Gramoz Ruci, Coordination Secretary of the Socialist party and Neritan Ceka, head of the Democratic Alliance party, said to ATA that the candidates were selected on the percentage criterion.
"Most of the candidates were accepted without any problem because the local officials came up with clear ideas. They were not divided according to party percentage but to their skills," Ceka said to ATA.
The party round table will decide on other five candidates on Saturday four of whom are mayors.
The partial local elections will be held on June 21 in seven municipalities and 9 communes. s.s/mima/ak/
The head of the commission, Musa Ulqini, read a statement of protest, which was embraced by all the heads of the parliamentary groups.
On Sunday evening, an explosive blast took place explosive in the house of the Koha Jone correspondent in Vlore.
The explosive, placed by unidentified persons, wrecked the house and injured four children: two of the Luka family and two of the next-door neighbour. s.sh/mima/lm/
The deputies of the Democratic party (DP) voted against the law in general as they had reservations on the commission's composition.
Deputy head of the Central Election Commission (CEC), who is proposed by the opposition, enjoys the same juridical position with the head elected by the majority after the changes passed by the parliament on Wednesday.
"Commission's seats are equally divided between the government coalition party and opposition," the supplement to the article 5 said.
The draft said that "the seats will be divided to party representatives according to the average percentage in the latest nationwide parliamentary elections and local government bodies."
These changes, proposed by the Council of Ministers, were presented to deputies by Bashkim Fino, the deputy prime minister and minister of local government, and were submitted to parliament in the run-up to local elections scheduled on June 21.
The law defines the time of the polls open at 08.00 a.m. and close at 18.00 p.m., but if there are people voting then the polling stations will remain open until the last person votes.
Amendments to the law on elections in local government bodies has been discussed in a round table of political party representatives called by the president Rexhep Meidani. s.sh/mima/ak/
The Council of Europe organised on May 12-13 in Florina, Greece, a seminar on decentralization and interborder cooperation through Albanian and Greek border local authorities with the participation of heads of district councils and municipalities, prefects of Korša and Kozani.
Specialists of prefectures spoke of possibilities of cooperation in case of catastrophe, environmental protection and extension of cross-border contacts.
The seminar was greeted by representatives of respective ministries of local government, Taulant Dedja (Korce) and Evdokia Sereli (Kozani), and the prefect of Korša Bardhi Ališkolli and that of Western Macedonia Aris Papadopoulos. s.sh/mima/ak/
The scholar and historian from Durres, Hasan Ulqini, has adapted 120 maritime terms to Albanian and Italian languages.
The publication of these terms has been accompanied with an editorial note, which points to the special importance of this dictionary not only for Albania but also for all the countries on the Adriatic shores.
Ulqini says that Volaj's drawings of the ships dating back to the previous century on the Ishmi coast are impressive. /a.ke/mima/lm/
"The police forces have identified the persons responsible for the criminal acts and the vehicle used to transport the explosive matter," Nexhipi told reporters.
The first blast took place at the Dervician bridge, some five km from the Gjirokaster city and the second at the Goranxi bridge, one km from the city.
"The two explosions are result of an amount of two kg TNT each. A conic hole 25 cm deep and 90 cm2 has been opened at the Dervician bridge, and the supporting legs of the Goranxi bridge have been damaged," said Nexhipi.
However, the explosions have not hindered the vehicles' traffic on this segment of the national road. /s.s/mima/lm/
The project's coordinator, Mateo Kraja, said that through the granted funds is aimed the fostering of teaching methods by applying contemporary ones.
Also, will be rehabilitated the labs of secondary schools with new equipment.
A special attention in projects will be paid in setting up libraries in the schools and a $6,000 is allocated for this purpose.
According to Kraja some of these projects regard the further training of Luigj Gurakuqi" university professors, especially in drafting new text books. /gen/
Tirana, May 13 (ATA) - This week the World Bank approved a $17 million credit to Albania for the Durres port project.
