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Albanian Telegraphic Agency (ATA), 99-01-23

Albanian Telegraphic Agency Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Albanian Telegraphic Agency (ATA) Home Page at <>

Albanian Telegraphic Agency


  • [01] Customs staff in Kakavija arrested
  • [02] Bus line company warns of one-day strike
  • [03] Police chief says everything starts through order and law
  • [04] Foreign construction companies to respect contracts - minister
  • [05] Albania PM says Balkans asks for not only rhetorical signals (Macedonia PM says no serious problems in bilateral relations)
  • [06] Armed Serbs block part of Nevolan village, Vushtri
  • [07] Kosovapress says Serbs seized near Vushtri were armed
  • [08] Tirana currency rate
  • [09] Albania interested in a political solution to Kosova crisis
  • [10] Norway provides aid for Albanian agriculture
  • [11] Billions of leks deposited in banks
  • [12] Oil company changes name in Albania Petroleum Company
  • [13] Albpetrol reduces fuel prices
  • [14] Vineyards and wine industry in Albania towards rehabilitation
  • [15] Father Gjergj Suli - Martyr of Albanian Autochephalous Orthodox Church - portrait
  • [16] Albanian NGOs demand more competence for police in uncovering organized drug-trafficking
  • [17] Police will work hard to hit crime in Tirane - Head of Department
  • [18] Albanian police to be closer to problems and concerns of people
  • [19] Quality of information keeps improving
  • [20] Defence Ministry only protects territorial integrity of Albania
  • [21] Public order - main problem for Albanian society
  • [22] Moments of tension among owners of speedboats and Vlore police
  • [23] Government to help improvement of situation in Berat

  • [01] Customs staff in Kakavija arrested

    GJIROKASTER, Jan 22 (ATA) - By H. Cani: Judicial police of Tirana arrested on Thursday evening Sotir Davella accusing him of favouring contraband at the Kakavija border crossing.

    The Directorate General of Customs House had brought a law suit against him a week earlier, a police official in Gjirokaster said to ATA on Friday.

    The same source said that Davella had allowed a truck loaded with iron estimates at 1.2 million leks to pass the border crossing without clearing the customs.

    Sources of the local prosecutor's office said that the Directorate General of Customs House had brought a law suit against nine customs officials of this border crossing accusing them of favouring contraband.

    This is the first case after two years that the customs officials are brought before justice. /lh/ak/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [02] Bus line company warns of one-day strike

    GJIROKASTER, Jan 22 (ATA) - By H. Cani: Bus line company "Argjiro" in Gjirokaster has issued a petition on Friday to the local prefecture warning it for a one-day strike because the Ministry of Order and that of Transport have failed to issue licences.

    The head of the company said that in the last seven months both ministries had not issued licences for the normal legal activity of the company.

    The same sources said to ATA that both ministries refused to give explanations for that.

    Argjiro company is the biggest of this kind in the southern part of Albania which numbers 20 buses and has employed over 50 persons.

    "Failing to issue the licence not only hinders the activity of the company but also favours transport of citizens by van and cab as well as increasing the fare," the petition said. /lh/ak/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [03] Police chief says everything starts through order and law

    TIRANA, Jan 22 (ATA) - By Th. Thanasi: New chief of the police directorate of Tirana Mithat Havari said to ATA on Friday that the motto of the police was "everything starts through order and law."

    Every police staff should work more to return Tirana its reputation, order and law which was needed by its citizens, Havari said without negating the fight against crime.

    Though he did not pretend to achieve the maximum in fight against crime, because there had been and would be problems of crimes as everywhere in the civilized world, Havari hoped that they should worked more to guarantee order and tranquillity in the capital.

    "Our aim is that order police should have the situation under control and none can dare violate the laws. Those who violate laws take advantage of the situation when police units are not doing their best and moreover when special elements from the police ranks cooperate with crime. But we should bar these tendencies," he said.

    According to Havari one of the keys to success would be contacts with the people.

    "I have ordered all the chiefs of the police stations, respective section chiefs in the Directorate to listen always to the claims and concerns of the people," Havari said.

    Road traffic is another problem for the capital which according to Havari would be resolved soon. No vehicle would allowed to park in sidewalks or places where parking is not allowed, he said, adding that those who break the law would be punished.

    Police of Tirana will also have under control all state institutions and schools.

    "Every police inspector of the area will be in continuous contact with the principal of the school to avoid any concern arising among pupils and students," Havari said. /ak/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [04] Foreign construction companies to respect contracts - minister

    TIRANA, Jan 22 (ATA) - Minister of Public Works and Transport Ingrid Shuli held a meeting on Friday with staff of foreign companies engaged in construction of national roads in Albania and urged them to observe contracts.

