Tirana Govt Funds Ethnic Albanian Council in Montenegro

Faik Nika, the president of the Albanian National Council, said on Friday that the Albanian government will give financial support for the first time to assist the running of his organisation and its office in the municipality of Plav.

Nika told Montenegrin media the Albanian government has recently made three very important decisions for the Albanian community in Montenegro.

"They made the decision to abolish work permits for Albanians from Montenegro working in Albania. There is also the decision to open an Albanian consulate in the [Albanian-majority] municipality of Ulcinj and the decision to financially support the National Council of Albanians in Montenegro," he said.

"This is the result of intensive cooperation between the Albanian National Council, the Albanian Embassy in Podgorica and the government of Albania," he added.

The Albanian National Council was established in 2008 and, like other national councils representing the interests of minorities in the country, is financed from the Montenegrin state budget.

A report by the Montenegrin government's Ministry for Human and Minority rights in 2018 said the state gave 600,000 euros in financial support to the country's three national councils (Albanian, Bosniak and Serbian).

Under Montenegrin law, the national councils are independent bodies, mostly funded by the state to promote the cultural heritage of the Albanian, Bosniak and Serbian ethnic communities.

Albanian Foreign Minister Gent Cakaj said on Friday that the National Council plays a substantial role in the representation and empowerment of Albanians in Montenegro.

"The government of Albania's decision to support the Albanian National Council is not an isolated and individual act. This act marks only...

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