The project will improve the efficiency and capacity of the Port of Durres by increasing its commercial operations through the establishment of an autonomous port authority, privatization of port operations, improvement of customs procedures, operations and safety.
It will also rehabilitate port's infrastructure to accommodate anticipated traffic and attract transit traffic as well.
The project consists of the following components, port civil works ($8,1 million). Rehabilitation and strengthening works to enable Durres port to cope with expected volume and safety concerns of future traffic.
Navigation aids ($0,2 million). Maintenance of the channel entrance, replacement as necessary of buoys and lights and other safety standards which require repairs.
Port lightening ($1,5 million). Up to three port warehouses will be rehabilitated to provide a bonded warehouse for customs and facilitate leasing or concessioning.
Modernization of cranes ($5,9 million). Rehabilitation of up to 12 quay cranes for handling equipment.
Anti pollution actions (0,4 million). Supply of floating dams, dispersants and related equipment will assist in preventing any potential oil spill from occurring along the seashore.
Customs modernization ($0,4 million). Expansion of the fiscal zone to the whole port area.
Miscellaneous equipment (0,4 million). Provision of office equipment and materials for the Port of Durres Authority, the harbour master's office, the institute of transport studies in Tirana and the project management unit.
Studies ($1 million). Analyses will be done on the future role of the secondary ports in Albania.
The prevention of possible pollution in the port areas, physical and chemical analyses of the soil for maintenance or deepening purposes and urban transport improvements for the city of Tirana.
Technical assistance ($1 million). Assistance in the privatization and regulation of private operators and in establishing a training centre. Supervision of port works and a project coordinator will also be provided.
Training ($0,4 million). Adequate training of port staff and private operators.
Total project cost including contingencies is $23 million. The Albanian government is providing $1 million and the OPEC Fund for International Development is providing $5 million of the total cost.
The credit will be disbursed on standards IDA terms with a maturity of 40 years and a grace period of 10 years.
Since joining IDA in 1991, IDA commitments to Albania total approximately $313 million for 25 projects, excluding those approved this week. /gen/
He quoted it as saying: "Milosevic broke the promise he gave to his followers, the Serb electorate, ten days ago, that he would not accept any kind of mediation in the Kosova problem. Holbrooke was the mediator who obliged Milosevic to meet Rugova and discuss the future of Kosova. So far, Rugova had not accepted that Belgrade be the venue of the meeting with the Serbian side, but tomorrow's meeting would be held in Belgrade. Thus, the first meeting marked the removing of taboos."
The commentary said that the Rugova-Milosevic meeting speeded up the dramatic events taking place in the last three months.
"The Albanian determination changes the Albanian political lethargy and Serb terrorist arrogance. Thus, nothing is as it was yesterday and tomorrow, nothing will be as it is today. The Albanian reality is changing, at the time when the Serbian political attitude towards Kosova is expected to change totally," it said.
"But Milosevic, who tries to profit as anyone else, has naturally done and will do the calculation on the meeting. Facing the U.S. and international pressure and the liberation reality in Kosova, the main responsible for crimes in Kosova, is trying to create a new breathing space for his criminal perfidy.
"Meanwhile, Rugova's position has not been eased at all. The responsibility to carry out the national aim for the independence of Kosova, though it seems to avert an Albanian-Serbian total war, does not avoid it totally," the commentary said.
"Kosova's independence has also a real wing, besides the political one. This is a priority of the Albanian politics, which does not make the president of the occupied Kosova feel inferior in front of the president of the occupying Serbia. The meeting in Belgrade is neither the start not the end of the Albanian-Serbian problems. It is part of the dramatic reality, now even for Serbia but it would be lucky to become part of the history," the commentary ended. pta/mima/ak/
The previous contract with Sarandopulos was suspended last year with the start of the unrest after considerable damage worth $2 million in equipment were inflicted on the company.
According to international rules these damage will be paid off to the company.
In fact for work to resume in 11 bridges, suspende since last year, only the approval of the World Bank is expected, and if this decision will be given soon, works in these objects will be completely over within three months.