    A spokesman of the ministry said that representatives of foreign companies such as Sarantopoulos, Falcione, Behase, Etep-Meton, Italstrade, Mak-Albania, Mavrovo, Granit, briefed her on the works and their concerns.

    They promised to carry out the projects within the defined schedule by contract and according to technical parameters. Among troubles they faced during the work they ranked those related to expropriation, safety during work and facilities for their technical means to enter Albania territory.

    Minister Shuli asked them to reconsider work plans and hand them over to her cabinet in order that projects be supervised and reconsidered by the Road Directorate.

    The meeting said that those companies who failed to meet obligations would be punished according to the contract. /ssh/ak/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [05] Albania PM says Balkans asks for not only rhetorical signals (Macedonia PM says no serious problems in bilateral relations)

    TIRANA, Jan 22 (ATA) - The crisis in Kosova and relations between Albania and Macedonia were two key topics of negotiations on Friday between official delegations headed by Albanian prime minister Pandeli Majko and his Macedonian counterpart Ljubco Georgievski.

    Cabinet of prime minister reported that both prime ministers held a tete-a-tete meeting and did not issue any statement after the negotiations.

    Prime minister Majko said at the start of the official meeting that the visit of his Macedonian counterpart was a welcomed visit in Albania.

    "The fact that you have come first to my country shows the importance your cabinet devoted to the relations with Albania," Majko said.

    The climate of Albanian-Macedonian relations is an example of a new climate in relations all over the Balkan region, Majko said.

    Albanian prime minister praised the decisions of the Macedonian government as regards the access to two NATO missions on a peaceful solution to the Kosova crisis and considered them "a friendly act even for Albania."

    Majko said that "the new Balkans urges not only rhetorical signals now that the war is so near." He favoured a consequent NATO intervention for a solution to the crisis in Kosova.

    Prime minister Majko praised the level of bilateral economic relations and urged their boosting. He hailed his counterpart for his invitation to Albanians in Macedonia for co-governing. He also hailed the intitiative of the Albanian parliament on an amnesty to Albanian administration officials in Macedonia and increasing flexibility of the Macedonian government in relations with the Albanian population in Macedonia.

    Macedonian prime minister Georgievski said that the fact that his first official visit was in Albania showed the relations between the two countries had been consolidated. He favoured a new climate of cooperation in the Balkans according to Euro-Atlantic tendency.

    Georgievski said that there existed a wide consensus for an active participation of Albanians in the Macedonian government.

    "We do not see any serious problems in bilateral relations between both countries," he said.

    As regards the crisis in Kosova, the Macedonian prime minister said that his government backed all alternatives accepted by the international community on its peaceful solution.

    He shared the same view with the prime minister Majko on the plan proposed by the U.S. Ambassador Chris Hill for a temporary solution to the crisis in Kosova, a three-year transition period with institutions established and later a new status.

    Georgievski invited prime minister Majko for an official visit to Skopje in spring. Majko said that such a meeting can be advanced due to developments in Kosova. /pas/ak/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [06] Armed Serbs block part of Nevolan village, Vushtri

    PRISHTINE, Jan 23 (ATA) - Serb police forces arrived on Friday in Nevolan village, Vushtri, while armed Serbs blocked part of the village, sources of the Kosovo Information Center said referring to sources of the Democratic League of Kosova (LDK) in Vushtri.

    Members of the verifying mission were also present at the village, the same source said adding that there were Serb reinforcement in the village, too.

    Two Albanians were killed and three others wounded late on Thursday in the region between Bellacerke and Sponiq village near Rahovec. A burned body beyond recognition was found at the site, a OSCE verifier said. Inhabitants said to the Human Right Council that heavy explosions were heard from the scene.

    Another Albanian was killed and taken to the Prishtina morgue by Serb police, while Albanian sources said that he was killed by fire arms and his body bore signs of torture. /pta/ak/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [07] Kosovapress says Serbs seized near Vushtri were armed

    PRISHTINE, Jan 23 (ATA) - Five Serbs seized on Thursday in Novolan village near Vushtri were armed with two machine-guns, three automatic rifles and 1 500 cartridges, Kosova press agency reported on Friday.

    The same sources said that it was thought that "the seized including three man and two women were members of the Serb paramilitary forces who are killing and mistreating the Albanian population of the area."

