TIRANA – Delegation of the European Union to Albania released a statement today, urging political actors to refrain from obstructions ahead of local elections scheduled for 30 June.
“Albanian citizens must be able to exercise their right to vote in an orderly and peaceful manner. In view of the vote that will take place on 30 June 2019, it is therefore essential that citizens exercising their rights can do so in an orderly fashion”, stated the Delegation.
Local elections are boycotted by the opposition Democratic Party and were therefore cancelled by President Ilir Meta earlier this month. Electoral College, however, suspended Meta’s decision on the basis of the lack of a new date, which he then determined to be 13 October.
Council of Europe cancelled its elections’ observation mission this week due to the uncertainty surrounding the date, Tirana Times reports.
The elections are taking place amidst months of anti-government protests lead by the Democratic Party, whose members abandoned the parliament in February. Several people have been arrested for attacking the election centres.
“Any violent act or any form of incitement to violence are absolutely unacceptable under any circumstances. All political sides need to show restraint and avoid inflammatory rhetoric”, states the EU Delegation.