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Albanian Telegraphic Agency (ATA), 97-05-14
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From: The Albanian Telegraphic Agency (ATA) Home Page at <http://www.telpress.it/ata>
Albanian Telegraphic Agency
 ALBANIAN DELEGATION TAKES PART IN PAN-EUROPEAN MINISTERIAL CONFERENCETIRANA, MAY 13 (ATA)- By A. Keko, Albanian delegation, headed by Albanian Interior Minister Belul Celo, yesterday left for Tromso of Norway to take part in the Pan-European Ministerial Conference "On international cooperation and politics of war against drug traffic and abuse, due between May 14 and 16.
According to the spokesman of the Interior Ministry, Celo is also expected to hold meetings with authorities of the Norwegian Foreign Ministry. a.ke/pas/lm/k
 BUILDING OF KAKAVIJE BORDER CROSSING POINT ATTACKEDTIRANA, MAY 14 (ATA)- Several armed men on Tuesday opened fire on the building of the Border Crossing Point of Kakavija, (near the Albanian-Greek border, on Albanian zone) wounding two police officers from the Gjirokaster town, while they were on duty.
The attack came two hours after a quarrel between two persons shooting at each other at this point.
One of them was wounded and later sent to Gjirokaster hospital.
Upon learning the news of the wounding of this person, an armed band left for Kakavije to take revenge and without any cause attacked the building of the border crossing point. eva/lm/z
 PRESS REVIEWTIRANA, MAY 14 (ATA) - Today's newspapers report on the approval yesterday by parliament of the election law. Rilindja Demokratike carries the editorial:"SP imitates May 26". It says that the socialists began yesterday to undermine the voting process. The paper carries the article:"Socialists return to boycott".
As regards amendments to the election law, the paper carries the pronouncement of the DP secretary general, Genc Pollo,: "DP respects accords".
The paper carries an interview with the chairman of the Legality Movement Party, Durollari, entitled:"We abide by the May 9 agreement".
Concerning Prime Minister Fino's statement in Washington, the paper carries the article: "Fino, obedient soldier of the SP". The paper also carries the article "SP undermines elections".
Zeri i Popullit carries the statement of the SP parliamentary group that in parliament they will not discuss anything else before the way of approving the election law prepared by the Government of National Reconciliation is unblocked.
Under the headline "Another masquerade of Berisha and his tools," the paper carries the article:"DP is spoiling the contract".
Republika carries a statement of the RP chairman and deputy to the People's Assembly, Sabri Godo, saying that the RP agrees to the consensus of the nine parties to submit to parliament the election draft-law proposed by the government.
"But we are against any kind of political manoeuvre. We declare that we will not take part in elections if the DP majority approves the law arbitrarily," the paper says. It also carries the article:"SP: DP tricked us".
Rilindja covers the meetings of Prime Minister Fino in Washington under the title:"Holding elections - key step to restore trust in power". On this occasion, the paper also carries a statement of the spokesman of the U.S. State Department Nicholas Burns entitled: "Consensus important for the election law". The paper covers in a special article on yesterday's parliament proceedings.
As regards the electoral law approved Tuesday, Albania says that President Berisha is expected to approve this law on Wednesday. It covers yesterday's parliament sitting under the title: "Elections and referendum (on the form of government) on the same day", the paper says: "Fifty two votes for, one against, two abstentions. The leftists will boycott the elections and government".
Koha Jone says;"DP deputies drop election draft-law of the Government. The Arbnori-Spahia law proposed and approved. The opposition quits parliament's hall". The paper also cites the opposition as saying:"We do not take part in elections. This is a putsch". The paper carries the editorial:"Dictator plays with the mouse", regarding the election law approved on Tuesday.
Dita carries the editorial:"When one cannot live without quarrels", saying that :"Treatment in European language of point 2 of the (political) contract, and of details of the electoral law, resulted quite unreadable for the Albanian political primitive leader".
Gazeta Shqiptare says:"The DP law endangers elections". As regards the election law approved yesterday by parliament, the paper says:"The Fino project 'disappears'", as well as "parties threaten: 'We will not take part in elections'".
Newspaper Independent carries the editorial:"Bomb in Fino's plane", regarding the election law. The paper also says: "Nine parties object the electoral law presented by the DP" as well as :"President today calls election date".
Other topics treated by today's press are:
Rilindja Demokratike:"Citizens abandon Salvation Committees", "Extremism intensified inside the SP", and "Criminal gangs carry out violent mobilisation in Vlore".
Zeri i Popullit covers the visit of Prime Minister Fino in Washington considering it successful and says:"Albright to come to Albania".