    The news was reported on Friday by the Serbian press center in Prishtina but it did not elaborate that the five seized were armed.

    The Serb source said that "the five Serbs were kidnapped by Albanian fighters of KLA on Thursday midnight and that the uniforms of the group who kidnapped them bore the insignia of the Kosova Liberation Army (KLA)." /pas/ak/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [08] Tirana currency rate

    Tirana, Jan 23 (ATA) - By L. Thanasi: Following are the buying and selling rates of foreign currencies against the Leks in the Bank of Tirana on Saturday.
    US $1.00	140.10
    German Mark	 83.50
    Italian Lire	 83.80
    Greek Drachmas	 50.00
    EURO		162.20
    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [09] Albania interested in a political solution to Kosova crisis

    TIRANA, Jan 23 (ATA) - By I. Luto: An international conference on latest developments in the Kosova region, strategies and options for a peaceful solution gathered in Athens on Friday politicians, scholars, academicians, journalists from all the regional countries as well as representatives of international bodies.

    The conference was organised by the Greek Foundation on European and Foreign Policy.

    Press office at the Foreign Ministry said to ATA that the Albanian delegation was headed by the Secretary of State for European Integration Maqo Lakrori.

    Dealing with the nature of the crisis in Kosova, Lakrori said that "it was caused by the internal crisis of the regime of Milosevic, internal developments in present Yugoslavia and especially in Serbia."

    He pointed out that "the Albanian government said that a solution to the crisis is the respect of the will of Albanians in Kosova and international accepted principles and norms."

    "We will continue to encourage compatriots in Kosova to intensify their efforts in adopting a unique attitude in the frame work of a political process. We are interested in their cohesion and political solution," Lakrori said.

    The conference was addressed by Greece's foreign minister Theodoros Pangalous who briefed about efforts of Greece in preventing the conflict in Kosova.

    Referring to the massacre in Recak, he said that "they who kill in Kosova should know that they would be punished" and that "the international community cannot accept crime and violence."

    Pangalous reiterated his government's attitude stressing that Greece would not participate in military operations that might be held in Kosova. /pas/ak/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [10] Norway provides aid for Albanian agriculture

    TIRANA, Jan 23 (ATA) - By E. Xhajanka: Non government associations of Norway are providing aid for the "Elbanor" association of zootechnicians which include equipment and machines for hay processing.

    The cooperation between non-government association of Norway with the Elbasan city has started in 1994. Norway has sent a fund worth US$250 thousand to rehabilitate examining laboratories, US$50 thousand for the agricultural school and 27 air conditions for ox-stables and biological materials.

    Norwegian specialists and Albanian zootechnicians are discussing a wider project in zootechnics. /pas/ak/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [11] Billions of leks deposited in banks

    TIRANA, Jan 23 (ATA) - By L. Thanasi: Bank of Albania said that some 158 billion leks, large part of them or 124 billion leks by individuals, have been deposited in banks.

    The other part belongs to the state enterprises estimated at 14 billion leks, other financial institutions (INSIG) some 5 billion leks and private sector some 15 billion leks.

    Most preferred deposits by clients are definite term deposits with some 104 billion leks followed by deposits in foreign currency with some 39 billion leks and indefinite term deposits with some 15 billion leks.

    Since 1998 indefinite term deposits have been increasingly reduced while definite term deposits have been increased. Deposits in foreign currency have increased in the last months of 1998. /pas/ak/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [12] Oil company changes name in Albania Petroleum Company

    FIER, Jan 23 (ATA) - By Harilla Koci: Albania petroleum Company is the new name of the Albanian oil company and this is the final variant selected among proposals which are conform to new structures in the oil system.

    "Three companies will function as a one body under the same name, but under a common strategy," Piro Liko, Marketing Director of the Albpetrol said to ATA.

    He said that the other companies are Albpetrol, Armo and Servcom who will act in different sectors of oil drilling, investing and processing.

    The reorganisation which is going to start within the first three- month period of the year foresees a series of fundamental changes such as reduction of production cost, proper investment orientation, improvement of discipline in work and others.

    Albpetrol has some 15 affiliates, six of which in oil drilling in existing sources which produce some 1.030 tons of crude oil. /pas/ak/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [13] Albpetrol reduces fuel prices

    FIER, Jan 23 (ATA) - By Harilla Koci: Albpetrol company has reduced the prices of fuel by 43 and 90 leks per liter against 45 and 100 leks per liter it was for gasoline and benzine respectively.

