Friday, February 18, 2011

Albanian Director’s “Amnesty” Film Premiered at Berlinale

The film ‘Amnesty’ by Albanian director Bouyar Alimani has premiered at the Berlinale. Alimani has been living and working in Greece for the past twenty years.
‘Amnesty’ is his first film and also the first Albanian film in Berlinale’s history.

The story is about the life conditions of the two leading parts and brings them together at the end in a sensitive way.

Alimany studied at Tiranna’s School of Arts and always tried to work with Greek directors. As he puts it: “I have studied theater in Albania, but grew up artistically in Greece. And I am not being diplomatic. I have two home countries, honestly.”

Albanian opposition holds new anti-govt protest

Published: February 18, 2011

TIRANA, Albania - Tens of thousands of Albanian opposition supporters marched through the capital Friday to demand that the government resigns over corruption allegations, almost a month after four people died when a similar demonstration turned violent.

Hundreds of police were guarding the main government building in Tirana, where dozens of protesters and police were injured in the Jan 21 riot.

The opposition Socialists are demanding that conservative Prime Minister Sali Berisha hold early elections over allegations of corruption and vote rigging in the 2009 general election.

Shouting "Sali go," and "Prime Minister you are a murderer," as loudspeakers played sombre music, protesters filled Tirana's main boulevard. Opposition officials claimed some 200,000 people took part in the demonstration. Police did not provide an estimate.

"We shall be on the boulevard together with anyone wishing to demonstrate peacefully but in a determined way for (Berisha's) ouster and for fresh, free and fair elections," Socialist leader Edi Rama said Thursday.

Berisha has refused to resign, accusing the opposition of trying to stage a coup.

This week, the parliament voted to lift the immunity of former deputy premier Ilir Meta, who resigned last month over allegations he tried to influence a state tender for a hydropower station. Meta denied any wrongdoing.

Next week, lawmakers are expected to do the same with former economy minister Dritan Prifti, who made the allegations concerning Meta.

Albania, one of Europe's poorest countries and now a NATO member, is seeking to join the European Union, but the 27-nation bloc has said the Balkan country of 3.2 million people has not yet done enough to root out corruption.

European and U.S. officials have repeatedly called for restraint from both the Socialists and Berisha's governing Democrats.

The U.S. embassy has advised its citizens to avoid any areas where demonstrations are occurring and to limit all unnecessary travel during protests.

Albania: US raises alarm for Friday's protests

18. February 2011. | 07:21

Source: Alsat

According to an official declaration of the embassy, February 18 demonstration might last several days. Referring to the events of January 21, the declaration warns the US citizens to be careful this weekend.

The US Embassy warns its citizens for Friday’s protest of the Socialist Party (SP). According to an official declaration of the embassy, February 18 demonstration might last several days. Referring to the events of January 21, the declaration warns the US citizens to be careful this weekend.

“Even though there are declarations for a peaceful demonstration, we saw that the January 21 demonstration was a violent one and it resulted with the death of four persons; many others were wounded, among whom many police officers.

We remind the US citizens that even though the protest aims at being a peaceful one, it might turn into violence and it might come out of control. You should avoid them as much as possible.

Demonstrations in one city might lead to other public demonstrations in all the country. You should be vigilant and well-aware of what is happening around you and you should listen to the reports of the local media on the demonstration,” said the declaration.

The declaration said that the embassy does not have specific information on the place where the demonstration will be held, even though it has previously been organized near the parliament or the Prime Minister’s Office, or the protesters have blocked the main entrances in Tirana.

According to the US Embassy, there is information that the demonstration might last more than one day. Nevertheless, the SP informed it will organize its next protest on Friday, February 18.

LAOS MP Korantis: What happens to our consul in Korce?

Following recent reports that talked about withdrawing our Consul General in Korca, because of the discomfort created by the Albanian government's recent statements to the Greek minority, the State Representative of LAOS, J. Korantis Question submitted to the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Without question, Mr. Korantis asks if we are to be revoked Mr. Economou and whether this development give rise to the Albanian side and triumphant rise of nationalist views against Greece.

The full text of the question is as follows:
To: Foreign Minister Droutsas Subject: Information on the recall of Consul General in Korca Multiplied in recent days by reports that the Government revoke the Consul General in Korca Theodoros Economou - Kamarinos.

The recent statements on human rights and national self-determination of Northern our brothers.
Mr. Kamarinos made obvious historical truths. It is known reactions of the Albanian side, which wants to rewrite the story, not surprising, therefore, the attitude, and it is condemned.

