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ATA News from Albania, 96-10-20

Albanian Telegraphic Agency Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Albanian Telegraphic Agency (ATA) Home Page at <http://www.telpress.it/ata>

Albanian Telegraphic Agency

CONTENTS

  • [01] POLLS FOR LOCAL ELECTIONS START ALL OVER ALBANIA
  • [02] COMMISSION SOCIALIST DEPUTY CHAIRMEN NOT PRESENT TO WITHDRAW MATERIAL BASIS FOR VOTING PROCESS
  • [03] ALBANIAN PRESIDENT VOTES FOR LOCAL ELECTIONS
  • [04] ALBANIAN AUTHORITIES VOTE
  • [05] VOTING FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENT IN BERAT STARTS
  • [06] SPA SECRETARY GENERAL VOTES FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENT
  • [07] ACTS OF VIOLENCE BY SP SUPPORTERS AND LEFT OPPOSITION REPRESENTATIVES IN POLLING COMMISSIONS
  • [08] INFORMATION ON VOTING PARTICIPATION
  • [09] POLLS RUNNING SMOOTHLY, MINOR IRREGULARITIES AVOIDED - PCEC
  • [10] NO USE OF FORCE OR SHOOTING IN POLLING STATIONS - Interior Ministry
  • [11] PARTICIPATION IN POLLS IN SOME DISTRICTS IN ALBANIA
  • [12] PROTEST OF DEMOCRATIC PARTY ON SOME ACTS IN SOME POLLING STATIONS IN KAMZA MUNICIPALITY
  • [13] SOCIALIST ACTIVIST IN LUSHNJA INJURES DEMOCRATIC PARTY REPRESENTATIVE
  • [14] PARTICIPATION IN ALBANIA'S POLLS UNTIL 14.00
  • [15] 51 PER CENT ALBANIAN ELIGIBLE VOTERS HAVE VOTED UNTIL 16.00
  • [16] OPPOSITION PROTESTS AGAINST IRREGULARITIES
  • [17] "ALBANIA"-INTERVIEW -- Getting to know OSCE observers present in the elctions of May 26
  • [18] NO IRREGULARITIES IN BIG CITIES - Republican Party
  • [19] IN GENERAL ELECTIONS ARE GOING ON WELL - Ruffy
  • [20] DP CANDIDATES IN CENTRAL ALBANIA ON THE VERGE OF VICTORY
  • [21] TWO OBSERVERS OPEN TWO POLLING BOXES
  • [22] VOTERS' PARTICIPATION IN ALBANIA'S POLLS UNTIL 20.30
  • [23] REPORT OF ALBANIAN INTERIOR MINISTRY ABOUT SP PROTESTS
  • [24] TIRANA VOTES AGAIN FOR THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY
  • [25] CERRIK: DP CANDIDATE FOR MAYOR WINS 70 PERCENT OF VOTES

  • [01] POLLS FOR LOCAL ELECTIONS START ALL OVER ALBANIA

    TIRANA, OCT 20 (ATA)- By Keida Kostreci, Polls for local government elections started all over Albania on Sunday at 8:00 a.m. local time (0600 GMT).

    Over two million Albanians are voting today for 64 mayors and 320 commune chairmen, to be chosen among the candidates put forward by 26 Albanian parties.

    All the parties closed the electoral campaign on Friday. During the voting hours until 9.00 p.m., when the polls close, no propaganda material will be allowed in the polling stations. Also, the electoral commission members will not be allowed to hold party emblems or carry out propaganda activity.

    The parties participating in the elections will follow everything that has to do with the elections on the computer networks installed in the party headquarters.

    A wider computer network is as well at the disposal of the PCEC, which is also connected with all centers through telephones.

    Some 400 foreign observers from the Council of Europe, European Parliament, the U.S. Democratic National Institute , the U.S. International Republican Institute, the Italian government, observers from Greek, Turkish, Austrian parliaments, and observers invited by the political parties themselves will monitor today's local elections, alongside the Albanian observers.

