"The events in Albania have created concern," the government spokesman, Dhimiter Rrepas, commented on the Greek TV ET1 in Athens on Tuesday.
According to Rrepas, the Greek government will undertake the initiative in the context of EU or in the Council of General Affairs in February so that a special activity of EU for the Balkans, Albania, Bulgaria, Rumania and neighbouring countries exists "to ensure stabilising conditions for the regular democratic functioning so that the economic development conditions exist for the improvement of the living standard of the citizens of these countries." kled/lm
According to the prosecutors cited by Albania paper, the fundamental register possessed by each of the foundations' affiliates for the daily, weekly, monthly deposits makes up the basis of success in the procedure of money reimbursement.
The first who will take the deposited amounts are the creditors of September 1st, who have retrieved no returns.
The procedure of returning the money to 227 000 creditors of the two foundations will be publicly announced by the Attorney General. The prosecutors will hand over all the procedure on February 1st to the government, which will start reimbursement of money on February 5th. /jz/mt/Z/
The spokesman of the Interior Ministry explains that 247 persons have been summoned or accompanied to the Police Commissariats in Lushnje, Fier, Vlore, Tirana, Korce and Diber, in cooperation with the prosecutors' office of these districts.
These persons have been interrogated about the recent terrorist acts. Some of them, he says, have been summoned as witnesses with the aim of completing the documentation on these acts.
Meanwhile, the spokesman of the Interior Ministry stresses that the process of completing the documentation and obtaining further testimony to make evident the persons that set to fire state institutions in these districts and organised and led the violence in these demonstrations, continues. lm/jz/
Rilindja Demokratike covers the news conference of President Berisha under the title "Political, economic and financial stability". With regard to the government decision for the distribution of money, the paper publishes an interview with Zef Preci, director of the Albanian Center for Economic Research, entitled "People should trust in banks and should not run over in their offices". "Vandals before law", reports RP on the second page regarding the punishment the court will rule for the destructors of rallies.
Zeri i Popullit entitles its editorial "Cudgel policy". The paper covers the news conference of President Berisha on the third page under the title "Efforts to cover the crisis".
"The frozen money, all to creditors", report Republika paper regarding the news conference of Berisha. The paper reports on its editorial "Instead of the technical solutions, the politicians talk about the political solutions".
Rilindja highlights the news conference of President Berisha under the title "Economic, political and financial stability in Albania". The paper carries an interview with Kosova President Ibrahim Rugova given to "Le Monde" paper under the title "We have reserves against the Serbian opposition leaders". In an article published on the second page the paper reports "The wave of arrests in Kosova continues".
Under the headline "President Berisha guarantees the reimbursement of money frozen in banks", Albania reports:"Some $300 million", regarding the news conference of President Berisha.
"Albania in front of cameras" is the editorial of the paper. On the second page the paper runs the article "Justice answers to destructive rallies".
Dita Informacion, under the title "Berisha on the situation in Albania", highlights the news conference of the President. In the heading "Culture" the paper reports "Kadare, from Paris in 'Salonika '97".
Instead of the editorial, Koha Jone carries an article with regard to the news conference of President Berisha under the title "February 5th: No money, but savings cards". On the fifth page the paper reports that it is formed the forum for democracy, under the title "With the initiative of the left wing, eight opposition parties are gathered".
Gazeta Shqiptare highlights the news conference of President Berisha under the title "Berisha proposes savings cards". The paper entitles its editorial "The pyramidal ruins shake the currency". /eva/mt/
The assembly approved yesterday the report on Albania of its Political- Juridical Commission and stressed support for the Albanian parliament.
Almost no remarks were made about the report read by special rapporteur on Albania Columberg.
The approval of the report on Albania, the suggestion for the return of the opposition to parliament as well as the drafting of the new constitution by a parliamentary commission follow the stands of the CE on the latest developments in Albania. jz/lm/Z/
The Albanian parliament approved in its today's proceedings the decree on a change to the law "On personal income-tax".
The decree includes changes made by the parliamentary economic commission.
According to the decree, the income realised by the sale of immovable property worth up to two million leks is exempt of taxes, that of up to four million leks is taxed by 1 per cent, that of up to six million leks by 2 per cent, whereas that above six million leks by 3 per cent.
