Saturday, March 12, 2011

"Proinos Logos" Newspaper

And a new report - Catapult for Albania by the European Union

No progress was made ​​in Albania in key functional areas of the state (Command, Crime, reforms, etc.) states, inter alia, a recent report by the Commission of the European Parliament, which monitors the proceedings in the neighboring country.

The report points out, inter alia, that Albania, as a candidate country for accession to the European Union should give more emphasis "on preventive dimension of crime and the fight against corruption" and to support the growth and development of an active market, to combat unemployment.

The report stresses that it has been no progress in the following areas:
• Minority rights, cultural rights and protection of minorities.
• Economic and social rights.
• Observance of international human rights law.

Discrimination in Albania, in all sectors, civil society, primarily the National Greek minority - and not only - continued:
"Equal opportunities for all ethnic Albanians - and non-discrimination - are missing, or at least are not quite visible," noted the report and further noted that the application of anticorrosive measures should be the first priority of Albanian government, "because will certainly be difficulties in cooperation with the European Union. "


The Commission in exercise of its powers should consider the following issues:

Religious rights.

Back of church property was bound by the Hoxha regime.
Counterfeiting and appropriation of Greek history, particularly in relation to the continent. Unacceptable those listed in their missiles of the encyclopaedic dictionary of the Albanian Academy of Sciences: Ioannina, Arta, Preveza and Igoumenitsa ... ceded to Greece by the Greek-Albanian border design!

The Census ...

Hot on the number of Greek minority, is "the agenda" for Albania, as the current year will be held census. Noted that the committee of the European Union, already delivered to the Albanian government in the questionnaire. According to the Commission's instructions, the Albanian government should record this time as religion and ethnicity.

Recalled that the last census in Albania was a Government Minister Ilir Meta (the Socialist Party), with joint funding from Greece (!) And the Council of Europe.
Then, the Ethnic Greek Minority abstained from the whole process, not entered the religion and ethnicity.


What does the Greek government in this direction?

"Absolutely nothing, or rather punish (!) The Greek Consul General in Korca - who did his duty to his country, urging the Northern Epirus to actively take part in the census - to satisfy the government of Sali Berisha (!)», Officials say the National Greek minority in Albania and add:

The Tsams by tolerance - or call - the chauvinistic circles of the Albanian government prepared now that abolished the visa, to celebrate the Day of Genocide Chams "in Igoumenitsa.
What will it really make the Greek government? We ignore this phenomenon wild chauvinism, not to "disturb the Greek-Albanian relations;
From Greece he visits the integration of Albania into the European Union. If you do not understand (deliberately of course) Mr. Sali Berisha, let's point it out, sometimes, the Greek government and the opposition.

Cham Community: "Ikonomus Non Grata" "Slogans against the Greek Consul" One day after the reaction of the Municipal Council of Korca for the return of the Greek Consul, T. Economou, comes in Korca from Athens, held also a protest by Cham Community, "with slogans against the Consul on the main street of the city and neighborhoods," writes Albanian newspaper.

Even affixing posters in stores and columns they wrote in English ... "I Love you Cameria" 'I love Tsamouria' chanting slogans to leave the Greek Consul.

The statements for Economou triggered even different organizations. With other patriotic statements the Consu Ikonomus, recently asked residents of Korça for next census population to register as Greeks and these statements have caused severe reactions, says the report.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Albania Police Criticised After Attack On Roma Camp

Albanian police are being accused of racism by local media, after a Roma camp on the outskirts of Tirana was burned down three days ago by perpetrators that have not yet been found.

Besar Likmeta
Roma family in Laprake
Roma family in Laprake | Photo by : UNHCR
Some dwellers in the camp, which was home to roughly 40 families, told local media the attackers arrived at night and beat them with sticks while setting fire to their barracks over several days, pressuring them to relocate.

The residents of the camps say the police failed to prevent the attacks and provide protection for the families, who now have moved to live in settlements in Tirana and other cities.

It remains unclear if the attack was the result of racism or instigated by the financial interests of real estate developers looking to build in the area.

Police denied on Friday that they had disregarded the laws against discrimination of minorities and the protection of children while dealing with the case.

According to the police statement, the Roma “initiated the conflict” with their neighbors that then escalated.

