Rioting broke out in the Albanian capital when hundreds of people tried to enter a foreign embassy, and an unspecified number of people were wounded, the Albanian government said Tuesday. The Greek government said there were reports of deaths.
Western diplomats said about 200 refugees had sought sanctuary in foreign embassies since late last week in an apparent attempt to flee Albania's repressive regime.A statement by the official Albanian news agency ATA said 300 to 400 people, including "vagabonds, former prisoners . . . as well as some deceived adolescents," tried to enter a foreign embassy in Tirana, the capital, Monday night.
They clashed with "forces of order," throwing stones, bricks and breaking shop windows, and some people "were slightly wounded," it said.
The Greek government released a statement saying: "According to other reports which have been impossible to confirm up to now, shots were heard last night, and it is rumored that there were victims among the population."
The Albanian news agency said: "With the immediate interference of the forces of order and the working people of the capital, the persons who violated order and tranquility dispersed. There were slightly wounded on both parties." A number had been detained, it said.