The interpellation with the Chairman of the State Control, Blerim Cela, about the report read by him on the budget of 1995 and the activity of 1996, has been put off for the next week. pas/lm/Z/
Albania will participate tomorrow in the inauguration of the Salonika city as the European Capital of Culture for 1997.
Albania will be officially represented by the Minister of Culture, Youth and Women, Teodor Laco, and the rector of the Academy of Arts, Gjergj Zheji.
Also invited will be writer Ismail Kadare, who will hold a colloquium between February 2-4, as well as violinist Tedi Papavrami. eva/lm/Z/
At 8.00 am, the coffin with the body of the Cardinal, in the presence of hundreds of Shkodra inhabitants, was placed in the Cathedral of the city for homage to be paid by Shkodra people.
At 11.00 the President of Albania, Sali Berisha, the chairman of the Presidency of the People's Assembly, Pjeter Arbnori, representatives of various religious beliefs, leaders of the local government came to attend the funeral ceremony.
In the Mass conducted on this occasion, the assistant bishop of Shkodra, Zef Simoni, said among others: "An undescribable grief is being felt in the city of Shkodra and in the entire Albania these days, for the death of the distinguished man of Albanian Catholic Church, Mikel Koliqi. He worked to spread Christianity together with Lazer Mjeda, Fishta and some other figures. But in 1945, the communist dictatorship sentenced Koliqi with 38 years in prison and internment. In 1986, although in an old age, the Cardinal continued praying at his house and spreading Christianity. The message of Koliqi was: all must work for the unity and fraternity of all the Albanians. He was a minister of great values, a loyal son of Catholic Church."
At the end of the Mass, President Berisha said: "Dom Mikel Koliqi was a man who could resist the prisons of the communist dictatorship, where he passed 38 years, but he did never abandon the road of church and Christianity. Shkodra of Koliqi has been and will remain the centre of Christianity. The coming generations will recall with respect this great man, the great Christian believer of the Albanian nation, who worked for the spread of Christianity in Albania. The Albanian Catholic Church lost its most beloved man, lost its leader, lost the one who worked for the church and Christianity. There are rare people in the history of Christianity and in the history of the Albanian nation who with their resistance, virtue, sacrifices, universe of their spirit, honoured more the church, the nation and Christianity in general, and such was Dom Mikel Koliqi."
The Arch Bishop of Durres and Tirana, Rrok Mirdita read out the telegram of Pope John Paul 2, which writes: "Learning with great great grief the news of the death of the honourable Mikel Koliqi, I express my profound regret for the loss of a brave pastor, who in his duty in service of the church, showed himself a living witness for the spread of religion. He was jailed for many years because he was carrying out the mission of the minister, but he was never intimidated and set a brilliant example to religion and to continuous loyalty to the Holy See."
For the life and figure of Cardinal Koliqi spoke leaders of various religious communities.
Then, the coffin of Cardinal Mikel Koliqi was buried in the Cathedral Church of the city in the presence of hundreds of hundreds of believers. xh/sh/
Attending the ceremony of the presentation of the credentials also was the deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Tritan Shehu.
The Czech Ambassador was accompanied by diplomats of the Czech Republic in Tirana. ssh/kled/xh/sh/
This illegal protest, with a limited number of people, was organized by opposition parties SP, DAP and SDP and lasted 15 minutes. The investors protested peacefully and there was not any confrontation with the forces of public order.
According to the chief of the police commissariat of this district, Bernard Caushi, the reason for denying permission for the protest was the small number of the forces of order deployed to guard the institutions of special importance, after the establishment of the second level alert.
During the protest, the Socialist leader Dashamir Kamberi and the zone socialist deputy Hamit Gjoni asked before 200 protesters the resignation of the Meksi government and the creation of a technical government. They accused the government of the tense situation, expressing disbelief and opposition to the measures that the government has adopted to resolve the problem.
Also in Gjirokastra, southern Albania, today opposition parties, SP, SDP, DAP, HRUP, NUP, held a legal protest in the square before the stadium of the city, with the participation of about 400 people.
Leaders of the opposition asked before protesters the toppling of the government and creation of a technical government. ssh/kled/xh/sh/
Sources of the commissariat report that Mr Musta had alluded in public places for the organization of a violent protest today, on January 30.
According to him, the branch of the National Commercial Bank was to be rioted because there have been frozen 100 million drachmas, and the building of the police commissariat.