    The Albanian authorities, including President Sali Berisha and Speaker of Parliament Pjeter Arbnori have assured the Albanian public as well as friends from the world over that the elections will be free and fair.

    In the July 26,1992 elections, the Socialist Party won in a larger number of communes than the Democratic Party, but the latter won in the municipalities of the major cities like Tirana, Durres, Shkoder, Fier and Vlore. lm/k

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [02] COMMISSION SOCIALIST DEPUTY CHAIRMEN NOT PRESENT TO WITHDRAW MATERIAL BASIS FOR VOTING PROCESS

    TIRANA, OCT 19 (ATA)- By A. Frasheri, Socialist deputy chairmen of several polling station commissions have not been present for the withdrawal of the necessary material basis for the voting process, at the municipality commission.

    "The PCEC has been informed that in several cases, in the withdrawal of the material basis by the polling station commission presidencies, the deputy chairmen of these commissions have been absent," the PCEC announces.

    On the same problem the PCEC received on October 18 a complaint signed by the SP secretary, Namik Dokle, in which the SP presidency complains against "several illegal procedures of the commission".

    In his protest Dokle "accuses the Local Government Secretariat and its head, Njazi Kosovrasti, of issuing instructions to avoid the deputy chairmen from the process of obtaining the material basis".

    The protest also accuses the PCEC chairman, Nestor Tereska, of becoming an accomplice at the beginning of the manipulations by turning a deaf ear to the above accusation, and in order to evade his responsibility, Tereska, in his meetings with foreign observers has created the alibi that the commission PS deputy chairmen and members have not carried out their task to take charge of the material basis".

    The protest of Mr. Dokle dates back to October 18, when the withdrawal of the material basis for the polling stations had not yet started.

    The PCEC chairman, Nestor Tereska, said that all the commission members condemned the act of Mr. Dokle, considering it absurd and irresponsible.

    One of the PCEC members said that:"seeing the date the Dokle's complaint was issued, the SP uncovered involuntarily several of its plans, which it began to apply on October 19, one day before the elections, to create the idea of irregularities".

    All the various foreign observers teams, in their numerous meetings conducted, have made evident that the performance of the central commission and government has been very good and consider this a full guarantee for fair elections, conform the Albanian electoral law.

    The Centre Pole representative in the PCEC, Pajtim Bello, regarded Dokle's complaint as completely wrong. Also the SP representatives in the PCEC criticised this irresponsible act of Mr. Dokle. One of the SP members in the commission said:"Dokle's acts are not worth considering and discussing".

    All the commission members, also the socialist ones, considered unnecessary both a long meeting of discussion on Dokle's complaint and a respond to this complaint.

    Several PCEC members said that "It seems as though Dokle is not aware of the presidency's decisions". They said that :"It seems that even the seminar held several days ago by the SP presidency aimed at instructing the deputy chairmen on today's act".

    The PCEC discussed Dokle's complaint in its meeting, and through a statement, signed by chairman Nestor Tereska, deputy chairman Besnik Baraj and secretary Fiqiri Kupe, reaffirms that the instruction issued by the PCEC for this purpose should be rigorously implemented.

    "If one of the members of the polling station commission presidency is absent, he should be replaced immediately, by decision of the commission, preserving the government coalition-opposition relation and the materials should be withdrawn at any cost," the PCEC says in its announcement.

    The announcement stresses that "the commission reports that, anyone who becomes an obstacle in the electoral process will bear responsibility according to the penal and administrative provisions of the law "On the elections to the local government bodies".lm/k

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [03] ALBANIAN PRESIDENT VOTES FOR LOCAL ELECTIONS

    TIRANA, OCT 20 (ATA)-By Flora Nikolla, President of the Republic Sali Berisha, once again, on the day of the elections for the local government, called on all the Albanian electors today "to vote freely and choose the best candidature and alternative for the local government determining in this way the destiny of development of their quarter, village, commune or municipality".

