Friday, May 14, 2010

Thousands head to Albanian capital for protest over alleged election fraud

The Associated Press

TIRANA, Albania — Thousands of opposition Socialist supporters are heading to the Albanian capital for a major rally in support of hunger strikers demanding a recount of June's parliamentary elections, which they claim were rigged.

"Two weeks ago 21 opposition lawmakers and 180 supporters started a hunger strike, camped out beneath Prime Minister Sali Berisha's office. Thirty-two had broken their fast because of health problems by Friday morning.

Berisha's conservative Democratic party narrowly won the June 28 general election, giving them 75 of parliament's 140 seats. The opposition holds 65 seats.

The Socialists, led by Tirana Mayor Edi Rama, have been boycotting parliament since the vote, briefly turning up only to press for a recount in several districts. The government rejects the demand as illegal.

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