US issues travel alert for Europe, citing threat of terrorist attacks


WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. State Department issued a travel alert for Europe on Monday, saying U.S. citizens should be aware of a continued threat of terrorist attacks throughout the continent.

In the alert, the State Department cited recent incidents in France, Russia, Sweden and the United Kingdom and said Islamic State and al Qaeda "have the ability to plan and execute terrorist attacks in Europe."

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Truck driven into crowd in Sweden
Emergency servies work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND / ALTERNATIVE CROP (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
People react at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / TT News Agency / Andreas Schyman / Sweden OUT (Photo credit should read ANDREAS SCHYMAN/AFP/Getty Images)
People were killed when a truck crashed into department store Ahlens on Drottninggatan, in central Stockholm, Sweden April 7, 2017. TT News Agency/Rose-Marie Otter/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. SWEDEN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SWEDEN. NO COMMERCIAL SALES.
Emergency services work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / TT NYHETSBYR� AND TT News Agency / Fredrik SANDBERG / Sweden OUT (Photo credit should read FREDRIK SANDBERG/AFP/Getty Images)
Police cordons the truck which crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
Emergency servies work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
Emergency servies work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
Police officers work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
Police officers work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, on April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / TT NYHETSBYR� AND TT News Agency / Noella Johansson / Sweden OUT (Photo credit should read NOELLA JOHANSSON/AFP/Getty Images)
Police officers work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
A truck have crashed into a department store Ahlens at Drottninggatan in the central of Stockholm, Sweden April 7, 2017. TT News Agency/Andreas Schyman/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - 
Special Police forces work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
Three people killed in incident when a truck was driven Friday April 7 2017 into a department store in central Stockholm, Sweden April 7, 2017. TT News Agency/Andreas Schyman/
Three people killed in incident when a truck was driven Friday April 7 2017 into a department store in central Stockholm, Sweden April 7, 2017. TT News Agency/Andreas Schyman/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. SWEDEN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SWEDEN. NO COMMERCIAL SALES.
Police officers work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / TT News Agency / Noella JOHANSSON / Sweden OUT (Photo credit should read NOELLA JOHANSSON/AFP/Getty Images)
Police officers stand in the centre of Stockholm, Sweden, April 7, 2017. REUTERS/Ilze Filks
Police officers work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / TT News Agency / Noella JOHANSSON / Sweden OUT (Photo credit should read NOELLA JOHANSSON/AFP/Getty Images)
Police officers work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / TT News Agency / Jessica GOW / Sweden OUT (Photo credit should read JESSICA GOW/AFP/Getty Images)
Police officers work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
Armed police operates at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
Police officers work at the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
Police officers guard at the downtown in Stockholm, Sweden, April 7, 2017. REUTERS/Magnus Strom
Police cordon off the truck which crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND / ALTERNATIVE CROP (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
People were killed when a truck crashed into department store Ahlens on Drottninggatan, in central Stockholm, Sweden April 7, 2017. TT News Agency/Noella Johansson/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. SWEDEN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SWEDEN. NO COMMERCIAL SALES.
People were killed when a truck crashed into department store Ahlens on Drottninggatan, in central Stockholm, Sweden April 7, 2017. TT News Agency/Noella Johansson/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. SWEDEN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SWEDEN. NO COMMERCIAL SALES.
A policeman cordons the site whre a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Jonathan NACKSTRAND (Photo credit should read JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images)
People were killed when a truck crashed into department store Ahlens on Drottninggatan, in central Stockholm, Sweden April 7, 2017. TT News Agency/Jessica Gow/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. SWEDEN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SWEDEN. NO COMMERCIAL SALES.
The crowd is seen near to the scene where a truck crashed into the Ahlens department store at Drottninggatan in central Stockholm, April 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / TT News Agency / Noella Johansson / Sweden OUT (Photo credit should read NOELLA JOHANSSON/AFP/Getty Images)
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The State Department's previous travel alert for Europe, issued ahead of the winter holiday season, expired in February. A State Department official said Monday's alert was not prompted by a specific threat, but rather recognition of the continuing risk of attacks especially ahead of the summer holidays. The alert expires on Sept. 1.

Malls, government facilities, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, parks, airports and other locations are all possible targets for attacks, the State Department's alert said.

(Reporting by Yeganeh Torbati; editing by Diane Craft)

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