    Voting with his wife in Tirana Berisha told the mass media representatives that: "I invite all the Albanian electors to devote to Albania today one hour from their precious time because Albania needs an hour of their precious time". kei/lm/k

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [04] ALBANIAN AUTHORITIES VOTE

    TIRANA, OCT 20 (ATA)- By P.Shuteriqi, A.Keko, Chairman of the Albanian Democratic Party Tritan Shehu, accompanied by his wife, voted at the polling station 57 in Tirana, today.

    After the voting Shehu expressed the belief that in today's elections for the local government bodies the Democratic Party will vote convincingly, by majority of free votes.

    I am optimistic that the Tirana citizens will know to choose the Democratic Party alternative, as the best alternative, Shehu said.

    The voting procedure in this station is also followed by foreign observers, Ms. Doris Pack, head of the European Parliamentary delegation, by observers of the U.S. embassy in Tirana and others.

    Speaker of Parliament Pjeter Arbnori with his wife and Prime Minister Aleksander Meksi with his wife voted in the polling station 140 in Tirana.

    In this station the electors are voting for the Tirana city mayor and municipal council. kei/lm/k

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [05] VOTING FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENT IN BERAT STARTS

    BERAT, OCT 20 (ATA)- By I.Manka,

    The information available in the Berat prefecture from the the district municipality and communes it turns out that the voters' lists include 83.864 electors eligible to vote for the local government today.

    Under the electoral law, some 297 secret booths and 381 ballot boxes have been installed.

    Alongside voting for the district council and nine communes, two municipalities will be voted today, instead of one in the past four years. The municipality of Ura Vajgurore is a new municipality for the next four years.

    Today Berat rejoices over the wedding of 29 couples and deplores the death of only five, aging 70-78. kei/lm/k

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [06] SPA SECRETARY GENERAL VOTES FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENT

    TIRANA, OCT 20 (ATA)- By S. Sharrexhi, The Socialist Party Secretary General, Rexhep Mejdani, with his wife, voted at the polling station 26 in Tirana today.

    After casting the ballot, Mejdani told the reporters present:"I have only one wish: that today's elections be free and fair". kei/lm

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [07] ACTS OF VIOLENCE BY SP SUPPORTERS AND LEFT OPPOSITION REPRESENTATIVES IN POLLING COMMISSIONS

    TIRANA, OCT 20 (ATA)- The Democratic Party has filed a protest to the Permanent Central Electoral Commission, PCEC, regarding an act of violence committed by two Socialist Party representatives in the Kruja town.

    The protest says that :"Last night, Iljaz Maluka, secretary of a polling station in the Kruja town, has been twice asked by two SP supporters to withdraw from the polling commission, or 'otherwise you will be exterminated'".

    The DP protests against threats and other violent acts various people are committing against the polling station commissions.

    * * * The DPA spokesman reports that in the Lekaj village of Lushnja district as well as in the Kamshica village, Bubullime commune, the socialist deputy chairman of the polling commission has not been present in the polling station .

    The spokesman says that socialist representatives have been trying in many polling stations to harm the voting process.

    * * * The DP Press and Information Office reports that in the Shengjini commune, Lezha district, the representative of the Centre Pole (The Social- democratic Party and the Democratic Alliance Party) has offended and later hit with a fist the chairman of the polling station.

    The incident took place also in the presence of foreign observers.

    * * * The DP Press and Information office reports that in the Vukatane village, Guri i Zi commune, Shkoder district, in the polling station 7, the chairman of the polling station has hit with a fist by a SP member, who later left to an unknown destination. a.ke/pas/lm/k

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [08] INFORMATION ON VOTING PARTICIPATION

    TIRANA, OCT 20 (ATA)- Until 11:00 a.m. the participation in the polls in Shkoder, on a district scale, was over 30 per cent while in the Malesi e Madhe district 25 per cent.

    The participation in the Lezha district polls has been 25 per cent. The same is the participation in the Korca district.

    In the Pogradec district the participation is 28 per cent, and in the Kolonja district 20 per cent.

    Some 30 percent of electors have voted in Saranda until 13.30.

