President and EU Ambassador to Albania exchange comments regarding local elections

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times July 3, 2019 19:48

President and EU Ambassador to Albania exchange comments regarding local elections

Story Highlights

  • Meta addressed a number of questions to Ambassador Soreca, concerning whether he had really been in favor of earlier dialogue between the parties and why he had not supported the president’s decision to cancel the elections’ date.

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TIRANA, July 3 – Following open attacks on the international community and claims the June 30 local elections were manipulated, President Ilir Meta engaged in direct dialogue with Ambassador of the European Delegation, Luigi Soreca, and his comments on the need for both political sides to start cooperating.

Soreca also stressed that the electoral reform should resume rapidly, and underlined that the implementation of the justice reform is irreversible. 

Meta addressed a number of questions to Ambassador Soreca, concerning whether he had really been in favor of earlier dialogue between the parties and why he had not supported the president’s decision to cancel the elections’ date.

In his Facebook post, Soreca did not mention Meta’s latest public statements on Tuesday, when he said the elections were manipulated and that the international community turned a blind eye to what is happening in Albania, including the prolonged justice reform, but it seems his assessments were a straightforward reaction to Meta’s allegations. 

“It is time for the Albanian government, the opposition and the institutions to show maturity and urgently engage in dialogue to overcome the current political situation. It is also time to move forward with the rule of law reforms,” writes Soreca.

Soreca also emphasized that “the cross-party work on electoral reform must resume rapidly. All Albanian institutions and political leaders should focus their efforts on these goals, in the framework of the important decision of the European Council in October.”

Shortly after the publication of his comments, Meta personally addressed Soreca with a series of questions, where he sought to know whether Mr Soreca was really interested in the dialogue between the parties, and asked if he had taken any concrete initiatives in this regard and why he did not seek the support of the Albanian president.

Meta also seemed to be critical of why his decision to cancel the election date was not supported, or the subsequent decree on the new date on October 13, asking what the ambassador’s position was regarding this date although the international community clearly lined up in favor of holding elections on the date set for June 30. 

However, Meta cited the position of two members of the German Bundestag who proposed postponing the election date as an opportunity to open the dialogue.

Meta further said he had made his remarks regarding the work of the EU Delegation in Albania clear to Soreca since he assumed office, consisting of his belief the delegation had not done its maximum to initiate dialogue between the parties. 

During his statement on Tuesday, Meta spoke harshly concerning the implementation of the justice reform which, according to him, was diverted by Prime Minister Edi Rama, while reiterating the allegations of political stances held by the European mission Euralius. 

Meta said he will resume this issue at a later moment, while Soreca wrote that “implementation of the justice reform continues and is irreversible. The focus is now the creation of SPAK and the restoration of the functionality of the Constitutional Court. Once the rigorous re-evaluation process is completed, SPAK will enable Albania to further enhance the fight against corruption and organized crime, while the Court will clarify all outstanding issues regarding constitutional rights, including election issues.”

Soreca also stressed that “the fight against corruption must continue on a daily basis. The prosecution should investigate any suspected corruption form, including electoral violations and vote-buying, pursuant to existing law.”

 

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times July 3, 2019 19:48