Rilindja covers the visit of the spokesman of the U.S. State Department, Nicholas Burns, on the Fino-Albright meeting, under the title: "Importance of consensus for the election law".
Albania says:"Vlore, clashes between rivals on "zones of influence'" continue".
Koha Jone carries an interview with Prime Minister Fino while on a visit to the U.S. under the title: "A requested that "Alba" guards the votes, they agreed with me".
As regards Fino's visit to the U.S., Dita says:"The U.S.: support for Fino".
Gazeta Shqiptare says:"Vlore, commissar leaves, battle amidst the city", and "The first corpses of Otranto found". jz/kei/lm/E
 STATEMENT OF ALBANIAN PARLIAMENT SPEAKER PJETER ARBNORITIRANE, MAY 14 (ATA) - The Chairman of the Presidency of the People's Assembly, Pjeter Arbnori, made the following statement with regard to the approval by the Parliament on May 13, 1997 of the electoral law:
1. The electoral law which Albanian Parliament has approved is completely conformed to the political contract signed on May 9, 1997 by 10 political parties and with the definition by Mr Vranitzly that the coming law must be an intermediate document between the electoral law of 1992 and that of 1996. This law has a broader proportional component and a broader majority component of the two above mentioned laws. Actually, it includes 115 deputies elected on the basis of the majority system and 40 deputies on the proportional system, thus increasing to 60 per cent the number of the deputies elected on the basis of the proportional system applied in 1996.
2. The law that the Parliament approved on May 13, 1997, differently from the law of 1992 and that of 1996, has reduced from 4 to 3 per cent the limit for the small parties, thus respecting them more.
3. The law includes the 11 recommendations of the European Council, ODHIR and OSCE, which the political parties agreed upon in October last year in the round table discussion with the President of the Republic.
I am convinced that all those who will see this law and want to be unbiased, will find that this law is constructed according to European standards and it has a reliable basis for fair and free elections in Albania.
4. The law envisages a totally equal division of the time for TV coverage between the position parties and those of the opposition during the electoral campaign.
5. The contract of the parties envisaged that the electoral law behad to be approved on May 12. No law of this kind was presented to the Parliament by the Government until May 14, the date when the day of elections would be set. In these circumstances, the Parliament approved the law. It has instructed that the law must be translated, published and when the international opinion will read they will find that it is a democratic law which favours none of the parties.
I also invite the U.S. State Department to study this law and I am convinced that after this, it will come to the conclusion that the law has a legal basis for fair and correct elections, says the statement of Mr Pjeter Arbnori. ssh/xh/e
 CHRISTIAN DEMOCRATIC PARTY DOES NOT JOIN EXTREMIST STANDSTIRANA, MAY 14 (ATA)- By A. Frasheri, The Christian-Democratic Party (CDP) will be careful in assessing the situation after the passing of the election law by parliament and after the statement of eight political parties yesterday.
"We will not join extremist stands and not accept statements as 'we will walk out of the government or will not take part in elections'", the CDP chairman, Zef Bushati, said before the beginning of an urgent meeting of the presidency of this party.
The meeting will analyse yesterday's statement of the eight political parties and the way the electoral law was voted by parliament.
Bushati said that: "For the time being we cannot provide a position to this situation."
He considered the news conference, to be held by the parties by midday, "hasty and unreasonable", and said that his party would not take part in this conference.
Meanwhile, the SP chairman, Fatos Nano, cancelled a news conference scheduled for today at 11.00, as he was reported to have many important meetings. s.sh/eva/lm/E
 DECLARATION OF SOME ALBANIAN POLITICAL PARTIESTIRANE, MAY 14 (ATA) - The Social Democratic Party, the Republican Party, the Democratic Alliance Party, the Christian Democratic Party, the Human Right Union Party, the Socialist Party and the Movement for Democracy Party, which convened Tuesday adopted the following declaration:
1. The parties which convened today on May 13, 1997 to analyse the situation after the arbitrary act of the DP parliamentary group with regard to the new electoral law, declare that they observe the March 9 and May, 1997 agreements.
2. They support the National Reconciliation Government in its efforts for the preparation of free and equal elections in cooperation with international organizations, and particularly for its draft of the electoral law which is fruit of compromise.
3. The blocking of the law-making initiative of the National Reconciliation Government regarding the new draft of the electoral law prepared by it is a flagrant violation of the above agreements and has the value of a vote of non-confidence for the government.
4. The political parties participating in the round table discussion do not agree to take part in the elections imposed on the basis of the electoral law of May 26, 1996, or a law similar to it, and they will immediately review their further participation in the National Reconciliation Government.
5. The present parliamentary political parties refuse their participation in the parliament until the situation is unblocked.
