State Department: Albania - Travel Warning, September 22, 1998
Albania - Travel Warning
September 22, 1998
The Department of State warns against all travel to Albania because of
recent declarations by Islamic extremists against the United States and its
citizens, and because the overall security situation in Albania remains
unstable. U.S. citizens in Albania are urged to consider their personal
security situations, and, if appropriate, to leave Albania.
Given the possibility that the U.S. Embassy's personnel and facilities
in Tirana, Albania, could be among the targets of a terrorist attack, the
Department of State on Aug. 14 ordered the departure of Embassy personnel
in nonemergency positions and families of Embassy personnel, and later
further reduced its staff. As a result of reduced staff, the Embassy has
temporarily suspended normal consular operations and is able to offer only
emergency services to U.S. citizens.
On September 14, incidents of violence occurred in the center of
Tirana. Mobs commandeered armored personnel carriers and fired
automatic weapons at government buildings. Police returned fire.
Mobs attacked and occupied government buildings and looted shops.
Police stations in the towns of Lezha and Fieri have also been
attacked by mobs with automatic weapons.
There is no indication that these mobs targeted U.S. citizens. However,
the situation remains extremely volatile and the possibility exists that
there may be further incidents of violence in which Americans may be
caught. U.S. citizens still resident in Tirana are strongly advised to
avoid crowds and demonstrations at all costs. Americans should stay
indoors and limit travel to the minimum necessary. When moving around,
American citizens should exercise extreme caution. U.S. citizens elsewhere
in Albania should also exercise extreme caution, avoid demonstrations and
crowds, and stay indoors as much as possible. Americans in Albania are
strongly urged to register with the Embassy by phone, 355/42/32875, ext.
1620, or by fax, 355/42/32222. Americans are asked to inform the Embassy
should they depart Albania. For further information on travel to Albania
consult the Department's Consular Information Sheet on Albania.
This Travel Warning supersedes the Aug. 18
Travel Warning to update the security situation.