The question is what the Greek Government disagrees with the remarks by Mr. Kamarinos. Do you consider that Korytsas are not Greek? Did believes that Northern Epirus not have the inalienable right of national self-determination in the forthcoming census in Albania?

To Minister:

1. Is there any truth to withdraw the Consul General Korce?

2. If so, consider what interpretation to give the Albanian side to this move? Will not be for a reason Tirana triumphalism on the one hand and on the other hand embolden the arrogant nationalistic views?

3. What conclusions should reap the Hellenism of our Northern, on the attitude of the Mother - home to him?

John Korantis

US 'Concerned' about Democratic Trends in Macedonia

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton conveyed her concern about developments related to the rule of law in Macedonia to the country's Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski when the two met in Washington on Wednesday.

Sinisa Jakov Marusic
Skopje “The Secretary expressed concerns about trends regarding rule of law, independent media, and civil society,” US Assistant Secretary of State Philip Crowley told media after the meeting.

The Secretary also expressed appreciation for Macedonia’s contributions to the international force in Afghanistan, recognising Macedonia as one of the highest per capita troop contributors.

Clinton “also reiterated our hope that Macedonia and Greece resolve together the longstanding name issue so that Macedonia can move forward on seeking NATO membership and fulfilling its Euro-Atlantic aspirations,” Crowley said............

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Επέτειος της Ανακήρυξης της Αυτονομίας της Βορείου Ηπείρου Anniversary of the Proclamation of Autonomy of Northern Epirus




In exclusive statements to the withdrawn abruptly in Athens Greek Consul Korca Kamarinos Theodore Economou, reveals that the cause of removal was

The use of 'Greeks' and' Northern Epirus! "Words are forbidden to appear in the Foreign Ministry, but not for the conscience and hearts of true Greek Diplomats who sacrifice to serve the Fatherland and finally thanks to the pride and their individual effort is preserved even in Greece ...

"Not withdraw what I said about GREEKS AND NORTHERN EPIRUS"

Ν : You are the eyes of the Greeks around the world a hero, as shown in the messages that arrive here at CARE ... that the true reason for the revocation was your words that you said in Northern Epirus, as' grandparents were Greeks, that there "were Greek glorious battles and the Greek people were always present "and that" this region we call Northern Epirus?

CONSUL Economou: "I did my duty. Τίποτε παραπάνω. Nothing more. For this reason, withdrawn in Athens! I aware of my mission. If I was in Canberra or elsewhere, will work under other circumstances. But I was in Northern Epirus "...

www. N OIAZOMAI. net

Change of nationality, Dule charges Spahiu: There are personal purposes

TIRANA-President of HURP Vangel Dule, described today as "unconstitutional statements of Deputy High Council of Justice, Dato Spahiu for changing nationality": "Spahiu is using the issue of changing nationality as a campaign for personal purposes": - Dule said. In a statement to the media, the chairman of the HURP-called President Bamir Topi that be an end to attacks in his "Greek minority is made.

Deputy HCJ, Kreshnik Spahiu, is finally engaged in an awareness campaign against the change of nationality of Albanian citizens. He is one of the first officials gave the alarm that many citizens in the south of the country are involved in a process to change the nationality of Albanians in Greece, in an irregular way as a result of the temptations of the Greek state.

Demonstration Notices of February 18,

Albanian Socialist Party Demonstration

February 16, 2011

The Socialist Party (SP) has announced its intent to hold a large public demonstration in the city of Tirana on the afternoon of Friday, February 18, 2011. The Embassy does not have specific information on the location or staging area for the proposed demonstration. Past demonstrations have affected all major incoming arteries to the city and significantly disrupted the flow of traffic. In Tirana, demonstrations frequently center around the Parliament, the office of the Prime Minister and Tirana’s main Deshmoret e Kombit boulevard. No central gathering place for demonstrators has been announced at this time. There are some indications that the demonstration planned for February 18 could last for several days.

Although large, peaceful demonstrations in Tirana have occurred frequently in the recent past, a demonstration on January 21, 2011 was violent and resulted in the death of four persons and injuries to many others, including to Albanian State Police. We remind U.S. citizens that even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn violent and unpredictable. You should avoid them if at all possible. Demonstrations in one city have the potential to lead to additional public rallies or demonstrations in other locations around the country. Be alert and aware of your surroundings and pay attention to what the local news media reports regarding all possible public rallies or demonstrations. U.S. citizens are urged to exercise strong caution if within the vicinity of any demonstrations.

