Latest News from Albania

Reunion of JHA ministers of SEECP countries in Bucharest

Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) ministers of the countries participating in the South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) reunite on Wednesday and Thursday in Bucharest at the Parliament Palace to tackle the regional cooperation on illegal migration and human trafficking, police collaboration, fight against corruption, and enhancement of judicial cooperation.

Albania’s Beaches Dirtiest in Europe, Report Says

The report, entitled European Bathing Water Quality in 2013, said 8.2 per cent of the bathing waters in Albania were classified non-compliant with minimum standards.

"Albania’s rate of non-compliance is comparable to when other countries reported their bathing water quality for the first time," the EEA noted.

Eurosceptic Victories Cause Concern in Albania

Officials in Albania are mulling the results of the European Parliamentary elections, which saw anti-EU, anti-establishment, parties triumph in Britain and France and poll strongly in some other countries.

As a result, parties opposed to the European project have roughly doubled their seats in the assembly.

Albania PM Blamed For Drug Trafficking Scourge

“Albanians have gathered here against a dangerous enemy, which seeks to destroy our freedoms and deny us our European dream,” the chairman of the Democratic Party, Lulzim Basha, told supporters.

“This enemy is narcotics trafficking, which in the last six months, sponsored by the drug barons, has reached dangerous levels,” he added.

Copenhagen Choir to stage humanitarian concert Thursday

BELGRADE - As part of its Balkan tour, the Copenhagen Music Choir, directed by Ole Reuss Schmidt, will stage a humanitarian concert at the Slavija Theatre in Belgrade on Thursday evening.

The choir will continue its international tour by May 30 in Croatia, Montenegro, Albania and Macedonia, Batric Zarkovic, Slavija Theatre founder and director, has said.

Albania Siezes Ship With Contraband Cigarettes

The cargo ship Era-1, which was sailing from Greece for the port of Bar in Montenegro, had sought temporary shelter on May 14 from bad weather in Albania’s southern port of Vlora.

After the weather improved on Friday, the ship, which has a Tanzanian flag and a Ukrainian crew, left port without seeking permission from the port authorities, raising suspicions about its cargo.

Narcotics officers make their biggest-ever cannabis haul

A photograph of the inside of the truck, released by Greek Police headquarters.

The Greek police on Monday issued an announcement hailing the narcotics squad’s biggest cannabis bust ever after a 700 kilograms of the drug was found inside a concealed compartment in a truck that had entered Greece from Albania and is believed to have been headed to Germany.

World Bank Approves $100m Loan for Albania

The World Bank has approved a loan designed to support Albania’s efforts to reduce the impact of the global financial crisis on the local financial sector.

2 tons of cannabis seized in Albania

2 tons of cannabis seized in Albania

VLORE -- The Albanian police on Thursday confiscated two tons of cannabis and arrested two suspects.

The drugs were seized in the port town of Vlore, and were meant to be sold in Italy.

According to the police, the shipment was hidden inside a vehicle that was to be transported to Italy in a dinghy.

Albanian Roma Seek Protection Against Eviction

A group of Roma organizations on Wednesday presented Albania's parliament with a proposed amendment to the law on the legalization and urbanization of illegal construction, which would protect Roma camps from forced evictions.

Albania Economic Reforms on Track, IMF Says

IMF economist Nadeem Ilahi, who led a team from the IMF visiting Tirana from April 30 to May 13, on Tuesday said the country's fiscal performance was in line with programme targets in the first quarter of 2014.

“The authorities remain committed to further fiscal consolidation in 2015 in order to begin to reduce public debt as envisaged under their economic program,” Ilahi noted.

Albania Arrests Group Smuggling People to US

Albanian police said the four-month investigation was aided by exchanges of information between the office of the prosecutor for serious crimes and US law enforcement agencies.

“Fifteen suspects have been detained while an international warrant has been issued for another one,” the general directorate of police said.

Suspected Drug Trafficker Crash-Lands Plane in Albania

The Albanian Ministry of Interior said the pilot of the plane, Girgio Riformato, had been arrested after he crash-landed his single-engine Piper on Sunday on the beach at Divjaka, 50 kilometres south of Tirana.

In the same area, police also arrested an Albanian, Saimir Bajramaj, after they found 460 kilograms of marijuana and €27,000 in his vehicle.

IEA Denies Albania Breached Iran Oil Embargo

“The IEA did not suggest that Albania broke sanctions on Iran and any report that says otherwise needs to run a correction,” Magdalena Sanocka, a spokesperson for the IEA, said.

Sanocka said its report only mentioned Albania as a temporary destination for an Iranian oil tanker, which eventually unloaded its cargo elsewhere.