President Bush visits Albania, backs Kosovo independence

President Bush visits Albania, backs Kosovo independence TIRANA, Albania — US President George W. Bush arrived in Tirana Sunday (June 10th) to an enthusiastic welcome, with thousands turning out in the capital’s main square to greet him.During his one-day visit, the first to Albania by a US president, Bush was to receive the country’s highest honour and have a street named after him. He has already held talks with Albanian counterpart Alfred Moisiu and Prime Minister Sali Berisha, and was scheduled to participate in a high-level meeting of the US Adriatic Charter countries later in the day.

As anticipated, Bush came with a message concerning neighbouring Kosovo. At a joint news conference with Berisha, Bush said “certain independence” must be the goal of any plan for a new set of status talks. “We need to get moving,” press reports quoted him as saying. “Sooner rather than later you’ve got to say ‘Enough’s enough. Kosovo’s independent'”. He also urged Albania to contribute to maintaining peace and stability in the province. On Saturday, prior to his arrival, Bush called for the UN Security Council to set a deadline for adopting a solution.

Bush next travels to Sofia, the last stop on his eight-day European tour. (Reuters, AFP, RTK, Focus, VOA News, BBC – 10/06/07; Albanian News, Vecernji list, Vecer, B92 – 09/06/07)

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