6. The re-negotiation of the May 9, 1997 Agreement between the political parties in the presence of Mr Vranitzky, is indispensable.
7. It is also indispensable the extension of the mandate of the multinational forces with their participation in securing order and peace during the electoral process.
8. The adoption of the draft law of the DP parliamentary Group brings the government crisis back to the level of March 1997 and for all this the responsbility rests with the Democratic Party. xh/sh/
 GUARDS OF THE GREEK BORDER KILL AN ILLEGAL EMIGRANTSARANDE, MAY 14 (ATA) - By Shkelqim Hajno: An Albanian illegal emigrant was killed in the vicinity of the coasting town of Igumenice, some 20 miles far from the Albanian-Greek naval border.
The Greek television channels reported that a motorboat, which started from the Albanian territorial waters from the outskirts of Saranda, entered the Greek territorial waters, making possible later the loading of a quantity of drugs in the Greek border. But, when a person was arrested as soon as he entered the Greek territory, the other person, who was on the motor-boat did not obey the orders of the Greek guards, and was shot dead during a fire exchange with them.
Sources of the Greek electronic media of the Thesprotise and Corfu region mentioned that the tension against the Albanian illegal emigrants has increased recently, especially after a fire exchange some 20 days ago, between the armed emigrants and the Greek guards, where a Greek officer was shot dead. /a.ke/kled/
 SEVERAL POLITICAL PARTIES WAIT FOR FINO AND VRANITZKY TO PRONOUNCE ON ELECTION LAWTIRANA, MAY 14 (ATA) - By Keida Kostreci, Atlant Frasheri: Several Albanian political parties will wait for the arrival in Albania of the special envoy of OSCE, Franz Vranitzky, and of Premier Fino from USA, to give further pronouncements regarding the election law, approved Tuesday by Parliament.
"We will not pronounce about this problem until Fino and Vranitzky arrive in Albania," said one of the participants after a meeting among some political parties, the leader of the Moveemnt for Democracy Party, Dashamir Shehi.
In the parliamentary session on Tuesday, the chairman of the SP parliamentary group, Namik Dokle, issued a statement on behalf of Socialist Party, Social Democratic Party, Republican Party, Democratic Alliance, Christian Democratic Party, National Front, Human Rights Union Party, Movement for Democracy Party, which says:
"The blocking of the law-making initiative of the National Reconciliation Government, regarding the new draft of the election law, prepared by it, is a flagrant violation of the above agreements and has the value of a vote of non confidence for the government".
"A critical view is taken of Fino, the same as of Jukov times ago," said the chairman of the Social Democratic Party, Skender Gjinushi.
Gjinushi said that "practically, the government is fictive now, so that its resignation is of no importance."
The President of the Republic said Wednesday in a meeting in Kavaja that he would decree today the election day and would dissolve the Parliament.
"The Government will not hold the polls with this law," he said, while the leader of the Democratic Alliance, Neritan Ceka, ally of Gjinushi, said that "the elections will be held."
Asked whether the parliament could convene to make amendments on the election law, Gjinushi said that "there is a very clear article that, even when the Parliament is dissolved, the Government can call it to convene."
Gjinushi accused President Berisha of "violating all kinds of agreements among the parties and he does not have the consensus of any party, does not have support of OSCE and Council of Europe, which according to Gjinushi, have said that they support only the Government."
Asked what would they do if OSCE would give the approval for this draft-law, he said that "I am sure this can never happen."
The Government of National Reconciliation has not presented in parliament until now the new election law, as it was envisaged in the May 9 contract among the Albanian political parties./mt/sh/
 ROAD BERAT-LUSHNJE BLOCKEDLUSHNJE, MAY 14 (ATA) - In Karbunare, 5 km far from Lushnje, as well as in several points of the axe of the national road Lushnje-Berat, groups of people did not allow the vehicles of Berat to pass. The buses of the line Berat-Tirana and Berat with the other districts could not transport the travellers into their destination.
According to different sources, some citizens from Berat, robbed two days ago a vehicle of Lushnje and in response to this, the Lushnje citizens do not allow the Berati citizens to pass through. /a.ke/kled/mt/
 GANGS LOOT THE POST OFFICE IN BERATBERAT, MAY 14 (ATA) - Several people have entered by 11:00 the main hall of the Post Office in Berat and have looted all the money and packages sent from abroad.
The action was immediate and caused panic and fear among those who were present there.
It is reported that the employees were shocked and abandoned the post. The amount of money is not known yet and police were informed about what happened.