“We have questioned the Roma about the fire that swept their dwelling but they have refused to testify,” read the statement.

According to the Union for Albanian Roma, a Tirana-based NGO, up to 150,000 Roma people live in Albania, part of a community that struggles with discrimination, poor literacy rates and massive unemployment.

Dutch marines arrive in Athens after release by Libyan regime

Athens (ANA-MPA) -- A Greek Air Force C-130 aircraft carrying three Dutch marines who were released by the Libyan regime after nearly two weeks of captivity landed at Athens International Airport at dawn on Friday.

The C-130, with Greek deputy foreign minister Dimitris Dollis on board, also brought another 12 Greeks evacuated from violence-torn Libya.(ANA-MPA)

The three Dutch marines -- two men and a woman -- were arrested by the Libyan regime after landing a helicopter, without permission, near the port of Sirte to evacuate two Dutch citizens from Libya.(ANA-MPA)

The woman marine was identified as Yvonne Niermans, while the names of the other two marines have not been released as yet.

The Greek government said Thursday night that it had dispatched the C-130 to Libya to pick up the freed marines after agreement achieved during a meeting earlier in the day between Dollis and Muammar Gaddafi's emissary Mohamed Tahir Siala.(ANA-MPA)

Shortly after the marines' arrival in Athens, Dutch foreign minister Uri Rosenthal telephoned his Greek counterpart Dimitris Droutsas to thank him for Greece's intercession in the case of the three Dutch marines and their safe evacuation to Athens with a Greek Airforce plane.

Arab Spring “Unlikely” to Spell Recognitions for Kosovo

The overthrow of long-standing supporters of Serbia in the Arab world is unlikely to lead to new recognitions for Kosovo, experts have cautioned.

Lawrence Marzouk

Many of the rapidly tumbling regimes of North Africa and Middle East were members of the Non-Aligned Movement, the brainchild of Yugoslav Communist leader Josip Broz Tito.

This, combined with the preponderance of internal separatist movements in the area, has stymied Kosovo’s hope that the Muslim world would embrace it. Just six countries from the region have recognised Kosovo’s independence to date.

But revolution in the Arab world is unlikely to lead to a warming of relations with the world’s youngest country, according to Anna Gilmour, Editor of Jane's Intelligence Review.

“The regime changes in North Africa since January are unlikely to have altered the stance towards recognising Kosovo, particularly given that in Egypt and Tunisia the higher echelons of government remain largely unchanged, despite the departures of [ousted Tunisian President] Ben Ali and [ousted Egyptian President] Mubarak,” she told Prishtina Insight.

“Moreover, as Libya has historically been divided between the hostile east and west, endorsement of a successful separatist movement could prove domestically controversial, regardless of the outcome of the current uprising.”

Afrim Hoti, Professor of international law at Prishtina University, sounds a slightly more optimistic note, although he believes that it is too early to determine what the changes will mean for Kosovo.

He said: “The changes in North Africa and other countries are not yet clear. In the best case, the dissatisfaction and revolts have been led by forces that are fighting dictatorship and would like to turn the country into western democracies, democratic rule.

“Then, there are hopes that Kosovo can benefit from this situation.”

But he fears that the situation may in fact worsen if Islamic fundamentalists seize control.

“In the worst scenario, those forces have been led by elements supported or influenced by Islamic fundamentalism and, in that case, Kosovo will not benefit.

The Non-Aligned Movement was founded in Belgrade in 1961, and was largely the brainchild of Yugoslavia's President, Josip Broz Tito, India's first Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, Egypt's second President, Gamal Abdel Nasser, Ghana's first president Kwame Nkrumah, and Indonesia's first President, Sukarno.

With the fall of communism in Russia and Eastern Europe, the movement has struggled to remain relevant.
Kosovo’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs was unavailable for comment.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

OSCE Sounds Alarm on Albania’s Local Elections

A report released on Wednesday by the OSCE raises the alarm that Albania’s upcoming local ballot might be damaged by political maneuvering.

Besar Likmeta
A voter casts her ballot during parliamentary elections

Voter casts ballot during election | Photo by : OSCE

“The political environment continues to be deeply polarized, with harsh rhetoric and personal attacks by the leaders of the main political parties,” the OSCE says in the report, which was written after a fact-finding mission visited in Tirana in January.

