At approximately 0700 local time (0130 UTC) on 18 July 2022, interim President Ranil Wickremesinghe declared a nationwide state of emergency effective immediately amid continued protests throughout the country calling for the president’s resignation. The state of emergency allows the president to authorize the detention of any citizen and to change or suspend any laws. It also gives police officers authority to search any premises. The latest emergency declaration follows a separate state of emergency declaration implemented on 13 July in response to a spike in unrest after former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa fled the country without officially resigning from office.