The news was spread out among the families and many of them have not allow ed the children to go to schools. /a.ke/kled/mt/sh/
 TERROR CONTINUE IN BOARDER CHECK POINT OF KAKAVIJE - two policemen injured -KAKAVIJE, MAY 14 (ATA) - By H. aani: In the border check point of Kakavije, which connects Greece with Albania, the criminal gangs continue to rob and exercise violence on the Albanians who travel in this point.
These gangs continued Tuesday the systematic robberies and were confronted with the order forces, and as a result of this the policemen Maksi aani, and Genci Mullai were injured.
Due to these violent acts, it is interrupted the functioning of the Greek border check point, and the Greek consulate in Gjirokaster.
The border check point of Kakavije is under the complete control of gangs. Several days ago they injured gravely a 13-year old girl from Delvina, as well as violated an Albanian citizen who was coming from Greece.
Robbery and terror were also exercised on the vehicles and buses in the axe of the road Kakavije-Ballsh./a.ke/kled/mt/sh/
 LETTER OF ALBANIAN PRIME MINISTER FINO TO PARLIAMENT SPEAKER ARBNORITIRANE, MAY 1`4 (ATA) - As the spokesman of the People's Assembly of Albania reports, the Chairman of the National Reconciliation Government, Bashkim Fino had sent, on May 9, 1997, a letter to the Chairman of the Presidency of the People's Assembly, Pjeter Arbnori. Follows the text of the letter:
"Today, on May 9, 1997, the Council of Ministers will discuss and decide on the draft law of elections, the version adopted by the majority of the political forces in the round table of the parties.
Mr Chairman, I would ask you, please, that the draft law, which I will sent to you immediately, be planned for discussion the next week both in parliamentary commissions and in plenary session. In the plenary session I will also present, in the name of the National Reconciliation Government, the program of work for the realisation of the new elections. ake/xh/+++
 INSECURITY IN NATIONAL ROADS - DelvineDELVINE, MAY 14 (ATA) - By Shkelqim Hajno: The robberies and terror continue in the segments of the national road in the district of Delvine, which connects the later with Gjirokaster and the boarder check point of Kakavije.
It is reported that two days ago, the above gangs, by taking advantage of the fact that the multinational forces, deployed in Grehot of Gjirokaster, were not controlling the national roads, robbed and controlled for jewelryes all the passengers who were travelling towards Kakavije, or who turned back from Greece in this point.
At least nine people from the districts of Sarande and Delvive have died in this road segment due to acts of these armed gangs during the months of riots. /a.ke/kled/mt/
 FINO OPPOSES ELECTORAL LAW WITHOUT PRESENTING HIS VERSION IN THE PARLIAMENTTIRANE, MAY 14 (ATA) - By R Floqi: Albanian Premier Bashkim Fino presented in the Parliament on May 14 in the evening a declaration through which he opposed the law on elections adopted by the Parliament but he did not present the government version of this law.
"I have no direct remarks for the law," said Premier Fino, asked by ATA, after his declaration, "but the law should have been adopted in the spirit of the political consensus since the government is formed in the spirit of this consensus and this is the way we must go to elections."
Fino said that through this act, "some important moments of the political agreement reached between the political forces and the representatives of European institutions have been not observed, hence there are carried out acts which run counter to the spirit of consensus which all the political forces and the governmment are being committed to realise."
A declaration signed by 8 parties yesterday against the law which the Parliament approved, said that "precisely the May 9 Agreement must be reconsidered."
Fino explained the procedure of the preparation of the law by him after broad consultations with the political parties, which on May 9 adopted in principle the new law of elections. Fino said he had informed the Parliment Speaker that after his return from the visit to the U.S., he would take part himself in the presentation and defence of this important draftlaw, which was one of the main tasks of the National Reconciliation Government.
Taking the floor after Mr Fino, Mr Arbnori said that "neither yesterday which was the legal deadline nor now has the government presented any draft law."
"Without speaking of the context of this law, I consider this initiative and the procedure followed for its approval as something which opposes openly the spirit of the March 9 Agreement and the very points of the political contract of May 9," said Fino.
"The Prime Minister was right not to approve the draft law on elections prepared by the Ministry of Law, because in concept that draft was not conformed to the political contract of May 9, but at the same time neither yesterday nor today has any draft of this law been presented, except for a declaration," said DP chairman, Tritan Shehu.
Elections will be free only if they will be realised by this government, only if they are conducted on the basis of the consensus of all the parties, only if all the political parties will take part in it and their outcome is accepted by all, said Fino in the declaration. His only hope was that tomorrow, when Mr Vranitzky comes, "all possibilities may exist to reach a consensus to mend everything and to have democratic elections." xh
 STATEMENT OF THE UNION FOR DEMOCRACYTIRANE, MAY 14 (ATA) - The Democratic Party, the Movement of Legality Party, the Social Democratic Union Party, the Christian Demcratic Party and the Democratic Union Party, by discussing extensively the indispensable need of cooperation for a landslide victory of Albanian democracy in the June 29 elections, agree to:
1. be members of the Union for Democracy.
