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Parliament fails to pass lustration law
TIRANA, Dec 16 – Following many hours of debate, though most of it without the presence of the opposition, the parliament decided to postpone voting for the lustration law next week.

The lustration law sought to purge public posts from persons linked to the former communist secret police.

The Democratic Party dominates the 140-seat parliament and could pass the law with a simply majority, or half-plus-one of the existing numbers of parliamentarians.

However, they decided to postpone the vote until next Monday, as they seek a larger consensus.

The draft law stated that all persons linked to the former secret police, Sigurimi, from November 1944 when Albania was liberated from the Nazi occupiers until December 1990 when political pluralism was declared, cannot remain in public posts.
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Albania again to consider electoral code legislation
TIRANA, Dec 16 - Albania’s parliament agreed to create a commission to again deal with the electoral code for the 2009 elections after the country’s president refused to sign the legislation into law. In explaining his decision, President Bamir Topi said the original draft was unconstitutional because its wording did not allow him to announce an election date without violating the constitution.
Business and Economy
Albania’s Borrowing Cost Increases
Tirana, Dec 13 – The cost of borrowing in the Albanian intra-bank market reached a multi year high last week as a result of worsening liquidity conditions, statistics of Bank of Albania show. In the last auction held on Dec. 2 for treasury bills, demand was tight, as a result yields increased by 24 base points compared to the previous auction.Maximum yield reached a multi year high of 8.59 per cent for a 12 months treasury bills.
News
Albanian Supreme Court begins trial of foreign minister Basha
TIRANA, Dec 16 - Albania's Supreme Court has selected judges for the upcoming trial of Foreign Minister Lulzim Basha, charged with abuse of post and corruption during the time he served as transport minister. This is expected to be the highest profile case since the 1990 trials of communist leaders. At the same time, Tirana district court ruled that the prosecutor’s office was not correct in summoning and accusing Basha.
Business and Economy
Global crisis affects Albanian ore industry
TIRANA, Dec 16 – The Albanian mining industry is now in a difficult period following the fall of mineral prices on the international market. The Albanian local press has reported that Albanian Chrome ACR, the largest chrome mining and production company in Albania, stopped production at the ferrochromium plant in Elbasan due to shrinking international markets. At the same time, miners recently protested in front of the government building
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