US Statement Department Warns Americans to Stay Far from Its Strategic Ally, Albania

The US Department of State published on Tuesday a notice for all US citizens who want to travel to Albania. They are warned of two issues: COVID-19 and rising crime in Lazarat, southern Albania.

“Reconsider travel to Albania due to COVID-19.  Exercise increased caution in Albania due to crime,” said the announcement.

In addition, it said that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Travel Health Notice for Albania due to COVID-19, indicating a high level of COVID-19 in the country. “Your risk of contracting COVID-19 and developing severe symptoms may be lower if you are fully vaccinated with an FDA authorized vaccine. Before planning any international travel, please review the CDC’s specific recommendations for fully vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers.”

In the meantime, the State Department warns US citizens about the ‘Lazarat-Exercise Increased Caution’. Below is the full text of the number two announcement: “The security situation in Lazarat remains volatile due to crime and violence associated with marijuana cultivation. Local police have limited ability to protect and assist travelers. The U.S. government is unable to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in Lazarat as U.S government employees are prohibited from traveling there.”

The U.S. Department of State does not seem to be very coherent with the information it receives about different countries of the world, specifically about Albania. In the slightly contradictory announcement, State Department informs the American citizens to be careful for those who travel to Albania, not only because of COVID-19, which indisputably has affected every country, but also reminds Lazarat, that for the sake of truth for years, has been out of attention not only politically, but also in the media.

The village known for drug cultivation has since 2014 been removed from the map of areas planting cannabis. The Department says the security situation there is volatile and local police have disabilities to protect passengers.

Although the State Department has time left for marijuana of Lazarat (we are talking about Lazarat a few years ago), it seems that it has not been updated with the information of hundreds of tons of cocaine that are occasionally caught in containers with bananas coming from Latin America to Albania (!)

The State Department reminds US citizens to be careful also in the face of crime in Albania, precisely in this country which has become a guarantor for the reception of 3000 Afghans, who are neither more nor less but close associates of America itself in Afghanistan. No one knows their CVs and what they represent and no one says if they constitute a threat to Albanian citizens. Likewise, no mention is made of the presence of more than 3000 Mujahedeens located on the suburbs of Tirana. They are known for their terrorist past and effort to overthrow the government in Teheran from Albania.

The strange announcements and non-announcements about a friendly country and strategic partner of the US shows how far the two countries are from each other, as far as the information gets late to the State Department, or the US Embassy in Tirana is too busy to be taken seriously with Albania. / argumentum.al