    Tirana, Vlora and Durres are reported to have a smooth voting process, but no figure has yet been defined. Foreign and local observers are watching the voting process. kei/lm/k

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [09] POLLS RUNNING SMOOTHLY, MINOR IRREGULARITIES AVOIDED - PCEC

    TIRANA, OCT 20 (ATA)- The permanent Central Electoral Commission (PCEC) has adopted all measures to correct the irregularities noticed on the polling day. The irregularities have been made known to the PCEC and it has taken measures to correct them.

    The PCEC intervened in the Krraba commune, where the name of the socialist deputy chairman of a polling station, because of A delay in the submission of documents, had been replaced with the name of a Republican Party member. Through consensus the PCEC solved the problem securing the participation of the socialist deputy chairman in this polling station.

    The PCEC also intervened and corrected an error in the electoral lists, in which several names were recorded both in the polling station 241 and in the polling station 249 in Tirana. The PCEC blocked the voting of these people in one of the above stations. This irregularity was created because of the inaccurate administrative distribution.

    In its opinion polls in Tirana the pluralist group, which examined these irregularities, noticed that the situation was calm and the voting fair.

    The PCEC has been announced by party sources of several irregularities and the PCE is taking measures to eliminate and clarify them. pas/lm/k

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [10] NO USE OF FORCE OR SHOOTING IN POLLING STATIONS - Interior Ministry

    TIRANA, OCT 20 (ATA)- The SP press reports alleging use of force and shooting with fire weapons in the vicinity of several polling stations in Balldren of Lezha, in Rrogozhina and Cerma of Lushnja, are false, the Interior Ministry spokesman reports.

    The data available in this ministry and the verification carried out show that no such incidents have taken place in the vicinity of any of these polling stations or elsewhere and that the polls are running normally, the spokesman says.

    Polls for the local government are being held all over Albania today. kei/lm/k

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [11] PARTICIPATION IN POLLS IN SOME DISTRICTS IN ALBANIA

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 9ATA) - Until 14.00, preliminary reports reaching the Permanent Central Election Commission show that 55 per cent of the total eligible voters in Fier district have voted, in Durres 45 per cent, in Lushnja 55 per cent, in Kavaja 65 per cent, in the Shijak Municipality 50 per cent, in Malesi e Madhe district 60 per cent and in the district of Elbasan 50 per cent of the voters. ssh/xh/sh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [12] PROTEST OF DEMOCRATIC PARTY ON SOME ACTS IN SOME POLLING STATIONS IN KAMZA MUNICIPALITY

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 (ATA) - The democratic Party protests energetically about some acts which have occurred in the Kamza Municipality, a small town near Tirana, DP press and information office reports.

    The Socialist deputy chairman and the representative of the Agrarian Party, member of the election commission in the polling station in Valias, has exerted pressure on voters and time and again has openly called on people to vote for SP.

    The SP candidate for mayor in Kamza, Fran Gjini, goes from one polling station to another accompanied by 20-30 SP activists and pressurizes people and DP observers.

    The Democratic Party asks an immediate intervention of the Central Election Commission for the elimination of these phenomena.ssh/kled/xh/sh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [13] SOCIALIST ACTIVIST IN LUSHNJA INJURES DEMOCRATIC PARTY REPRESENTATIVE

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 (ATA) - An activist of the Socialist Party Pal Ndreka, in the village Bishqethem, Lushnja district, Southwestern Albania, has wounded a representative of the Democratic Party in the election commission, Ferik Veliu, DP press and information office reports.

    At 14.00 Ndreka family went to vote (Pal Ndreka, Llamba Ndreka and their son Altin Ndreka.) During the election procedure they exchanged words with Ferik Veliu, DP member, and working with election commission. During a quarrel, Pal Ndreka stabbed Ferik Veliu in the leg.

    The injured is now in the hospital, out of danger, whereas the author of the crime was taken by public order forces.