2. to create an inter-party commission to coordinate electoral cooperation between them, consisting of the main leaders of these parties.
3. be conmmitted to leave each other free zones.
4. to stand with common candidate and have a common list for the proportional system.
5. to support one another in the second round of polls according to the decisions of the coordinating commission.
6. Union for Democracy remains open for the Balli Kombetar Party and is resolute to support set candidates of the Republican Party.
Our parties congratulate the President of the Republic for his initiative to reexamine in the Parliament of the electoral law with the objective of expanding the space for the small parties, reducing the minimal limit to 2 per cent and for the accounting of the propotional system mostly in favour the small parties. xh
 STATEMENT TO PEOPLE'S ASSEMBY BY ALBANIAN PREMIER ABOUT THE LAW ON ELECTIONSTIRANE, MAY 14 (ATA) - Albanian Prime Minister Bashkim Fino made a declaration today in the People's Assembly regarding the new law on elections. After thanking the deputies who gave him the possiblity to make that declaration, in the capacity of the Council of Ministers, the Premier said:
"During my visit to the U.S. I was informed that the People's Assembly had examined and adopted through an accelerated procedure the new electoral law. My concern is linked with the fact that this act has violated some important moments of the political agreement reached between the political forces and the representatives of European institutions, hence, this act is contrary to the spirit of consensus which all the political forces and the government are trying to realise.
I would like to inform you that after braod consultations with the political parties and with experts of OSCE and the Council of Europe, on Friday, May 9, 1997, the Governemt adopted in princille the new electoral law.
Taking into account the political contract signed by the political parties in the presence of Mr Vranitzky which stipulates that May 12 is the deadline for the parties to agree on the draftlaw, we left three days at the disposal of the parties that after the adoption in princile, they have the possiblity for eventual technical changes to the draft. After this, I had a meeting with Mr Arbnori in which I informed him of the aforesaid and asked him that the session for the adoption of the law be held after my return from the visit to the U.S., since I want to take part personally in the presentation and defence of this important draftlaw, which consists one of the main tasks of the National Reconciliation Government. I also presented this request in written to Mr Arbnori. Mr Arbnori had no opposition to what I presented to him.
But differently from this, upon the initiative of the DP parliamentary group, quite suprisignly the People's Assembly included in the agenda and adopted another draftlaw on elections.
Without speaking about the context of this law, I consider this initiative and the procedure followed for its approval an open opposiotn to the spirit of the March 9 political agreement and with the points of the May 9 contract itself. The essence of this question is that the electoral law must be adopted with the consensus of all the parties and conformed to all the rules in order to have free and democratic elections. This also is the basis of the stability which will lead then to a stable political solution through the electoral process. I demand this from all the political forces, and this is also demanded by all European governments and international institutions concerned in the solution of the Albanian crisis.
I have several times appealed to DP not to impose on others through its parliamentary majority, but it must find the spirit of cooperation with all political forces which have reached the agreement for the National Reconciliation Government.
I regret to say here that you have acted differently from this spirit, contrary to the very political contract which DP leaders have signed.
I would like to stress here once more that the National Reconciliation Govenment is charged with the realisation of the elections. The earlier elections will be free and democractic only if they will be realised by this government, only if they will be conducted with the consensus of all the parties, only if all political parties take part in them and only if the poll outcome is accepted by all political parties, also in line with the conclusions of the international authority. The elections will not be organized by the Democratic Party. This party is equal with other political forces during all the electoral process.
Now it is clear for all the Albanians, the intenational institutions and the governments of the European states and the U.S. that, also in line with the constitutional provisions and the legislation in force, the National Reconciliation Govenment will use its competence and carry out its tasks in adopting all the decisions for the realisation of these polls, beginning with the endorsement of the electoral law and other necessary acts, up to the setting of the election day and the dissolution of the People's Assembly.
Just like the electoral law will not be made by a single party, the election day too cannot not be declared in a meeting. Such illegal acts not only do not help realise the free and democratic elections, but also increase the political tension in the country and hamper the realisation of a political and stable solution for the country.
In conclusion, I would like to invite you, honoured deputies, to discuss and decide on the draft law presented by the Government, being completely open to decide in the spirit of the consensus and cooperation between all the political forces," ends the statement of Albanian Premier Bashkim Fino. xh
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