After he accepted to have made the above declarations, Musta was freed by the police. He accepted that he has not been maltreated. ssh/kled/xh/sh/
Foreign Minister Tritan Shehu considered unnecessary the presence of the army in these institutions since the situation seemed to be completely calm.
Today too, although right wing political forces had called for a protest, this did not prevent the lifting of the military contingent deployed to guard public buildings, ministries, banks, Radiotelevision, ATA.
Nevertheless, these forces are still on the alert and may be used if need be.
The Albanian parliament decided on January 26 that a limited number of soldiers from the Republic Armed Forces came to the assistance of the Interior Ministry to protect state and public institutions.
Because of the violent protests of several people affected by the collapse of pyramid savings schemes, protests lead by the left opposition, in several cities of Albania, including Lushnja, Berat, Korca, and Vlora, state and public institutions, such as city-halls, cultural premises and other institutions, were gravely damaged and set to fire.
A great number of policemen were injured by the violent acts of angry crowds. During last Monday's demonstration in Tirana, the crowd of people also attempted to attack the parliament seat.
President Berisha said at yesterday's news conference that the imposition of the state of emergency was not necessary in the case of Albania and that the soldiers were deployed around institutions to replace injured police officers. Berisha said that this would continue for a limited period.lm/xh/sh/
"In its today's meeting, the Government," said Premier Meksi, "examined the draft of the law presented by the Special Government Commission regarding the distribution of the frozen funds and monetary values of the foundations, which now have ceased functioning. The draft sanctions the modalities, the observation of deadlines, the commitments of the government to the process which would certainly be delicate because the interests of all should be taken into consideration. The law envisages the way how the monetary values, which will be drawn from the assets of the foundations and the foundation founders, will be confiscated, sold and distributed."
"The draft law will be presented to the Parliament today," said Meksi. ssh/kled/xh/sh/
"Compared to the same period, a year ago the daily turnover has dropped 50 percent," said the owner of a bar in Tirana.
The glorious days of big profits for hundreds of bar in Tirana and other cities as well, seem to be over, with the fall of pyramid schemes. A considerable amount of people's interest from these pyramids used to go into the pokets of the merchants.
On the other side part of the traders, whom had deposited their savings on the pyramid schemes, have lost them. For more than a year many bar owners had lost their interest in properly serving their clients for the incomes from pyramid schemes were higher then their profits from the bars. These traders, who have lost their money and clients are towards bunkruptcy.
The continuation of pyramid schemes for some years brought about a high consume of industrial and food stuff articles, which according to the specialists after their collapse will influence the consume drop .... to be continued
According to the manager of this company branch in Durres, Qendro Selimi, only 18 per cent of the capitals of the company are ensured from the informal market. The company has a number of activities in the field of food industry, tourism and money-exchange in and outside the country. kled/xh/sh/
The Right Democratic Party, the Party of Democratic Ideal, the Right Republican Party and the Association of the Formerly Politically Persecuted had presented a request yesterday in the No 2 police commissariat in Tirana, asking permission for a manifestation on Thursday.
The police commissariat had not approved their demand for the manifestation, spokesman of the Public Order Ministry, Ndrek Gjini reports, because police had information on possible criminal acts that might take place.
On this basis, today in the morning representatives of police had a meeting with some of the leaders of these subjects in the headquarters of the Association of the Formerly Politically Persecuted, making them clear the reasons why their request was not approved.
"Nevertheless, the representatives of these subjects were summoned by police where they were told of the consequences stemming from violation of the provisions for demonstrations. Then they were left free.
The demonstrators had gathered in response to a call of the association of the formerly politically persecuted and small right wing parties, "against corruption, against thieves of pyramid schemes."
The above right wing parties are small, without any weight in the Albanian political life. kled/xh/sh/
A resolution adopted by majority of votes by the deputies of 40 countries, proposed the creation of a mixed parliamentary commission, government and opposition, to prepare the draft of a new constitution, which would create the framework for the good conduct of the coming elections.
Speaking in the debate, the European parliamentarian Gustavo Selva invited the Council of Europe to "be neutral regarding the issue of the eventual date of the coming elections" in Albania. Speaking about the violent acts carried out in Tirana, Gustavo Selva said that "no solidarity with those who attacked the Parliament building" and accused the left wing "of exploiting the people's manifestations."
The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe asked that the Constitution be compiled by a parliamentary commission. The Assembly did not demand new elections. kled/xh/sh/