U.S. citizens traveling abroad should regularly monitor the U.S. Embassy's website and the Department of State's Bureau of Consular Affairs website, where the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Country Specific Information can be found. The U.S. Embassy also encourages U.S. citizens to review "A Safe Trip Abroad," which includes valuable security information for those both living and traveling abroad. In addition to information on the Internet, travelers may obtain up-to-date information on security conditions by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the U.S. and Canada, or a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444 from elsewhere.

We encourage U.S. citizens living or traveling in Albania to enroll with the U.S. Embassy in Tirana through the State Department's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) website to obtain updated information on travel and security within Albania. By enrolling, U.S. citizens make it easier for the U.S. Embassy to contact them in case of emergency. The U.S. Embassy in Tirana is located at Rr. Elbasanit, No. 103, Tel: +355-(0)4-224-7285; Fax: +355-(0)4-237-4957; E-mail:

Albania: Protests against census ethnicity and religion

Peaceful protest held today in Tirana in front of the Supreme Council of Justice, with the slogan during the census will be based on national and religious identity of the Albanian people and to be held in early April 2011.

The protest was organized by the organization 'black and red' (SS Albanian flag) and support by Albanian organizations from Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, the Presevo Valley and members of the Cham community.
"We believe firmly that the census is a national and religious criteria does not serve national interests but is supported by unpatriotic circuits which at 20 years aimed at technical increase in other ethnic groups in Albania.

This census is inconsistent with the Constitution of the Republic of Albania and the only reason this is enough to question its validity, "the statement of the organization 'fans reddish' / 'Tifozëve Kuq e Zi'.
Noted that before the protest was meeting representatives of organizations, the deputy chairman of the Supreme Judicial Council, Kreshnik Spahiu, who was reportedly the main opposing the inventory of national and religious criteria.

The meeting of organizations with Spahiu, gave the sense of solidarity with the protesters their views of the High court. They asked, in fact, find legal machinations in order to prevent the conduct of the census with the logic of national criteria because it is detrimental to the reality of the country.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Picture: AFP
Burgas-Alexandroupolis project will not be closed: Transneft

16 February 2011

FOCUS News Agency

Moscow. The shareholders in Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline project do not plan to close it, Transneft official Igor Demin told ITAR-TASS.

“The closure of the project is not under discussion. In addition, nobody considers redirecting Burgas-Alexandroupolis supplies to another oil pipeline,” he highlighted.
At their tomorrow’s meeting in Rome the Burgas-Alexandroupolis shareholders will discuss Bulgaria and Greece’s debts in the project and proposals for future financing.
Picture: AFP
Albanian lawmakers lift ex-deputy PM's immunity

16 February 2011

FOCUS News Agency
Home / Southeast Europe and Balkans
Tirana. Albanian lawmakers on Wednesday voted to lift the parliamentary immunity for former deputy prime minister Ilir Meta, paving the way for him to be investigated over corruption allegations, AFP reported.

The corruption claims involving Meta prompted the Albanian opposition to call a mass anti-government protest on January 21 which turned deadly. Four demonstrators were killed, exacerbating a long-running political crisis.
Meta stepped down in mid-January after video footage was shown on television apparently showing him asking the then economy minister to favour one company over others bidding for a hydro electricity plant in March last year.
The vote in parliament on Wednesday voted to lift Meta's immunity was overwhelming.
Meta, the leader of the Socialist Movement for Integration which remains part of the ruling coalition, told deputies he welcomed the probe.
"I am open to the investigation and I put myself at the disposal of the judicial authorities to prove that these are just accusations and mafia-like blackmail attempts," he told parliament.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Climate of terror, against Hellenic Community in Albania

Albanian Ultra-nationalist Abdi Baleta, sad on television "Top Channel" that: "The Greeks in Albania, can suffer as Greeks of Zmirni in 1913, when they were expelled by the Turks"

The Albanian nationalists, forget that the NATO Supreme Commander in Europe, James Stavridis, is one of the Hellenic families expelled from Zmirni

NATO takes under control,
entire arsenal of Albanian army

Climate of terror, has prevailed in Tirana, last days, where the Albanian media, has begun a fierce campaign, in the eve of the population census next month. The Secretary of High Council of Justice Kreshnik Spahiu and ultra-nationalist Abdi Baleta, have dominated television channels in all Albanians to exercise terror against those families who have benefited from the Albanian courts, the Greek nationality.

In a statement at "Top Channel TV", Abdi Balleta, stated inter alia that "the Greeks of Albania, can learn from the expulsion of the Greeks of Asia Minor, showing the city populated by Hellenes of Zmirni, who were expelled from Turks in 1913. "
Such a sense of tension and uncertainty ahead of a census, which will be declared religion and ethnicity, can not pass unnoticed by Athens, which has the main responsibility of the moral of their Hellenic compatriots together, in Northern Epirus.

