatherings in Bangladesh. U.S. citizens should take stringent security measures, remain vigilant, and be alert to local security developments.
Source: Overseas Security Advisory Council