Security Message for U.S. Citizens: November 17th Demonstrations

The U.S. Embassy in Athens informs U.S. citizens of the potential for large demonstrations throughout Greece on Tuesday, November 17.  Demonstrations are expected in the vicinity between Syntagma Square and the U.S. Embassy in the center of Athens, in the area of the U.S. Consulate General in Thessaloniki, and on and near university campuses nationwide.  U.S. citizens should avoid these areas on November 17 after 2 pm. U.S. citizens seeking consular services on November 17 should be aware that the U.S. Embassy in Athens and the Consulate General in Thessaloniki will close at 2 pm (or earlier, should circumstances warrant).

November 17 is the anniversary of the 1973 protests against the then-ruling junta.  In the past, some demonstrations commemorating this date turned violent, and led to the destruction of property.  Exercise caution and common sense:  avoid the areas of demonstrations, and if you find yourself too close to a demonstration, move in the opposite direction and seek shelter.  Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and possibly escalate into violence.

Traffic and public transportation around the demonstrations will likely be disrupted.  We encourage all U.S. citizens to review their personal security plans, remain aware of their surroundings, including local events, monitor local news stations for updates, and report specific incidences of targeted violence to the U.S. Embassy in Athens or the U. S. Consulate General in Thessaloniki at the numbers below.  U.S. citizens should maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance their personal security.

For further information:

  • See the State Department’s travel website for the Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Greece Country Specific Information.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Email the U.S. Embassy in Athens
  • In case of an emergency, contact the U.S. Embassy in Athens, located at91 Vasilisis Sophias Avenue, at (+30) 210-720-2414, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m, Monday through Friday. The after-hours emergency number for U.S. citizens is (+30) 210-729-4444.
  • If you are a U.S. citizen in the Thessaloniki district with an emergency during office hours, contact the U.S. Consulate General in Thessaloniki by telephone at (+30) 231-024-2905; after hours, contact the U.S. Embassy in Athens at (+30) 210-729-4444.
  • Call +1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or +1-202-501-4444 from other countries from8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
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