Albania's Defense Ministry says artillery shells that are believed to have been looted from army depots more than two decades ago have turned up by a river.

The ministry said in a statement Saturday that about 100 rusty artillery shells were found on riverbanks in the central city of Elbasan. The statement says authorities think the shells are from the army depots looted during civil unrest in 1997.

The ministry says a farmer also found a World War II-era bomb in another part of Albania.

Explosives experts rushed to move the shells and bomb for safe disposal.

Albania, a NATO member since 2009, has destroyed tens of thousands of tons of ammunition and weapons but military grade weapons still remain in people's possession or lie buried unnoticed.