    Piro Liko, chief of the marketing department, said to ATA that the reduction in prices was part of the strategy of Albpetrol in the Albanian fuel market. These products, when brought from the import, are sold at a minimal prize of 50 and 103 lek per liter.

    Actually, Albpetrol controls 45-50 % of the Albanian fuel market. It processes everyday 1 000 tons of crude oil, the equal amount of the average daily production from the Albanian oil bearing areas.

    In August-October 1998 period, this corporation managed to control up to 70 of the local fuel market, and this is considered as the most successful period after 1990 when the fuel production had frequent oscillations and periods of crisis. Fuel marketing has been many a time mentioned as one of the most affected by corruption, and consequently leaders of it have been not rarely replaced. /pas/ak/xh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [14] Vineyards and wine industry in Albania towards rehabilitation

    TIRANE, Jan.23 (ata) - By E Xhajanka: With the approval of the law "On vineyards, wines and other by products" for the first time vineyards and the wine production in Albania are based on a legislation which aims to give an impetus to this sector.

    The law is based on 3-4 European laws and especially in the Spanish one because it was considered as the most adaptable for the conditions in Albania.

    In the past years, vineyards in Albania have been put in the hands of private owners. For different reasons, after 1990, thousand of hectares planted with vines were destroyed. Therefore, the wine industry, most of which privatized, remained without raw material.

    Now the sector of vineyards is being rehabilitated and new plots have been planted with vines.

    "From 2-3 thousands of vineyards that were two or three years ago, now there are about 5 thousand hectares and the demand for more vines to be sown is increasing. If the same rates are maintained, we will soon have 30 thousand hectares of vines" said Adrian Doko, Director of the Plants Production in the Ministry of Agriculture.

    "The Ministry of Agriculture, said Doko, is applying a project to assist the vineyard sector, envisaging an investment with 3 billion lira by the Italian Government."

    Also for the wine industry, the Ministry is drafting some projects in cooperation with the Italian and German governments. /pas/xh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [15] Father Gjergj Suli - Martyr of Albanian Autochephalous Orthodox Church - portrait

    TIRANE, Jan.23 (ata) - By Enkelejda Riza: The Albanian Autochephalous Orthodox Church will commemorate the 51st anniversary of the death of Father Gjergj Jakov Suli, one of the Albanian Orthodox clericals with a broad culture and who during all his lifetime worked with devotion for the Word of God.

    Born in 1893 in Tepelene, Father Gjergj was distinguished since young for his wisdom and cleverness in the school of the village and later in the secondary school Zosimea of Ioannina, which was also attended by many outstanding Albanian patriots.

    In 1922 Father Gjergj emigrated in the U.S. where he lived and worked in Boston and Philadelphia for 12 years. There he attended a religious school and was ordained a priest. He worked with My Lord Fan Stilian Noli and had a close friendship with him. He was a distinguished member and activist of the Association "Vatra."

    After his return to Albania in 1934, he started his work as a priest in Lekel and served throughout the zone of Labove, Terbuq, Hundkuq etc. , and continued his relations with Noli and other patriot emigrants.

    He had a great indignation with the fascist occupation of Albania. He dreamt of a new and free democratic Albania, an aspiration which was not realised even after the war ended. He knew that with the establishment of the communist regime, after the example of the Russian Bolshevism, the freedom of conscience and that of the ownership would lose in Albania too.

    Being a learned person, and knowing several foreign languages, and the regular letter exchange with other patriots in America, were the reasons why the former regime arrested him in 1946 under the standard charge used for many clericals and intellectuals at that time as "collaborator of Greeks, Anglo-Americans, an opponent to the regime," etc.

    In the prison of Gjirokaster, with its walls with water and ice, Father Gjergj could resist the tortures with the belief in God.

    In January 1948, Father Gjergj was executed.

    An irreversible damage was made to the library and the many letters of correspondence that Father Gjergj had had with many patriots abroad for several years. /pas/xh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [16] Albanian NGOs demand more competence for police in uncovering organized drug-trafficking

    TIRANE, Jan.23 (ata) - By Urim Bajrami: Some non-governmental organizations in Albania have demanded more competence for police in this country in uncovering organized drug-trafficking and a closer cooperation of it with all associations which have the fight against drug-trafficking and drug-addiction as their objective.

    This demand comes from the Alcohol and Drug-addicts Monitoring Centre of the association "To the benefit of Albanian Woman" together with many other Albanian organizations similar to it.

    The NGO-s leaders say that the drug-addicts are on the increase and the state must intervene as soon as possible to avoid this phenomenon.

