U.S. Ambassador Pamela Harriman was hospitalized Monday with an undetermined illness, an embassy spokesman said.
U.S. government sources in Washington, however, said the 76-year-old ambassador had suffered a stroke. The sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said her condition was serious.
The embassy spokesman, Chris Snow, said Harriman fell ill Monday night at the Ritz Hotel, which is near the embassy. He said she was taken to the American Hospital in Neuilly, a northwestern Paris suburb.
“Doctors are evaluating and treating her,” Snow said early today. He said the exact nature of her illness would be determined later in the day.
Harriman, who has not had a history of health problems, has been ambassador since spring 1993. She was preparing to leave her post by midyear.
Harriman won respect in Paris as someone with the high-level contacts to short-circuit Washington red tape in a crisis. She has mediated disputes over trade, Bosnia, NATO, the Middle East and CIA spying.
The daughter of a British baron, Harriman was married to Winston Churchill’s son Randolph; “Sound of Music” producer Leland Hayward; and New York governor and ex-ambassador Averell Harriman.