The report notes that local political parties have failed to address the two main OSCE recommendations after the disputed 2009 general elections, that “parties should demonstrate the political will for the conduct of democratic elections” and that “they should discharge their electoral duties in a responsible manner for the general interest of Albania”.

The last parliamentary election in June 2009 has resulted in a prolonged standoff between the ruling centre-right majority and the Socialist opposition over the results. Nearly two years after the poll, the squabble continues to be a source of tension.

The political crisis, which brought to a halt the passage of reforms necessary for EU membership, thwarted Albania’s bid to obtain EU candidate status in 2010.

As the May 8 local elections approach, Albania’s ruling majority and Socialist opposition remain deeply divided, following the death of four opposition protestors during an anti-government rally on January 21.

Although it registered for the poll, the opposition has refused to nominate its candidates for the local bi-partisan ballot counting commissions. Opposition representatives have also boycotted the meetings of the Central Electoral Commission, CEC, since January.

“Despite the obligation of CEC members to fulfill their duties in an independent manner, the preparations for the local elections have already led the CEC to split along party lines,” notes the OSCE report.

“Opposition members of the CEC have not attended or have walked out of a number of CEC meetings, and the practice of instructions being co-signed by the chairperson and the deputy chairperson seems to have ceased,” the report adds.

The needs and means mission concludes that the OSCE should have a robust presence in Albania during the local elections, with 30 long-term monitors and 400 short-term observers to follow polling day procedures.

The international observers would support 900 local monitors, which are expected to be deployed by a coalition of Albanian NGOs.

The Balkans slip-slide away

By Tim Judah
10.03.2011 / 04:44 CET
Testing the value of two hoary old clichés about the importance of keeping the European Union engaged in the western Balkans.

Just because something is a cliché does not mean it is not true. A week in which the EU has brought together Serbia and Kosovo in direct talks for the first time in three years is a good time to recall two of the golden oldies about the EU's foreign policy, in particular toward the western Balkans. The first is that if we cannot get things right in our own backyard, how on earth are we supposed to pull our weight anywhere else? The second is that as soon as Balkan countries stop moving forwards in terms of EU integration, they begin to slip backwards.

Let's draw up a balance sheet and start with Macedonia. This year marks the 20th year of its existence as an independent state and the tenth year since the EU helped nip in the bud the conflict with ethnic-Albanian guerrillas.

In 2005, Macedonia became a candidate for EU membership and in 2009 its citizens were allowed to travel without visas to the Schengen zone.

Since 2008, though, Macedonia's EU (and NATO) accession has ground to a halt. The reason is, of course, the unresolved dispute about the country's name. Greece, even in its current enfeebled state, has been able to stop Macedonia's EU accession. The result has not been a Macedonian government doing anything it can to reassure Brussels of its good intentions, but, rather, the opposite.

Greece accuses Macedonia of trying to steal its Hellenic identity, so, in lieu of a gigantic bronze V-sign, the Macedonians are building a massive plinth in the centre of Skopje that they will soon crown with a statue of Alexander the Great......................................more see: ........................

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Gaddafi warns against EU 'interference' in call

(ANA-MPA) -- Government sources in Athens have confirmed an AFP report that Prime Minister George Papandreou spoke with Libya's Col. Muammar Gaddafi by telephone on Tuesday. The initiative for the call was made by Gaddafi.

Sources said the Greek prime minister listened to Gaddafi's views on events in Libya and emphasised the importance of a UN resolution in his reply, stressing the need to find a solution in order to avoid the emerging humanitarian crisis and any escalation of violence caused by the increasing number of victims that was raising the chances of civil war.

The AFP report, quoting the Libyan state news agency Jana, said the embattled Libyan leader had telephoned Papandreou in order to warn the European Union against interfering in his country's affairs.

"Any violation of Libya's security or stability would necessarily have dire consequences for the security in north Africa, the Mediterranean and Europe," Gaddafi warned, according to Jana.

He also termed Greece as "a friend of Libya that can pass on this piece of advice to the European Union," AFP stated.