    The DP protests energetically for this open manifestation of violence. ssh/kled/xh/sh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [14] PARTICIPATION IN ALBANIA'S POLLS UNTIL 14.00

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 (ATA) - According to reports that have reached the Central Election Commission, participation of voters in the polls until 14.00 was as follows:
    Berat 48 %      Korce 41 %               Mallakaster 45 %
    Bulqize 45 %	Kavaje 70 %         	 Mirdita 43 %
    Delvine 38 %	Kurbini 22 %        	 Peqin 55 %
    Devoll 33 %	Kucove 30 %         	 Permet 42 %
    Diber 49 %	Kruja 45 %          	 Pogradec 49 %
    Durres 47 %	Kukesi 60 %         	 Puka 43 %
    Elbasan 53 %	Lezha 45 %          	 Tirane 47 %
    Erseka 47 %	Lushnja 54 %        	 Tropoje 32 %
    Fier 48 %	Librazhdi 46 %      	 Shkoder 54 %
    Gramsh 45 %	Mati 52 %           	 Vlore 46 %
    Hasi 43 %	Malesia e Madhe 76 %	 Saranda 35 %
    

    On the basis of the vote in the districts, it comes out that until 14.00 about 42 per cent of the voters have cast their ballots. xh/sh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [15] 51 PER CENT ALBANIAN ELIGIBLE VOTERS HAVE VOTED UNTIL 16.00

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 (ATA) - By M Allushi: Fifty one per cent of the eligible voters in the polls throughout Albania had voted until 16.00, DP Chief of Organization Mirush Mati told ATA. kled/xh/sh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [16] OPPOSITION PROTESTS AGAINST IRREGULARITIES

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 (ATA) - The permanent Central Election Commission has received protests from various opposition electoral subjects against some irregularities during the polls.

    SP has protested against the fact that the announcement of the commission of the polling station in the commune of Krraba, central Albania, is not made 10 days prior to the election day, but on Oct. 19. This, says the protest of SP, is made with the aim of leaving out of the polling station commission the SP representatives.

    Whereas SP secretary for Public Relations, Pandeli Majko says in a protest to PCEC that "the Fier town hall has not adopted measures to secure the material basis regarding the secrecy of the documents and that the materials of the polls are being kept mainly in the houses of commission members."

    A protest has been sent to the PCEC by the Secretary General of the Democratic Alliance Party, Arben Imami. According to him, the election commission chairwoman in the No 91 polling station, has not given the voters' lists to other commission members to see or work with them, as well as some irregularities in polling stations of the students.

    According to rules in the PCEC, Imami has not the right to address his protest to the PCEC. This right is entitled to other people appointed by the Centre Pole electoral subject. Whereas while presenting these opinions, Mr Imami speaks in the name of the Democratic Alliance Party.

    The PCEC lists have not registered any electoral subject with such a name, but this party is included in the electoral subject named the Centre Pole.

    These protests will be examined by the PCEC on the basis of reports and observations by the respective election commissions.

    Two press releases from the SP offices protest against violations in various districts of Albania until 13.30.

    SP claims that in 2-3 polling stations in Kurbin, the police commander Preng Lala had used force to bring out of these polling stations the socialists Sulejman Aliu and Asllan Tafa, who had certificates for the polls according to the law.

    At 11.00 hrs, in the No 2 polling station of the municipality of Durres, SP claims that a person has hit the election commission deputy chairman, Kristaq Goda.

    The SP report says that the commission chairman had not appeared until 8.00 in the No 4 polling station of the Fier municipality. A night before he had taken the ballots.

    SP claimed that in the No 8 polling station in Tresh village, Lezha district, the election material basis was placed in the house of the chairman of the election commission, Zef Vuka, an act which is contrary to the law./kled/xh/sh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [17] "ALBANIA"-INTERVIEW

    Getting to know OSCE observers present in the elctions of May 26

    ALBANIA OF '70 IMPRESSED ME

    Tue Magnussen, 41, comes from Denmark and he was an old friend of Albania during dictator Hoxha's time. He still keeps coming to Albania. He delt a lot with comunism and marxism-leninism affairs, but recently he deals with human rights and freedoms in former communist countries. In the elections of May 26 he was an OSCE observer, ODIHR's office. "I met Enver Hoxha, he gave me a book, as far as I remember it was 32 Selected Works. Albania'e developement of '70 impressed me. I visited Elbasani Combine Mill and in its guest book I wrote: "This is a great and a generous help of China for the Albanian People". Magnussen was never an ODIHR's observer except the May elections in Albania. While being interviewed he neither confirmed nor negated being a Sigurimi co-worker.

