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Albanian Times, 96-05-08

The Albanian Times (by AlbAmerica TRade & Consulting International) Directory

From: AlbAmerica Trade & Consulting International <http://www.worldweb.net/~ww1054/>

Albanian Times
May 8, 1996


CONTENTS

  • [01] Officials Speed Up Preparations As Vote Nears

  • [02] Foreign Minister Serreqi to Visit U.S.

  • [03] Albanian Parliament Hooked Up On Internet

  • [04] Berisha Campaigns in Farming Districts

  • [05] Albanian Parties in Macedonia Blast Gligorov on University Issue

  • [06] Albanian Development Fund


  • [01] Officials Speed Up Preparations As Vote Nears

    TIRANA, May 7 - Albanians will be able to use their passports as identification for the May 26 ballot, Central Election Commission in Tirana said. Qualified citizens who don't have identification papers may use their passports, a spokesman for the commission said. Albanian citizens are no more required to carry identification papers which in the communist era were printed by the Interior Ministry. Soldiers will be given specially designed certificates so they can vote in the barracks where they serve, without having to return to their home districts, the spokesman added. The decision was made on a proposal by the Defense Ministry. The Election Commission is expected to announce the lists of candidates on Wednesday. The lists have gone through careful sifting by a special commission looking into the background of the candidates to see if they held high posts in the communist regime or were spies of the former secret service. Dozens of would-be candidates of the opposition Socialist Party were disqualified from running in the elections. Two opposition politicians, Skender Gjinushi, chairman of the Social-Democratic Party and Prec Zogaj of the Democratic Alliance were dropped from the lists after their appeals were rejected by the nation's highest court. (Albanian Times)

    [02] Foreign Minister Serreqi to Visit U.S.

    TIRANA, May 7 - Albanian Foreign Minister Alfred Serreqi will begin Wednesday an official visit to the United States, invited by the Secretary of State Warren Christopher, a ministry spokesman said. The talks with Mr. Christopher are expected to include Albanian-U.S. bilateral relations and the situation in the Balkans and in Kosova, the spokesman said. This is Serreqi's first official visit to Washington since his appointment as foreign minister in Aleksander Meksi's cabinet in 1992. (Albanian Times)

    [03] Albanian Parliament Hooked Up On Internet

    TIRANA, May 7 - Albanian Parliament has become the country's first national institution to be linked up with the Internet. Albanian parliamentary speaker Pjeter Arbnori said the UNDP sponsored project was "an important show of support by UNDP for the country's democratic processes, and will help Albania increase cooperation with parliaments in other countries." UNDP's Resident Representative in Albania Peter Schumann said that UNDP was happy to help Albania from "the list of those few countries in the world which still do not have an internet connection." Since last year, a number of foreign consultants have been working with local technicians to establish a connectivity node in capital Tirana where computers are becoming a sought after commodity and telephone lines are improving. (Albanian Times)

    [04] Berisha Campaigns in Farming Districts

    TIRANA, May 7 - Albanian President Sali Berisha has pledged support to farmers, in an attempt to attract them towards the elction program of his ruling Democratic Party. On his campaign trail, Berisha promised farmers in the Pogradec district an advantageous loan system and tried to discourage them from voting socialist. He said "the socialists have included a progressive tax in their program," adding that the Democratic Party has rectified its initial mistake by lowering taxes on farmers. On Tuesday, Berisha toured Permet and other southern districts, where he raised the campaign tones against what he calls "the Red Front" and where he includes the Socialist Party - the renamed communists and other opposition groups. (Albanian Times)

    [05] Albanian Parties in Macedonia Blast Gligorov on University Issue

    SKOPJE, May 7 - Ethnic Albanian leaders in Macedonia have accused President Kiro Gligorov of endangering regional peace by suggesting that only extreme separatists support the Albanian-language university. Gligorov told a German newspaper in a weekend interview the Albanian university in Tetovo was the brainchild of separatists. ``(Gligorov's) statement pushes Albanians towards real separatism by ignoring their demands (for a university)... which is dangerous for peace in the region.'' said the Party for Democratic Prosperity of Albanians in a statement. The university of Tetovo opened in February 1995 and operates now but is not recognised by the government. Macedonian authorities say the country already has two insitutions of higher education, which they argue are sufficient for its needs. They also fear that allowing the Albanains their own separate educational institutions could lead to the creation of a state within a state. (Albanian Times/Reuters)

    [06] Albanian Development Fund

    TIRANA, May 8 - The Albanian Development Fund (ADF), established in 1992 has been helping the development of rural and urban areas by creating new jobs, supporting economic activities and rehabilitating infrastructures. As an agency that implements World Bank projects, the Fund supports those infrastructure projects where most of the construction work is labor intensive. The Fund also supports with small credits and advice the unemployed and economically disadvantaged people helping them start their own business. The main donors of the Albanian Development Fund have been the International Development Association (IDA) - 37 percent, the Swiss Government - 3 percent, the Italian Government - 22 percent, the International Fund for Aid Development - 12 percent, the European Union - 16 percent, the Japanese Fund - 4 percent and the French government - 3 percent. Since 1992, the ADF has been operating on an initial capital of 24,190,000 leks. (Albanian Times)

    This material was reprinted with permission of AlbAmerica Trade & Consulting International. For more information on ATCI and the Albanian Times, please write to AlbaTimes@aol.com

    Copyright © ATCI, 1996

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