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State Department: Serbia-Montenegro - Travel Warning, October 27, 1998


Serbia-Montenegro - Travel Warning
October 27, 1998

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens against travel to Serbia-Montenegro. American citizens in Serbia-Montenegro should consider their personal security situation and depart the country if they deem it appropriate. Due to the failure of Belgrade authorities to comply fully with United Nations Security Council Resolution 1199 and the ongoing violence perpetrated by security forces against ethnic Albanians in Kosovo, members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) are prepared to take military action and issued an Activation Order to that effect on October 13. Implementation of the Activation Order has been held in abeyance by NATO, to give the Serbia-Montenegro government an opportunity to demonstrate appropriate and adequate forward movement regarding compliance with UNSCR 1199. While the government of Serbia-Montenegro has given assurances no retaliatory actions would be taken against U.S. citizens, given recent history in the region, the possibility exists for spontaneous reactions against U.S. citizens.

On October 15, the Department of State terminated ordered departure status at the U.S. Embassy in Belgrade and the Kosovo Diplomatic Observer Mission personnel so that personnel could return to their posts to provide services necessary to develop and verify the agreements reached between the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia-Montenegro) and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and NATO. On October 27, due to signs of substantial compliance with UNHCR 1199, the Department of State allowed the return to dependents of U.S. Embassy personnel to the country.

Both the police and Kosovo Liberation Army (UCK) are active in the region and each operates numerous checkpoints throughout Kosovo. There have been incidents at both kinds of checkpoints in which guards have fired at vehicles whose occupants did not obey their commands. Due to the potential for violence, the authority of the individuals operating these checkpoints should not be challenged.

No. 98-056

This supersedes the Travel Warning for Serbia-Montenegro dated October 17, 1998 to reflect the current security situation and note the Department of State's decision to allow the dependents of U.S. Embassy Belgrade personnel to return to Serbia-Montenegro.

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