    Yesterday, he was invited to "Albania" paper and gave the following interview:

    -Mr Magnussen, you are an old friend of Albania. What are your impressions about this country?

    -I think, it is difficult to say this in a few words, but I think there were reasons to be impressed by the developments in Albania after the liberation from the Italian and German fascists. Later on, when I was in Albania, during the '70, Albania was living the called socialist period. At that time I was impressed by Albania's development, because the economic development of the country was good. But, later on, after the democratic processes and information was available I got to understand that there were persecution and repression against the Albanian citizens.

    - You visited Albania times ago, ang once you met dictator Hoxha?

    - Yes, I met him in 1977. It coincided with the 20th anniversary of Tirana University. He gave me one of his books. As far as I remember the 32 Selected Work.

    - Our newspaper published a document that shows that you are an old visitor of Albania. Official Sources say that you were in the service of the former Secret Police, Sigurimi.

    - I am conscious that the facsimile published in your paper is nothing else, but just a passport with the name of my father and dates I came to Albania and left. I can see that at that time, my pass was copied, letters writen by my relatives and friends were read and taken notes, but I consider it a violation of human rights.

    - Let's repeat once again. Official Sources say you were in the service of Sigurimi.

    - It mey be a kind of critisism towards Sigurimi, but I declare that I have done no warm to my country or anything that would favour the former regime in Albania. I only wrote some articles about Albanian history.

    - You did not write only articles about the Albanian history, did you?

    - This is not completely exact, because what I wrote about Albania has in its foundation good words for the Albanian history and culture and my critical attitude towards the policy followed after the '70.

    - You declared that during the '70 Albania had a high economic development? What do you mean by this?

    - A lot of things were happening at that time, wich I think were positive. Basic industry was build, many people were engaged in agriculture, there were schools that functioned.

    - What about the Elbasani Combine Mill? - It was under construction when I visited it. In the guest book I wrote that it was a great gift of China for the Albanian people.

    - If the Albanian official authorities would say that you were in the service of Sigurimi, what would your reaction be? - Then, I would address to the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs to ask about the procedures and regulations in such cases and compile a complaint for the Albanian Interior Ministry.

    - How did you got the observer's status? - Denmark is a member country of OSCE, and it sends observers not only in European countries, but also in other countries of the world. I was encouraged by the ruling Party in Denmark to call the Danish Foreign Ministry and show my interest to partecipate in the observers' group, if Denmark was going to send any in Albania. They were impressed when they heard that there was somebody who knew Albania. Denmark sent 4 observers. The first was a former minister, the second a parliamentarian, the third a policeman having experience in Peshkopia, who is in charge of logistics and I. I was the "expert".

    - Did you have the same status in any other European country? - I was member of the Danish election board.

    - I mean OSCE observer in the role of ODIHR's specialist? - The danish cops were recently established.

    - I understand but, heve you ever been an ODIHR-s specialist? - I think there are different branches of OSCE.

    - Yes, there are, but I mean ODIHR's mission ? - Its offices are located in Warsaw.

    - We know that, but have you ever been on ODIHR's specialist? - No. Denmark has got some observers cops. I became a member of such cops last may. There have been elections in other countries too, but I could not go, because of my time, and in June I became father for the third time. But when I go to Denmark, I will call the Foreign Ministry and say I would like to be an observer in Kosova. If I could not go there, I would ask them to send me to Asia. If Denmark will send observers for example in Thailand, I would like to go there. But the Foreign Ministry has not made any call yet.

    - One third of the ODIHR's observers are also registered in the PCEC as observers invited by SP. So some observers got a double status. You and another Dane are also included in this list. What's your comment?

    - I do not know anything about this. We were appointed by the Danish Foreign Ministry. I had some knowledge on Albania, I published some interviews with Albanian President, that's why I was appointed to come to Albania. Related to the other status I do not know anything.