But the unexpected declaration of the Albanian nationalist Baleta, relates to the fact that one of the Hellenic families brutally expelled by the Turks in 1913, was the family of James Stavridis, the NATO Supreme Commander in Europe. However, NATO has make the "first step" in Albania. Defense Minister Arben Imami, said that NATO has taken control of the entire arsenal of Albanian army warehouses, which in the current difficult moments for Albania, is a target by terrorists and criminal groups.

Balkan tensions

The aircraft R61 Charles-De-Gaulle back to the Aegean Sea

In the Aegean arriving in the coming days the team of the French aircraft carrier battle R61 "Charles-De-Gaulle" for joint exercises with various scenarios with the Air Force.

Singles scenario of attack and defense of the island, which refers to the Turkish plan for SUGA occupying three islands Aegean (Leros, Fourni, Oinousses) all the details of which reveals the strategy released tomorrow. But beyond the given political-military support, there are other reasons that make the French state in this area:

The reserves of natural gas and oil have been found in the eastern Mediterranean, especially in the part of Greek and Cypriot EEZ, has attracted the interest of French oil companies such as giant TOTAL interested in obtaining mining rights and the exploitation by these deposits.
At the operational level will be involved in the exercises by the Greek side, virtually, through the air: F-16, Mirage 2000 (we say "endogalliki" conflict) and ASEP EMB-145 Erieye. On the French side will seek a kind of "revenge" for the Rafale F.3, the Super Etendard and the E-2C 2000 Hawkeye who had participated in AKI progioumeni exercise and had lost more battles against the Greek fighters.

The exercises will be conducted in the Aegean Sea and include apart from the French aircraft carrier, frigates and escort the submarine component of the aircraft carrier battle group.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Deepens the Balkan barometer

At the same time, however, be increased at the same time events in each Balkan country potentially threaten the geopolitical balance the former (?) "Powder Key of Europe" Kosovo, Bosnia, Montenegro, Albania, Macedonia and Bulgaria have, to varying degrees but in the same direction, apparently identical to test the political system, the supposed "European" identity, even consistency.

In this traditionally volatile neighborhood of Greece is given and legitimate institutions, the domination of the European Union, the Atlantic Alliance and, primarily, the United States. Simultaneously, however, increase strongly influence of Turkey and Islam, is China and enters Israel and Russia, in straight competition with the Americans, investing strategically in the pipeline for Russian gas and oil towards the European Union.

In the six Balkan countries are endemic and act cumulatively interweaving political corruption and organized crime, the question of power and state institutions of all against all others, the national mutual claims between neighboring countries with an instrument of national minorities, economic depression society and even living legacy of communist regimes. The bleak reality unfold and substantiate what are published daily in each country following general terms:


Three fragile confederation of states in one package. The State only remains as yet an international protectorate. The Serb Republic is facing the Motherland Serbia and the Federation of Croats, Bosnian Croats are turning to their motherland, Croatia and the Bosnian Muslims to Islam and Turkey. Every election, as the recent, becoming a test of life or death, and by definition unable to launch an even rudimentary, Republic. All hanging by a thread and foreign governments suggest a radical revision of the state constitution, which the Serbs, however, threatening to reject secession.


The newest independent state in the Balkans would not exist or may be able to survive only as an international protectorate. Serbs remaining in the north centered on the divided city Mitrovitsa and in direct contact with Mother Serbia does not recognize the state and the southern Serbian attempt to integrate the institutions to be rescued. But such is the quality of institutions that the elections held on December 12, 2010 and the election results were announced on January 31, 2011. According to a report by the Council of Europe the winner of the elections (less than 33%) Prime Minister Hashim Thaci, a national hero warlord systematically delivered a massive trade in human organs diamelizontas Serb prisoners, civilians and gunmen, while continuing to excel from the top power, smuggling drugs, arms and human beings.
The U.S. military base Bond Steel, the border between Kosovo and Skopje, is the largest in Europe. The Kosovo Albanians consider their country matrix of the Albanian nation and themselves more than the Albanians in neighboring Albania and the neighboring state of Macedonia. With European funding last year launched an international highway linking the capital Pristina to Tirana and the Adriatic, and this year announced a new 55 km highway that will join the Pristina-Skopje, the most populous city with a population of Albanians in the Balkans. The two roads unite Albanians in three neighboring states.