The candidature of President of Omonia, is at risk, charged by High State Control

The "Oppossition Coalition" would not support the municipality of Himara Candidate Vasilis Bollano

"Top Channel TV" on News Edition today, speaks for disagreement between Socialist Party and HRUP for supporting Bollano as New Mayor candidate for Himara Municipality

The television station "Top Channel" adjacent to profess opposition leader Edi Rama, citing the leadership of the Socialist Party of Albania, published today by the news that although the Socialists are in collaboration with HRUP - party that supports the Omonia - no will support the General Chairman of Omonia, Vasilis Bolanos, as candidate of Omonia - HURP for Himara municipality.

According to the same publication, the two main reasons that the opposition would not support the Bolanos is that it is anti-national positions and charged with abuse of power by the High State Control (KLSH).

The Himara Municipality, has including into registration process of properties by OSCE, the anti democratic Law 7501. But this process, is risking to failed, after some NGO of Himara, have replaced categorically.

New Tension on the Greek Albanian relations

Municipality of Korca: "Greek Consul irresponsible statements, to remove from Korca"

Korca. The City Council of Korca has reacted today after restore the Greek consul Theodhoro Ikonomus. The Council members have asked today, a day after returning to Theodoros Ikonomus, his replacement for reasons of anti-Albanian statements, he has done, some weeks ago for Albanian media.

"We have no connection with chauvinism. Ikonomus statements are chauvinistic and irresponsible "- declaring the Municipality Council of Korca, in its statements. The Municipal Council of Korca in his statement said also. he would join protests of patriotic associations in all Albania.

The Greek Consul, became known for his statements, where he was calling from Korça to register as Greeks, which caused strong reactions by Albanian nationalism. After three weeks absence, he has returned yesterday to the Greek consulate Korce, reporters News 24 TV in Tirana.

Albania Opposition Registers for Local Elections

Albania’s Socialist opposition party registered on Tuesday for the May 8 local elections, despite earlier warnings of a possible boycott.

Besar Likmeta

The Socialists sent the official application to participate in the ballot to the Central Electoral Commission, close to the final deadline.

The elections are seen, both by local and international observers, as a key test for the country’s democratic credentials after the January 21 unrest that left four anti-government protesters dead and dozens wounded.

Although it registered for the poll, the opposition has refused to nominate its candidates for the local bi-partisan ballot counting commissions.

The vacancies in question are the opposition slots for representatives on the Commissions of Electoral Administration Zones, CEAZs, the bodies which actually count the ballots in Albania’s twelve electoral zones.

According to the Electoral Code, the political parties should have proposed their candidates for commissioners by January 24 and the CEAZs should have been established by February 7.

Albania has been facing renewed political crisis in recent weeks following the violent clashes between state security forces and protesters on January 21 in Tirana.

The protest of January 21 turned into a riot when several hundred anti-government protesters attacked the police barricade set up to protect the prime minister’s office, using sticks, stones and Molotov cocktails.

Police responded with tear gas, water cannons and later with live ammunition fire.

Prosecutors are currently investigating the murders, the organisers of the protest and the violent demonstrators that attacked the police.

Prime Minister Sali Berisha claims that his government is the victim of a failed coup attempt, part of the January 21 protests, orchestrated by the Socialists, the president, the secret service, the general prosecutor and four journalists.

Meanwhile, opposition leader Edi Rama accuses Berisha of turning a peaceful protest into a bloodbath and attacking any institution that does not agree with his version of the facts.

The recent tension between Rama’s Socialists and the ruling majority of Prime Minister Berisha has aggravated an already poisoned political climate which has been in a troubled state since the disputed June 2009 parliamentary elections.

The Greek Communities Associations concerned about the leader of Opposition in Albania

Edi Rama and his anti Hellenism sentiments

A relationship, however, within acceptable levels and that takes into account two basic things: the Hellenism and Orthodoxy. When in this Rama has negative performance we should not be giving our politically full support..

The leader of the Opposition in Albania rewards opponent of Archbishop Anastasios
It managed to return from Athens the chairman of SK Edi Rama, just arrives from the airport after the fourth wife Linda, pulled immediately and arrived at the home of Christo Fraseri, who became widely known in Albania since the war makes the asking Archbishop Anastasios removal from Albania.

The purpose of the visit was to the couple's wish for a day of Albanian literature (7 March) since, as indicated by leaving the house, the teacher is considered a model nation.

