US ambassador sees government, not political crisis in Albania

US Ambassador to Tirana John Withers said on Monday (May 24th) that Albania is in a government crisis, not a political one. Albania faces “problems that affect the welfare of the people, and disagreements have stopped the functioning of the system to help the citizens”, Withers said at an open discussion on media and the judiciary in Tirana. He welcomed the EU’s initiative to break the stalemate, stressing that the interests of the people must come first.

Meanwhile, the respective parties are holding firm. Prime Minister Sali Berisha, of the Democratic Party, reiterated on Monday that the government will continue to respect the law, making the reopening of ballot boxes used during the June 2009 general elections impossible. Opposition Socialist Party (SP) leader Edi Rama said his party will not accept any other solution than transparency of those elections, which the SP says were manipulated. Experts from Brussels are expected in Tirana this week, alongside Venice Commission representatives, to study ways to resolve the stalemate.

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