Greece on Tuesday issued a travel advisory for citizens traveling to FYROM.
The advisory came after an incident Sunday night FYROM in which a group of some 20-30 people attacked three Greek tourist coaches in downtown Ohrid as they were waiting for Greek holidaymakers to return from a tour, which was condemned by the Athens government.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Mr. G. Koumoutsakos has issued the following announcement:
The Foreign Ministry informs Greek citizens who wish to travel to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia - whether for a stay or in transit, for professional or personal reasons - that they may experience problems.
Reasons for this include the following:
A. The negative climate that has been created with regard to our country during the past year has provoked the abuse of persons - usually drivers - and attacks on and damage to cars with Greek license plates.
B. Local legislation and procedural regulations, including those regarding:
· transit hauling,
· leaving the country with over 2,000 in foreign currency, unless the currency was declared on entry into the country, and
· traffic regulations, are very strictly enforced by the authorities in FYROM with regard to Greek citizens, in blatant abuse of authority and with disproportionate consequences.
It should also be borne in mind that FYROM legislation changes constantly and without any previous notification of the public or interested professional groups.
The competent Greek authorities have observed cases of the above, particularly in recent months.
Greek citizens are encouraged to familiarize themselves in a timely manner regarding the regulations in effect in FYROM, to comply with them carefully and, mainly, to exercise caution and prudence regarding their safety and that of their property during their stay in, or journey through, FYROM.
The Greek diplomatic and consular missions in the country are at the disposal of Greek citizens to provide clarifications or assistance in the case of an unpleasant incident.