Why set aside the entire army of teachers and visited Christo Fraseri, the primary opponent of Archbishop Anastasios, the spiritual leader of Albanian and Hellene orthodox communities? Is a reasonable question for those watching closely the political and social life in Albania. Perhaps this is related to the attack of Fraseri, has unleashed last year to Archbishop Anastasios and Orthodoxy in general?

The chairman of SP, Edi Rama, is behind a series of actions, which failed to the Greek national interests. It is well known that he was the main opponent for not signing of the sea water agreement with Greece. He sent the case to the Constitutional Court, which annulled the agreement. Also, SP has left the Parliament and not passed to the Agreement on the Greek cemeteries. In the census popullation process, hi still does not get as far post.

We could add more vigorously anti-Hellenic performance by Rama. And all this is happening at a time when PASOK and Papandreou of Greece, helps SP of Edi Rama under international institutions to protest for human rights and voting process in Albania.

A relationship, however, within acceptable levels and that takes into account two basic things: the Hellenism and Orthodoxy. When in this Rama has negative performance we should not be giving our politically full support.. Injustice in this way the Greeks, our Orthodoxy, the Archbishop Anastasios, who cover us all with love and devotion and then ourselves.

These graphics are to read the thought and genuine leftists, not cloned. Others, let them see posts and ofikia .................................

see in greek.....

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Police identify four suspects over fatal DIAS shootings

Officers search for three ethnic Greeks from Russia and an Albanian fugitive

The two officers shot dead last week were members of the DIAS motorcycle riding squad.

Police are looking for three ethnic Greeks from Russia and an Albanian fugitive in connection to the fatal shooting of two young policemen in the Athens district of Rendi last week, sources told Kathimerini on Tuesday.

Officers believe that the gang, which opened fire on a team of motorcycle-riding DIAS policemen last Tuesday, is connected to a 32-year-old ethnic Greek from Russia who was arrested in Thebes, central Greece, in December.

The 32-year-old allegedly organized a series of armed robberies at post offices and on an armored truck in Athens. He was arrested on December 8 with two accomplices after they were spotted parked outside banks in the Livadia area, central Greece, in a stolen vehicle.

Last week’s shooting occurred after policemen chased a vehicle suspected of being involved in an armed robbery on a street kiosk. Sources said that police forensic experts found fingerprints in the boot of the car, which was later abandoned, that match those of a 35-year-old Albanian convicted thief who has breached the terms of his prison furlough.

The New York Times

Qaddafi’s Arms Bazaar, Slowly Exposed

Courtesy of Peter Danssaert/IPIS

Of the heads of state closely associated with the underground arms trade, Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi has long been a veritable case study. His deep pockets of oil revenue, combined with his ambitions to be a regional power broker, spiced with his on-and-off role as supporter of nationalist movements elsewhere, has made him a prominent and persistent figure in an often shadowy game.

Take a look at the photograph at the top of this post. It shows crates bearing the stenciled markings “Parts of Tractor.” Guess what is not inside. Tractor parts, unless you consider 107-millimeter Chinese high-explosive Katyusha rockets to be tractor parts. Notice as well the other stenciled print: “GSPLAJ.” That stands for Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, the official name of Libya under Colonel Qaddafi. These munitions were confiscated in Congo in 2007, found in the possession of a rebel group whose leader is on trial for war crimes.

Over the years, weapons have flowed into and out of Colonel Qaddafi’s Libya, sometimes openly and sometimes via subterfuge. His government helped arm Idi Amin for war and repression in Uganda, and sent weapons as well to Palestinian, Irish and African fighters. A Kremlin client when convenient, the colonel entered arms deals with the Soviet rulers of Moscow and with the clique of former K.G.B. officials who run Russia today. But the Kremlin is hardly alone in feeding the Libyan arms pipeline. Qaddafi’s government bought widely, inhaling arms from Western nations, too, and from China, and from former Socialist satellites.

The eruption of fighting in recent weeks, and the looting of many government arsenals, has provided fresh peeks at Libyan accumulations and the perils they can pose. The New York Times and the At War blog looked last week at the potential threats from the SA-7 man-portable air-defense systems now loose in Libya. [Read the Times article here and first two At War posts here and here]. Today, we present two interesting items about other sightings of Libyan arms in recent years, from sources and researchers who cover the arms trade, which provide insight into how Colonel Qaddafi has acquired his arsenal and used it, and with whom he has been engaged. The picture, if only partial, is not pretty.

