Albania refuses the chairmanship of OSCE Committee

Albania refuses the chairmanship of OSCE Committee

IBNA Special Report

Tirana, February 11, 2015/ Independent Balkan News Agency

Albanian authorities have refused taking over the chairmanship of the OSCE (Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe) Economic and Environment Committee. This is the first time that Tirana refuses the chairmanship of an international institution that it’s part of.

Former Foreign Minister, Aldo Bumci, says that this refusal is disgraceful and unprecedented.

“The only reason for this refusal relates to personal grudges that the minister has with the Albanian ambassador in Vienna, which would chair this committee if Albania took it over”, says Mr. Bumci.

Minister Bushati says that this is not the reason. According to him, Albania was not interested in chairing such committee, because it wanted to take over the OSCE chairmanship.

“This Committee is not one of the most important ones of OSCE and the decision doesn’t have an impact in the results and relations of Albanian diplomacy”, says Mr. Bushati.

“The decision to refuse the chairmanship of the Economic and Environment Committee has been taken by the Ministry of Interior and follows a detailed analysis by the structures of the Foreign Ministry, which have concluded that this Committee is not important, bearing in mind our strategic orientation in foreign policies. We’re looking for an important place in the OSCE, a place that relates to European security. The committee that we’re talking about is the least important one”, said Bushati.

“It’s our legitimate right to demand an important committee”, -adding: “Albania is no longer in the post communist phase, therefore we must not accept everything with enthusiasm”, said Bushati, commenting the refusal of the Economic Committee.

According to the minister, Albania is in a phase where’s it’s working to play a crucial role in the Balkan region and such engagement, such as the Economy committee would require numerous economic and human resources which would not yield big returns.

“The Environment and Economy Committee is often given to Asian countries, because Europe, which is our continent and where we have strategic interests. This committee doesn’t bear any special interest and this is why have demanded security, because the issue of Ukraine, where Albania has a clear stance, is part of our strategy in the diplomatic relations with other EU countries, along with human rights. We would be very interested in chairing the Human Rights Committee, as this is a very important issue in the Balkan”, said Bushati.

Democrat MP, Aldo Bumci has another point of view. He says that the demand for the Security and Human Rights Committee is a justification to remove attention from the truth.

Bushati has not accepted OSCE’s offer, because he wants to remove from duty the Albanian ambassador to the OSCE, a personality who has produced excellent results, says Mr. Bumci.

In response to these declarations, minister Bushati doesn’t personalize the issue: “Now, Albania is growing in the diplomatic point of view and we have agreed for the Western Balkan Fund Seat to be moved to Tirana, Albania, something that shows that we have moved forward in diplomacy and we have not shocked anybody, by refusing the OSCE economy committee”, said Mr. Bushati.

The minister added that Albanian diplomacy is applying a clear strategy, by exploiting all possibilities that give shape to the big picture of Albania’s diplomatic relations in compliance with our strategy and in the spirit of understanding with our strategic partners.

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Albanian parliamentary committee for foreign affairs held a hearing session with the minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Ditmir Bushati, where during the five hours of this hearing, he also responded to what the opposition considered the scandal of refusing the OSCE offer. But the debate for the refusal of the OSCE committee doesn’t end here. For as long as Albania has refused the chairmanship of a Committee and no other committee appears on the horizon, even less those that the Albanian Foreign Ministry demands, it remains to be seen what will happen next: If  OSCE will overlook the refusal of the Economic Committee or not… /ibna/