The opposition denounced the government for electoral fraud, corruption and dictatorship. Massive protest in Tirana on Friday 28 / 1 collided hard with the police, killing four protesters dead. Next Friday the opposition launched a new demonstration. The country joined NATO and seeks membership in the EU which, however, is insufficient even the minimum criteria. American bases have been installed in the meantime the Albanian Adriatic coast. Alongside is the nationalist movement that openly claim to join the Great Albania, Epirus and the western part of Macedonia in Greece, the western part of the FYROM, Kosovo, Sandzak and Montenegro, the Presevo Valley in Serbia.

Representations Albanians from these regions and made the Chams 2 / 11 in Tirana high concentration where they presented the "Charter of Physical Albania.
On 18/11 the Balkan Observatory, based in Tirana, said that according to opinion polls, the 62.7% of Albanians in the Balkans in favor of a Greater Albania. Prime Minister Sali Berisha said that Albania does not seek to change the border, but EU accession. Also he called on the government in Skopje should not violate the rate of Albanian citizens.

In the South,there are Toscs, Muslims and together Christians, with religious freedom and is always directed to the Greeks. More than 500,000 Albanians working permanently in Greece and many have integrated into Greek society. Albanian immigrants in Middle Europe control powerful criminal networks trafficking drugs and weapons. In America, acting powerful Albanian lobby.

more see:

Local elections threatened in Albania


TIRANA, Albania -- The May 8th local elections are in jeopardy since the political parties are lagging behind in preparations with the Central Election Commission (CEC). In order to discuss the concerns, the head of the OSCE office in Tirana, Eugen Wolfarth, has requested a meeting with President Bamir Topi on Monday (February 14th).

The CEC has managed to form only half of the local commissions to prepare the elections, since the opposition Socialist Party has refused to nominate members from its ranks. International officials criticise this as "anti-constitutional". The CEC has now extended the deadline for nominating members until the end of the week.


Saranda 11/02/2011


Seeing the census proces in Albania, the Albanian press and other centers, can not understand the spirit of modern times, they discover non-existent issues and foster imagination to sustain a climate of tension in the existence of our communities and the Greek-Albanian relations.
Series this time was the Consul General of Greece in Korce, who as an official guest of the anniversary of 20 years of our organization in Korce "Omonia", hailing the event made an implicit appeal to these Greeks to participate in the census, stating boldly that everyone what you feel.

The presence of Hellenism in Korce, Moschopolis is more than a given, historically documented. Although the area received the greatest pressures of assimilation in the past, nobody can stop them now to say what they feel. The direct and indirect bullying, have no connection with contemporary culture and is consistent with European state of Albania.

The Democratic National Greek minority "Omonia" and the entire Greek minority, were never a problem and a threat to the Albanian state, but a factor of peace and development while the Greek state is the main ally of Albania in the Euro-Atlantic integration course of alliances as therefore we can not understand the 'concern' of those centers.

We would expect that the Albanian press, to be a champion of the free census, critical to the responsible officials, a few months before the census does not communicate the way and the final questionnaire, not rage channeling anti-Hellenic to the public.

The D.E.E.EM. "Omonia" faithful to the vision of peaceful coexistence between our communities will continue to struggle and be a factor of peaceful coexistence, while demanding the same respect for the Greek minority.
Press and Communication

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Albanians, Macedonians Clash over 'Church' Construction

Rival Macedonian and Albanian protesters have clashed at Skopje’s fortress over the controversial construction of a musuem in the form of a church, leaving several injured.

Sinisa Jakov Marusic

Witnesses say that a fight broke out between ethnic Macedonians, who were supporting the building of the museum-church, and ethnic Albanians, who are opposed to the project, on Sunday afternoon.

Stones were thrown, according to witnesses, and local media has reported that at least one person was stabbed.

Police have now separated the two groups, but refused to give further detail of the incident, saying they would report on developments later today.

The plan to build a museum in the style of a medieval church at the fortress in Macedonia’s capital has ignited the country's tense ethnic relations.

Nearly all ethnic Albanian political parties and organisations have labelled the project as a provocation from the ruling, conservative government of Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski. Some have called for the construction of a mosque at the same location.

Late on Friday, a group of people led by high-ranking officials from the junior, ruling Democratic Union for Integration, DUI, the biggest Albanian party in the country, forcibly entered the fortress and started demolishing the construction site.

The action was condemned by Gruevski and his main, ruling VMRO DPMNE party. Observers say the incident puts the ruling coalition with the DUI at risk.

In 2001, Macedonia suffered a short-lived armed conflict between ethnic Albanian insurgents and the security forces. The conflict ended with the so-called Ohrid peace deal, which guaranteed greater rights for Albanians, who make up about a quarter of the population of the country.

The former insurgent leaders then formed the DUI, which has since been by far the strongest ethnic Albanian party in Macedonia.