New Allegations of Albanian Arms Shipped to Libya

We’ll come back to those tractor parts at the end of this post. First let’s hear from the Shekulli newspaper in Tirana, Albania, which published on Feb. 27 a set of new allegations about illegal arms movements to Libya. Shekulli’s article details the alleged shipment of a freighter’s worth of 82-millimeter mortar rounds last year from the vast Albanian government stockpiles to the port of Ras Lanuf, where fighting between Libyan rebels and Qaddafi loyalists has been under way for several days.

The article was researched and written by Gjergj Thanasi, an investigative reporter in Tirana who often covers the arms trade. It provides a rich view of what would appear to be Albanian complicity in dealing with known arms smugglers to move government surplus munitions to the Libyan military.

The deal is structured in a curious fashion, because in 2010, Libya was not under international sanctions barring it from participating in the arms trade. But the article alleges that a false end-user certificate was issued, and that the deal was assembled in part under the hand of Slobodan Tesic, a Serbian arms smuggler who is subject to a United Nations travel ban for helping to arm former President Charles Taylor of Liberia, who is now facing a war crimes trial in The Hague..............................continues.............

Davutoğlu calls for new Greek-Turkish 'paradigm'

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu (L) meets with his Greek counterpart, Dimitrios Droutsas, in Athens. AA photo

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu (L) meets with his Greek counterpart, Dimitrios Droutsas, in Athens. AA photo

Turkey does not perceive Greece as a threat and expects its Aegean neighbor to take a similar tack after decades of antagonism between the two countries, the Turkish foreign minister said Tuesday.

“We need a new paradigm in Turkish-Greek relations, a paradigm under which we can build a future together,” Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu told reporters while visiting Greece for preparatory talks for the upcoming Turkey-Greece High Level Strategic Council meeting, which will be held in Istanbul in July.

During his visit, Davutoğlu held meetings in Athens with Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou and Foreign Minister Dimitrios Droutsas.

Prior to the meeting, Davutoğlu voiced Ankara’s expectation for a “peaceful style” to dominate bilateral relations between Ankara and Athens. Speaking to reporters on his way to Athens, the foreign minister said he would emphasize this paradigm in his talks with Greek officials.

“We should evaluate our common history not in a confrontational way, but rather in a peaceful fashion,” he said.

Papandreou was the last high-level Greek official to visit Turkey, making surprisingly critical statements during his visit to Erzurum in January. In his remarks, Papandreou used the word “invader” for Turkey, speaking about the presence of the Turkish army in northern Cyprus. He said this approach, if continued, would keep Turkey out of the European Union.

Albanian Women to March against PM

Albania’s opposition Socialist MPs will hold a rally on Tuesday to protest what they call a culture of criminal impunity installed by Prime Minister Sali Berisha.

Besar Likmeta
Tirana “The rule of law starts with the equality of everyone before the justice system, being those officials, simple family men, or those who serve the regime,” Socialist MP Shegushe Ligori said in a statement on Sunday. “There is no justice in the Albania of Sali Berisha,” she added.

Ligori and other female Socialist MPs have distributed leaflets over the past week calling on women to march against the government in several towns on International Women's Day, accusing the government for the murder of four unarmed protestors during a January 21 rally.

A violent opposition protest on January 21, turned deadly when members of the Republican Guard opened fire on unarmed protestors, killing four and wounding more than a dozen.

The January 21 rally turned into a riot when several hundred marchers attacked the police barricade set up to protect the prime minister’s office, using sticks, stones and Molotov cocktails. Police responded with tear gas, water cannons and later with live ammunition.

Prosecutors are investigating the murders, the organisers of the protest and the violent demonstrators that attacked the police, and the incident has sparked the latest political crisis to hit Albania.

An even larger opposition rally is expected to be held on March 15, to mark the third anniversary of deadly blast at an ammunition depot near the village of Gerdec that killed 26 people and wounded more than three hundred.

Monday, March 7, 2011


Census in Albania

Stavros Tzimas

The next time the Greeks of Albania will be faced with a crucial for the existence and future of the process, this c
ensus, which has already announced by the government of our neighbor.
The last census was conducted in 1989, when even all the terrible shaded. Then, 59,000 Greeks "where declared", but far from reality this figure, given the circumstances bondage under which conducted the whole process.