He said that the patrol boats intercepted the dinghies at 22.00 on Wednesday and forced them to turn back to the Albanian shore despite the efforts of Albanians to avoid the patrol.
"Not only as an officer but also as a civilian, I call on the consciousness of the Albanian brothers and sisters not to fall prey of an unscrupulous trafficking of people in dangerous travels which can cost their lives," Caci said to ATA, at the end of his six-month mission in Albania.
The Guardia di Finanzia turned back six dinghies with Albanians aboard on Monday evening which left Vlora bay for Italy. ake/mima/ak/
"The expenditures of Alimucaj and his family have been astronomical, if compared to those of an Albanian family above the average level. Dinners are numerous," says one of the prosecutors, who refused to be identified.
Large unjustified amounts have been spent by this company such as rich rewards for many persons who, in various ways, have extolled to the sky the "wondering" values VEFA.
The bills of millions of leks profited by several newspapers, whose titles will be made public, are also filed, the sources confirm.
The aforesaid accusations are added to the charge of "embezzlement in large mounts in complicity and by fraud", on whose basis the Appeals Court of Tirana on Wednesday ruled unlimited detainment against Alimuca and his three accomplices. /s.s/mima/lm/
Besnik Alibali, head of the committee, said to ATA that yesterday's meeting strongly protested against barbarous acts of placing mines in Kosova which had caused casualties among the innocent Albanian civilians.
The press release said that the creation of mined sites in Kosova could turn its territory in a dangerous residential area like Bosnia, Mozambique, Angola, Afghanistan and others.
It also called on the Albanian government to sign the Treaty of Ottawa on preventing use, store, production and transfer of mines against people and their destruction as an action which would serve stability and peace in the region. ake/mima/ak/
He said the yet unspecified scholarships have been earmarked by the Turkish Government, in the context of the cooperation existing between the Ministry of Education and Science of the Albanian Republic and the National Ministry of Higher Education of the Republic of Turkey. /s.s/mima/lm/
"We consider the Albanian-Serb dialogue a positive step ahead towards peace in the region and hope the meeting enables an end to Serb violence against the Albanian innocent population," Vili Minarolli, member of the Democratic party presidency, said to ATA on Thursday.
But Minarolli was pessimistic about the outcome of the talks as, according to him, an education agreement signed between Albanians of Kosova and Belgrade two years ago was not implemented yet.
"The initiative of the U.S. special envoys, Holbrooke and Gelbard, to enable such a meeting should be praised. We will support and consider right any decision to be taken by the Albanian side in these talks," Neritan Alibali, member of the RP leadership, told ATA.
Alibali said that the RP remains sceptic as regards Milosevic's policy as, he said, he has so far maintained two different stands.
"On one hand Milosevic appears to be ready for talks and on the other hand he sends military troops to Kosova to suppress the Albanians."
The beginning of the Prishtine-Belgrade dialogue is considered very significant also by the Albanian government, which, through a statement on Wednesday evening, called this meeting a step forward on the path towards the solution to the conflict in Kosova. /s.s/mima/ak/lm/
The Minister of Education and Science Et'hem Ruka brought to the fore in his discussion moments of the development of the policies of professional training in this field whereas the deputy Minister of Health, Dine Abazi made a panorama of the health policies applied in Albania.
The seminar was also addressed by the President of Albania, Rexhep Meidani. /s.s./mima/xh/
The President's press and information office reports that referring to the situation in Albania, Mr Meidani said that a "National Acting Plan" needs to be drafted. He also pointed out that a parliamentary commission on the questions of children would encourage initiatives and improve the cooperation with foreign donors.
Socialization of children, improvement of the conditions for their leisure time, the responsibility of the society and the state towards the life of the children, the sense of collective responsibility in this direction were the main questions discussed in the meeting.