    - What I mentioned is confirmed by the PCEC and a fax sent to SP offices published in "Albania.

    - I met some of these observers at Tirana International Hotel. I know Hengerslamin from Norway well, because he is a member of Norwegian Helsinki Committee and I worked with him.

    - Except being in Hotel Tirana, they were also SP observers. Do you agree with this double status?

    - I do not know. But I know that the ruling party in Norway is the SDP, and perheps they contacted SP, because they did not have much confidence on the way the election were going to be held in Albania. So, thay sent a fax to the opposition.

    - To be registered as a SP observer? - I do not know. All that I know is that the Danish SDP in power encouraged me to call ther Foreign Ministry to come to Albania, and I was included in the group.

    - When you forwards your report to the once mission in Tirana, did you write in it that the left opposition boycotted the elelctions only two hours before the closing of the voting process?

    - I went to different polling stations. We stayed in Pogradec. It was very difficult. In the morning, a day after the elections, I had the impression that there were a lot of irregularities.

    - Did you write anything about boycott? - OSCE report writes that certain laws were violated. It also includes some observations during the pre-electoral campaign. The president prolonged the voting time without giving any written statement.

    - The president issued a decree, but you were in Korca, perheps in a secret room at polling station, without having the chance of being informed about this.

    - I was in Korca to observe the elections and not to watch television. But in my report to OSCE and the Danish Foreign Ministry, the opposition boycott is included. Time of boycotting differed from zone to zone from one station to another. All these are included in my report. It is up to OSCE to summarize the report, and the governments of European countries to make political decisions.

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [18] NO IRREGULARITIES IN BIG CITIES - Republican Party

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 (ATA) - By Eva Allushi: "There are no irregularities in the big cities," told ATA the chief of the sector of polls organization of the Republican party, Gjok Beci, referring to cities such as Peshkopi, Vlora, Gjirokastra, Puka and Kurbini.

    "But, some branches of our party have reported of some election law violations, such as in the commune of Shengjergj, the election commission has not accepted a replacement of the members of the commission representing this party (those who had withdrawn from the first commission) with new members, thus violating article 31 of the election law." kled/xh/sh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [19] IN GENERAL ELECTIONS ARE GOING ON WELL - Ruffy

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 (ATA) - Asked after a meeting in the Permanent Central Election Commission (PCEC) regarding the polling process until 17.00 hrs today, the chairman of the group of observers of the Council of Europe, Victor Ruffy, said that "in general elections are going well and we hope they will continue like this to the end."

    The Council of Europe has sent a group of 47 observers to monitor the local vote in Albania. kled/xh/sh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [20] DP CANDIDATES IN CENTRAL ALBANIA ON THE VERGE OF VICTORY

    TIRANA, OCT 20 (ATA) - According to sources from the Albanian Democratic Party, its candidates in Kamza municipality and Shengjergji commune, Tirana distric, have won 68 and 64 percents of the votes, respectively.

    Traditionally, this area in central Albania has been a stronghold of Socialist party.

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [21] TWO OBSERVERS OPEN TWO POLLING BOXES

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 (ATA) - According to a report from the No 4 polling station, Romanat, Durres district, two foreign observers have opened and taken photos of two polling boxes.

    The secretary of Foreign Relations of the Socialist Party (SP), Maqo Lakrori in a report about the event, addressed to the Permanent Central Election Commission, said that "two unidentified people have taken away two polling boxes."

    In order to verify this act, the PCEC charged two of its members to go to the spot immediately.

    The explanations by the members of the election commission of the polling station and the protocol on this act, signed by all the members of the commission of the polling station, say that "at about 16.00, two foreign observers and an interpreter came to this polling station."

    According to testimonies by the members of the commission, "the foreign observers had a Greek accent and did not accept to show the document issued by the PCEC to prove their being observers."

    The protocol made on this act says that "during the process of observation, doubting that one of the boxes had a broken lid, the two people tried to open the polling boxes, and spoiled the seals on them. Then they took photos of the open boxes."