Now, the Berisha government census planned for late April, with procedures generally meet international standards and among the questions will be asked citizens to declare ethnicity and religion. The information by Tirana probably will shift so later, coinciding with the planned municipal elections will take place in conditions of sharpening and the already burdened by the bloody events of the past weeks political atmosphere does not withstand such a test.

The messages, however, come from the neighbor in response to the census of concern, with extreme nationalist groups to engage in cultivation of primitive anti-Greek rhetoric. As in the case of an agreement on maritime zones, so far, the issue of census recorded an incredible raising sentiments of nationalism, to be removed from the questionnaire the question of nationality, which, however, the Albanians claim to be included in the census, which be done at this time in FYROM! Heard screams on the resurgence of Greek claims in Albania and made calls for the awakening of national consciousness, apparently because the enemy is just around the corner! The most worrying perhaps is that this issue has arrived as relentless domestic political rivalry and the weak of the government of Berisha, will hardly bear the weight of a census, for which some blamed for treason.

The question is what plans do the Greek foreign policy, to guarantee the Albanian side of the adherence to the procedures of the census to ensure the minority, even Brussels finance it.

What you said of course every Albanian citizen, and with our fellow countrymen who still remained in the neighbor on national and religious consciousness, is purely up to them. Athens can not monitor the remote machinations against the minority or the other, indifferently whistling to conduct our diplomats, throwing water in the mill of those who work for the decimation of Hellenism in Albania.


"Three main topics" in Belgrade-Priština talks

7 March 2011 | 15:10 | Source: Tanjug
BRUSSELS -- The first round of the talks between Belgrade and Priština will be held in Brussels March 8-9 with subsequent rounds being organized several times a month.

This will depending on the progress made, the EU announced on Monday.

According to a high-ranking EU official, there will be three main topics: regional cooperation, freedom of movement and rule of law.

The goal is to improve the life of the people, achieve better cooperation in the Balkans and move the region closer to the EU, the official stated.

The EU official mediating the talks will be Robert Cooper. His office will also host the negotiations.

The first meeting will focus simply on getting off to a good start. It will also be used to raise many issues and get the two sides thinking about them, the anonymous official said.

EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton will give an announcement after the meeting. The two teams will give their own statements on Wednesday.

The UN mission in Kosovo will not take part in the talks, but it will be invited when needed.

The Belgrade government named Borko Stefanović, an official of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as the head of its team, while the government in Priština appointed Deputy Prime Minister Edita Tahiri.
Four Greek military bases, "No Fly Zone" - will be involved and the Air Force fighter

Image The air bases in western Peloponnese (Andravida, Araxos) of Actium in Epirus and Crete (Souda) will form the basis of NATO forces in the event of a zone of exclusion in Libya along with five other airports in Italy and three in Spain.

As reported safe sources both the Air Force and the Defence of the four bases are ready to host the NATO aircraft at any time. If it is decided by NATO air power transfer from the central and northern Europe and the U.S. within a few hours will allow the activation of existing projects.

What is certain is that the mission will participate and Greek fighter jets if requested, as well as other members of the Alliance. Something that is obvious from the moment not enough air power carried by two U.S. aircraft carriers.

Meanwhile, a new air strikes against Libya in positions dissidents went today to the Gaddafi regime Asthigia the Misratah and Ras Lanouf with aircraft Su-24 and Su-22.

At the same time the rebels say they are going to occupy the city of Sirte, Gaddafi's birthplace, while government forces are on track to Benghazi, the second largest city and a stronghold of the rebels in the east. All ills that the week starts tomorrow, will determine the actions as both sides are clearly faced with logistical problems. Anyone solve it left a winner.

Balkan paradoxes

Macedonia Closer To Postponing Spring Census

Macedonia may soon join neighbouring Albanian and Serbia and postpone its head count, planned for April, as country readies for early elections.

Sinisa Jakov Marusic

The head of Macedonia's Census Commission, Vesna Janevska, says postponing the census is a viable option if the forthcoming general election campaign is deemed likely to interfere with the outcome.

"It would not be good if the census and an election campaign coincided," Janevska said on Thursday.

"If elections are held in June, the campaign would not start till May, which means the two events would not coincide, but if elections are set for May, there will be interference."

