Latest News from Albania

Albanian Quake Probe Hones in on Sub-Standard Concrete

Three independent construction engineers consulted by BIRN, however, advised caution when drawing any definitive conclusions on the reasons why particular buildings collapsed.

'Not construction grade'

Scenes from the Albanian coastal city of Durres after a 6.4 magnitude earthquake. Photo: BIRN/Geri Emiri

EU official: North Macedonia ready for membership talks

The European Union's top enlargement official on Wednesday held out new hope that the block will start accession talks within months with North Macedonia and Albania, whose bids were frustrated last year.

Albania Expels Two More Iranian Diplomats

Acting Foreign Minister of Albania Gent Cakaj, December 13, 2019. Photo: LSA

Cakaj said both has been declared "persona non grata for conducting activities not related to their status and to the principles of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations". They had been requested to leave Albania immediately, Cakaj added.

Return to Kosovo: The Serbs Who Re-Embraced Their Hometown

But in the recent past, Prizren has not always been such a problem-free place for Serbs. Out of a pre-war population of around 10,000 Serbs, Jevtic is one of only about 20 who returned after the conflict to live in the city today.

Greek Investors Cede Top Spot in Albania

Greek holdings in Albania have shrunk rapidly, bringing to an end decades of dominance amid financial crisis, homegrown Albanian ambition and a difficult investment climate.

Albanian President Blocks PM’s Anti-Defamation Laws

Albanian President Ilir Meta speaking to the media in Tirana on 20 December 2019. Photo: Malton Dibra/LSA

The new laws "could place the Albania on the brink of authoritarianism and endanger its [EU] integration and the very existence of democracy in the country," Meta wrote in the explanatory note accompanying his decree.

Bosnia’s Courts Convict More Migrant Smugglers

More than 90 per cent of judgments were pronounced on the basis of plea agreements. Sanctions ranged from conditional sentences to three years in prison. Ancillary penalties of several dozen thousands euros were also imposed and the proceeds of migrant smuggling worth over 10,000 euros were seized, along with several vehicles used to execute the crimes.

Klaus Iohannis: Romania contributes, with enthusiasm and full involvement, in shaping of EU future

AGERPRES special correspondent Loredana Ciobanu reports: President Klaus Iohannis said on Tuesday at the annual meeting of the Parliamentary Group of the Christian Social Union in Bavaria (CSU) that Romania represents an important partner within the EU and our country contributes to "the shaping of the European Union's future." Romania's president tackled varied topics, ranging from the EU trad

City diplomacy

Ioannina Mayor Moses Elisaf has taken the baton from his former Thessaloniki counterpart Yiannis Boutaris in "city diplomacy," having recently conducted a series of important meetings in Albania as part of an initiative to promote his city and develop closer ties with the neighboring country.

Adrift? The Western Balkans in 2020

The optimism and hope of the 2000s crashed to a halt around the same time as the economic crisis engulfing the Eurozone spread to the Balkans during 2009. Regional economies stumbled as the European economic engine spluttered and struggled.

Kosovo Tries Officials for Fake War Veteran Applications

Sanije Rexha and Kushtrim Balaj, both former officials of the Division of Internal and External Control at Kosovo's Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare, went on trial for abuse of office at Pristina Basic Court on Monday in a case connected to a major scandal over fraudulent applications for the official status of verified Kosovo Liberation Army war veteran.

North Macedonia elects caretaker government after Zaev resigns

North Macedonia's parliament on Friday approved a new caretaker government under the country's former interior minister, after Zoran Zaev resigned as prime minister ahead of previously agreed early elections on April 12.

Under a deal made by major political parties, the caretaker government will be headed by Oliver Spasovski, who served in Zaev's center-left administration.

Turkey Hails ‘Gulenist’ Deportation From Albania as MIT ‘Success’

Albania has denied that the Turkish state intelligence agency, the MIT, was involved in the extradition on January 1 of an alleged supporter of the exiled Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen.

Teacher Harun Celik was arrested in Albania in July 2019 while apparently trying to travel from Kazakhstan to Canada via Tirana on fake documents.

Zaev steps down ahead of April 12 vote

The prime minister of North Macedonia submitted his resignation Friday, paving the way for a new caretaker Cabinet to be named in order to organize a snap election.

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