A special EU-delegation will investigate starting September on ground the political crisis that has been tearing Albania for more than a year.
Since June 2009 the Socialist Party of Albania, headed by Edi Rama, has refused to recognize the results, claiming that rival Democratic Party of Albania, headed by former and present PM Sali Berisha falsified them. Official results state that the coalition around the Democratic Party has 46.92% of the vote, while the rival Socialist coalition – 45.34%. The democrats have on their part consistently refused to do a recount of the especially close electoral contest.
The EU delegation is to receive a high profile, being headed by a special envoy of the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs Catherine Ashton, who will visit Tirana herself in September to prepare a report on the progress of Albania.
That report is going to influence the decision of EU member states whether to grant a visa-free regime for Albania and how to approach the further EU integration of the Balkan nation.