The centre-right government of VMRO DPMNE and the opposition Social Democrats have not agreed an exact date for the general election.

Nikola Gruevski's government initially opted for a mid-April date but the opposition insist on mid-June as the earliest date possible if elections are to be fair.

Some argue that polls in April are practically impossible, given the procedures that need to take place beforehand. Some suggest both sides may find middle ground in a May date.

Janevska’s deputy, Albulmenaf Bexheti, went further than his boss, saying that whether or not there were elections, the census would have to be postponed anyway.

This is because the commission has allegedly not had enough time to train all the staff tasked with collecting the data. Estimates are that 9,000 people are needed.

Janevskia, on the other hand, maintains everything is running on schedule. Last week, she announced a second call for staff, after too few ethnic Albanians answered the first call.

But Bexheti said this was too late. “The call itself will last for a week and additional time is needed for training. That cannot be done until April 1 so the census will have to be postponed,” he insisted.

A government spokesman, Martin Martinovski, said the government had not yet officially considered postponing the census.
If it decides to do so, Macedonia will be third country in the region to delay a count.

Late in February, Albania postponed its population census from April to November, citing May 8 local elections as the reason for the decision.

Serbia has also postponed its planned census, from April to October. Belgrade said it had insufficient funds to carry out the count on time.

The last census in Macedonia took place in 2002. Results showed that 64.2 per cent of the population of about 2 million were Macedonian and 25.2 per cent were ethnic Albanian. Roma, Turks, Serbs and other minorities made up the rest.

The census took place a year after the signing of the 2001 Ohrid Peace Accord, which ended a short-lived armed conflict in the country between ethnic Albanian insurgents and the security forces. The Ohrid deal guaranteed more rights for ethnic Albanians.

Whether this year’s census reveals major changes in the country's ethnic makeup remains to be seen.

Some Albanian opposition parties say they fear the census will be abused in order to lower the real number of Albanians in the country. Some Macedonians, meanwhile, fear that the census will show a large increase in Albanian numbers.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

U.S. - European Union - Italy - Turkey etc. penetrating the area ... in Albania


The Americans ... an intermediary role in trying to bridge between Berisha - Rama,
the Greek Government shows unable to monitor developments, in Northern Epirus, left to their fate, "looking for" role ...

• While the Deputy Foreign Minister of the United States James Steinberg on an official visit to Albania in an attempt to bridge the gap between Berisha and opposition leader Edi Rama, the government finances religious communities in the country, wishing thereby to show the European Union to respect human and religious rights of citizens, paving the way for its accession to it.

And indeed, a very critical period, since May will be held local elections in the neighboring country, the long-awaited census will be finished in November, but the big economic and geopolitical issues relating to almost all countries of Southeast Europe remain.

In contrast to all the countries have vital interests in Albania, the Greek side keep worrying as indifferent. Shows unable to react to the ongoing challenges of Albanians, but to defend its interests in the region, which are many, but mostly left unprotected Northern Epirus, seeking their role in development................

see more:

Albania's Socialists plan fresh anti-government protests


TIRANA, Albania -- The main opposition Socialist Party threatened on Friday (March 4th) to hold a new wave of protests calling for early elections, starting with one on Tuesday.

The opposition accuses the cabinet of corruption and manipulation of the 2009 parliamentary elections.

A January 21st anti-government rally in Tirana ended in clashes with police and the deaths of four people.

Dozens Rally Against Albania's Interior Minister

Dozens of young Socialist Party supporters held a rally on Friday seeking the resignation of Minister of Interior Lulzim Basha.

Besar Likmeta

The protesters gathered at noon in front of Basha’s office chanting sharply-worded slogans and accusing the minister for the death of four anti-government protesters during the January 21 unrest.

A violent opposition protest on January 21 turned deadly when members of the Republican Guard opened fire on unarmed protestors, killing four and wounding more than a dozen.

The January 21 rally turned into a riot when several hundred marchers attacked the police barricade set up to protect the prime minister’s office, using sticks, stones and Molotov cocktails. Police responded with tear gas, water cannons and later with live ammunition.

Prosecutors are investigating the murders, the organisers of the protest and the violent demonstrators that attacked the police.

Basha is tipped to be the ruling party's candidate for mayor of Tirana in the May local elections, a post currently held by opposition leader Edi Rama.