President Meidani and those present stressed the need of a greater support of the press and media in general for every act for social emancipation which helps the life of the children and the unprotected strata of the society. /s.sh/das/xh/
The constitution experts Esat Stavileci, Riza Smaka and Arsim Bajrami from Prishtina and Abdulla Aliu from Tetova appreciated the possibility created to them to give their assistance on the draft-constitution during a meeting held Thursday with the co-chairmen of the constitution drafting commission, Sabri Godo and Arben Imami.
They expressed the readiness to make remarks and offer suggestions regarding different parts of the draft, after the ideas and suggestions made for special articles.
"There is enough scope in the Constitution and no legal obstacles are created to the Albanian state for the realization of the aspiration of the Albanian nation," said Imami during the meeting.
The professors, who have come in Albania upon the invitation of Godo and Imami, participated even in the symposium which is held in Tirana on the three powers: the Legislative, the Executive and the Judiciary in the new Constitution.
The constitution experts also held a meeting on Wednesday with the President of the Republic, Rexhep Meidani. /s.sh/das/mt/
On Thursday, during the second day of the symposium on the three powers (the Legislative, the Executive and the Judiciary) in the Constitution, the participants discussed on the division of competencies between the President and the Government.
"The discussions presented the idea that the President must be biassed and the executive competencies must be exercised by the Prime Minister and the Government," a member of the jurists' staff close to the Constitution Commission, Krenar Loloci, told ATA.
He added that after the foreseen division of competencies, "the President should intervene mainly in cases of crisis and extraordinary situations."
"The draft-constitution aims at strengthening the competencies of the government, meanwhile that the President cannot intervene in normal situations," said Loloci.
The symposium also treated issues of autonomy of the local government and voiced the necessity of having its security, created by the independence of the budget. /s.sh/das/mt/
"The meeting on Wednesday decided that the final report should be drafted on the basis of thoughts of all the commission. Its compiling will start since today and will be ready on Saturday," Braho told ATA on Thursday.
He confirmed that the report will be presented to Parliament within May 25.
Braho warned on Wednesday that if the report which will be presented to parliament will not be exact, he will publish the culprits and consequences of last year's turmoil.
A preliminary report, presented in Parliament in February of this year, was criticized by the deputies for not being concrete on the responsibilities of last year riots when the state was destroyed. /s.sh/das/mt/
The press and information department in the Foreign Ministry reported that Milo briefed on the situation in Kosova and appreciated the U.S. role and contribution for the beginning of dialogue between the two parties. The former ministers expressed the confidence the United States and the other countries of the Contact Group will continue to offer their contribution for the fair solution of the Kosova issue and the realization of peace in the region.
The beginning of negotiations between the Albanian leader Rugova and Yugoslav President Milosevic was considered during the meeting as the first step which would influence on calming the situation in Kosova. But the development should be followed step by step without euphoria and with realism.
The former Foreign Ministers suggested that the international factor should be present in the talks between Prishtina and Belgrade in order to guarantee the solution of problems in Kosova. Albania, on its side, should define its strategy to precede the situations and to implement a preventing diplomacy.
Also, the former Foreign Ministers suggested to the Albanian state and diplomacy to maintain a more active stand in order to secure the presence of the international structure of the collective security in Kosova. /s.sh/das/mt/
Austria's Ambassador in Albania, Arno Ridel in the meeting he had on Thursday with the Albanian State Secretary for European Integration, Ilir meta, pointed out the readiness of his Government to further consolidate the relations between the two countries and to help Albania in the European intergation processes, says a press release of the Albanian Foreign Ministry.
It adds that Meta and Ridel had exchanged opinions on the fruitful cooperation between Albania and Austria and on the perspective bilateral relations.
Meta said that "along the bilateral cooperation, Austria may help Albania's further integration in the European Union, because it will soon have its rotating turn in the presiding of this important organization."
The senior officials exchanged opinions on the situation in Kosove, the settlement of the crisis there and prevention of its spillover in the region. /s.s./das/xh/
Gjinushi, considering as important the meetings he held with senior officials of the Council of Europe, said that "it exists the will of the political institutions of Europe to help Albania in the development of its democratic reform." /a.ke/das/mt/