Tirana, 4 March 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency
By Edison Kurani
The high representative of the European Union, Federica Mogherini has demanded from the Albanian politicians to approve the reform in justice as soon as possible, giving way to the start of talks between EU and Albania.
“Bring Albania to the EU! You owe it to Albania! Allow me to say to you that you this way you owe it to the whole of Europe”, was the appeal of the EU chief of diplomacy, Federica Mogherini addressed to Albanian MPs, who had gathered in a special session.
“I know that all sides, opposition and the government want Albania to move forward in its path toward the European Union and I know that the citizens of Albania are expecting for you to do this. Then do it!”, she appealed, reminding lawmakers that “citizens of Albania have dreams, desires, aspirations and many great hopes”.
During her visit in Tirana, Mogherini also stopped on the reform in the justice system. “We know that this is a deep and judiciary reform. We must not forget the purpose of this reform in the judiciary system”, said the head of EU diplomacy.
“This reform will give way to the recommendation for the launch of talks by the European Commission, in order for member countries to take a decision on this issue”.
“Based on the opinion of the Venice Commission, do the right thing, approve it. Complete the reform in the justice system”, Mrs. Mogherini asked to Albanian MPs.
“We are neither teachers, nor students, but we must take responsibility for the solution of common problems. They are clear for all of us. Together, we must find solutions that cannot be found alone”, she added.
Reactions of Albanian politics
President Bujar Nishani
President of Republic, Bujar Nishani considered the message addressed by the EU chief of diplomacy before Albanian lawmakers as inspiring. Nishani expressed his belief that this message will inspire positive reflection by political representatives in parliament.
The head of the state admits that European integration, is not only the biggest project for Albanians, but also the only alternative that Albanians have chosen for their future.
Meanwhile Mogherini said that “the introduction of trust between the citizens and institutions is very important and the European Union will make every effort to move forward in this direction”.
Speaker of Parliament, Ilir Meta
Meta said that Mrs. Mogherini has always been a notable advocate of Albania’s European integration and the integration of the Balkan region. Meanwhile, he added that Albania “will know how to react to the trust given by EU member countries, in order to deserve the launch of talks and its accession at the right moment”, implying that he is not expecting a date any time soon, in contrast to the prime minister who is convinced that the talks will be launched this year.
Prime Minister Edi Rama
Prime Minister Edi Rama considered Mogherini’s agenda as helpful. He said that “Mogherini expressed her personal engagement and the EU’s institutional engagement for the talks between Albania and the European Union to be launched this year, with the condition that the reform in the judiciary system is voted.
Leader of opposition, Lulzim Basha
The Albanian opposition continues to convey its concern to the international community about the majority’s behavior. The leader of DP, Lulzim Basha met with the EU chief of diplomacy, Federica Mogherini. Mr. Basha was the only one to talk after the meeting. He said that the meeting focused on the lack of dialogue that the majority manifests for the reform in the justice system and decriminalization. Meanwhile, he also said that the majority has refused dialogue.
Mr. Basha said that he has assured Mrs. Mogherini “… that the opposition will remain committed for every reform that bring Albania closer to the EU”.
“We have a merit and responsibility for every step that Albania has taken toward EU integration. Albania in the EU will be Albania of the democrats and socialists where there’s rule of law”, said the leader of right wing opposition, Lulzim Basha.
Mrs. Mogherini holds the post of the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Policy and Security and from 2014, she also holds the post of the vice president of the European Commission. Earlier, she has also served as Italy’s Foreign Minister and as head of the Italian Delegation in the NATO’s Parliamentary Assembly. Mrs. Mogherini’s declaration for a possible launch of talks is the first one that has been recently made by the EU. It comes at a moment when Albania has been critical to Brussels for keeping the country away from the EU. The different opinion polls also indicate a growing number of EU skeptics. /ibna/