Contested votes to be counted in Tirana

TIRANA, Albania

The Central Election Commission (CEC) decided on Thursday (July 2nd) to bring the last voting boxes from the Lezha and Fier regions and count the ballots live on national TV in Tirana. The final results are expected late Friday. Voting has been contested in Shkodra, Berat and Fier.

Results as of Thursday had the ruling coalition headed by the Democratic Party one seat short of the 71 needed to establish a government. The opposition Union for Change coalition has 66 seats, and the Socialist Movement for Integration has four.

In separate statements Thursday, both the Albanian Helsinki Committee and US Ambassador to Albania John Withers urged the CEC to conclude the vote count with dignity.

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