    According to the protocol, all the members of the election commission of the polling station, who were present in the scene, opposed this act of the observers.

    "The foreign observers," says the protocol, "did not agree to discuss and left without listening to the opinion of the commission."

    The members of the commission said in that "they left on a black vehicle of the type Audi 100, with the number plate TR 12 79 C. One of the two foreigners was brunette, tall and thin."

    The protocol carries the opinion of all the members of the commission against the act of the observers who declared that "so far, the voting process was going on well".

    According to the sources of the Interior Ministry, the driver and the vehicle are identified. As for the two observers, this Ministry will announce its opinion on Monday.

    PCEC informed about this act the chairman of the observers' group of the Council of Europe, Victor Ruffy, and the member of this group, Gian- Paolo Castanetto.

    After informed about this act, the officials from Europe said that "from the reports available so far, everything is going on very well and we wish it will continue like this up to the end of the vote."xh/mt/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [22] VOTERS' PARTICIPATION IN ALBANIA'S POLLS UNTIL 20.30

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 (ATA) - According to reports that have reached the Central Election Commission, the voters' participation in today's elections until 20.30 hrs was as follows:
    Berat 65 %                    Pogradec 53.5 %
    Diber 69 %		      Puka 70 %
    Durres 68 %		      Tirane 75 %
    Elbasan 73 %		      Tropoje 67.5 %
    Erseka 78 %		      Shkoder 68 %
    Fier 68 %		      Vlore 65 %
    Korce 65 %		      Saranda 45 %
    Kavaje 91 %		      Peqin 75 %
    Lushnja 73 %		      Kucova 66 %
    Malesia e Madhe 78 %	      Kolonja 73.1 %
    Mallakaster 68 %	      Librazhdi 62 %
    Permet 65 %		      Lezha 56 %
    
    xh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [23] REPORT OF ALBANIAN INTERIOR MINISTRY ABOUT SP PROTESTS

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 (ATA) - Albanian Interior Ministry gives today explanations for the public opinion about some protests that the Socialist Party has distributed for foreign news agencies, through which it claims that police forces in some polling stations have pressurized people to vote for the Democratic Party.

    These SP protests do not refer to the reality, spokesman of the Interior Ministry reports, saying that the distribution of these protests has started since the early morning hours. This shows clearly that the protests have been prepared before hand and aimed to discredit the polling process in Albania, the spokesman says. He added that as soon as it learned of these protests, the Interior Ministry used all its means and respective specialists to verify the protests in the places claimed.

    After verification, it came out that the whole content of the declarations spread by SP for foreign news agencies is not according to real facts. Even in rare cases when there have been incidents in the polling stations or with voters, police forces have intervened correctly and in conformity with the law to set the situation normal.

    The Interior Ministry has not received any protest by any political force during the whole day, the spokesman of the Interior Ministry reports. pas/xh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [24] TIRANA VOTES AGAIN FOR THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY

    TIRANA, OCT. 20 (ATA) - Tirana voted again for the Democratic Party. According to preliminary reports, the Democratic Party candidate for Mayor of Tirana, Albert Brojka, has won about 60 per cent of the votes in today's poll.

    In 80 polling centres, in which the ballots have been counted, the DP candidate has won 60-69 per cent of the votes, according to a report from the Tirana DP branch.

    No incidents have occurred during the voting process. Elections are held calmly and freely. The ballots' counting process is continuing in full understanding among the representatives of various political forces. xh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [25] CERRIK: DP CANDIDATE FOR MAYOR WINS 70 PERCENT OF VOTES

    TIRANA, Oct 20 (ATA) - Sources from the Democratic Party report that its candidate for Mayor's post in Cerriku town (central Albania) has won 70 percent of ballots.

    Cerriku municipality was headed until now by a Socialist party representative. Other sources from Fieri prefecture, referring to data from its commission confirms another victory of DP candidates of Strumi and Kumani communes. Other data are in favour of a possible victory of DP candidates in Libofsha commune, one of the largest of the district. pas


    From the Albanian Telegraphic Agency (ATA) Home Page at http://www.telpress.it/ata


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