European Western Balkans

Fleckenstein: Negotiations with Albania now need to be opened

Knut Fleckensein; Photo © European Union 2017 - Source : EP.
Knut Fleckensein; Photo © European Union 2017 - Source : EP.

TIRANA – European Parliament’s Rapporteur on Albania, MEP Knut Fleckenstein praised the conduct of elections in Albania in an interview with Deutsche Welle, ATA reports.

He said that in general, elections were mainly conducted regularly which opens the way towards Albania’s EU accession negotiations.

Regarding to opposition’s leader claims of an unfair competition and vote buying phenomenon, Fleckenstein underlined that “concretely I cannot say anything and that we have to wait for OSCE/ODIHR’s final evaluation report on parliamentary elections.”

Whereas referring to Rama-Basha agreement reached (on 18 May), the German MEP said that it did play a role and that he was satisfied that elections were mainly conducted peacefully.

During the interview, MEP Fleckenstein also commented on Socialist Party election win, adding that an absolute majority is also an example in many countries and it only becomes a problem if there is an abuse of power.

In this regard he referred to the opposition as well which role to monitoring the government is easy since the new parliament’s opposition is big consisting of over 50 MPs out of 140 seats. On the contrary, it would have been difficult if the opposition was smaller.

Fleckenstein focused on the new government expectations whose tasks ahead are implementation of the judicial reform, the fight against drug, corruption and organized crime as well as important problems such as the property issue.

Ultimately, Fleckenstein said that “this elections climate was far satisfying than the previous ones hence referring to MEP Eduard Kukan who observed them in person and consequently it is obvious that accession negotiations should now be opened.

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