As the season of spring breaks and summer vacations approaches, I ask for your assistance in alerting American students about the risks and consequences of reckless behavior while studying or traveling abroad.
Each year, many American students serve time in foreign jails or await trial in detention because they were unaware of the risks of using or possessing drugs while overseas. Many young Americans are also arrested in foreign lands because of inappropriate behavior associated with heavy drinking.
The State Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs is responsible for the protection and welfare of U.S. citizens abroad. But while U.S. consular officers can visit American citizens being held in foreign jails, they cannot get them released.
[Enclosed with this letter is] the State Department’s press release urging young Americans to act responsibly when they travel. Additional safety information can be viewed and downloaded from the Consular Affairs’ home page on the Internet at
Thank you for your cooperation.
Madeleine K. Albright
The Secretary of State