    According to NGO-s statistics, over 10 000 drug-addicts are in Albania at present, with 7 people registered as dead from overdose. /dast/xh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [17] Police will work hard to hit crime in Tirane - Head of Department

    TIRANE, Jan.23 (ata) - By Th Thanasi: Tirane police will work day and night, not claiming they will restore law and order within a week, but they will systematically hit ordinary and organized crime, stated Saturday to ATA colonel Mithat Havari, head of Police Department of the Prefecture of Tirane.

    Without negating the capability of the specialists in various police sectors of Tirane, who know the situation very well, Havari thinks that "perhaps there has been some unwillingness to work and hit organized crime unhesitatingly in Tirane."

    "Nobody has been forcefully brought in the ranks of police and nobody keeps policemen through force in the ranks of police and my vision is that working with police must not be considered as a road to get rich," said Havari.

    According to him, one of the reasons for the lack of tranquility in the capital is that police, in some cases, "have been made one with the crime." He added that the first road to prevent corruption in the ranks of police is, without doubt, a strict accomplishment of every task and the dismissal of the incapable police members. /dast/xh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [18] Albanian police to be closer to problems and concerns of people

    TIRANE, Jan.23 (ata) - By U Bajrami: On the basis of the new Constitution of Albania, the structures of Public Order Ministry will no longer be part of the structures of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Albania. But which will be their future?

    Representatives of the press office in this ministry explain that the separation of police from the structures of Armed Forces puts them in a position closer to the problems and concerns of the people.

    The Public Order Ministry offers, in the interest of police-public cooperation, communication with the central and local administration, with mass media, political parties, organizations, associations, religious communities, etc. The Ministry also offers seriousness and competence in treating the problems related with possible police-public incidents or the violation of fundamental human rights.

    The press office said that police forces ask understanding by all for the responsibilities and present difficulties of police in maintaining public order and tranquility.

    "The mission of police is that, all together, to make Albania a country in which we will be safe and live without fear." /dast/xh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [19] Quality of information keeps improving

    TIRANE, Jan.23 (ata) - By E Nepravishta: Coverage of local political and socioeconomic events is one of the preoccupations of Albanian nationals. Although there is some dissatisfaction regarding the level of information and lack of faith in the media, Albanians do follow considerably the news.

    According to UNDP, the first place in the sources of information is taken by television, with 46 per cent, followed by radio with 30 per cent and the press coming third with 24 per cent.

    According to Albanian Media Institute, 57.63 per cent of the people interviewed on the quality of the news in media, think that there has been some improvement, 33.37 per cent think that the level of information is low and 8.30 per cent do not know to valuate the quality of the news. /dast/xh/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [20] Defence Ministry only protects territorial integrity of Albania

    - Defence Ministry spokesman explains -

    TIRANA, Jan. 23 (ATA) - The Albanian Defence Ministry, through its spokesman, categorically confuted the article published by the daily paper "Republika," entitled "Albania, 25 000 soldiers ready," under the headline "Defence Minister presents the force."

    According to the spokesman, Albert Mullai, the article published on Saturday in "Republika" paper is completely untrue and groundless. Such articles aim at misinforming the readers. They do not only serve the national interests, but they also create confusion in the Albanian public opinion. The authors of such articles should respond before law for the consequences their articles cause.

    The Defence Ministry stressed that it will fulfill the duties assigned. It has taken all the measures and will always operate to defend the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the country.

    In the end of his explanation, the spokesman stresses that the Defence Ministry is completely open to inform through its press office anyone who interested in being informed about its activity. /dast/mt/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [21] Public order - main problem for Albanian society

    TIRANA, Jan. 23 (ATA) - By E. Nepravishta: The public order remain one of the main problems of the Albanian society today. Its restoration is closely related to the disarmament of population.

    According to the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), in October of 1997, a study has been carried out in which 960 people in 1000 thought that the most urgent problem for the Albanian society was the restoration of tranquility and stabilization of public order.

    Meanwhile, despite the efforts made in this direction, the public order has still many problems. Its stabilization is very difficult at a time when the Albanian population is armed.

    With regard to the armaments lost in March of 1997, based on the statistics, made public by the Defence Ministry, some 287 army depots were completely destroyed and 1011 others were partially damaged. Meanwhile, some 656 000 arms of various kinds, together with some 1.5 billion ammunition, 3.5 million hand grenades and 1 million land mines, were looted from these depots during this period. The damage was estimated to be about 800 million dollars.

    According to the specialists, it is difficult to exactly know the quantity of armaments which is actually in the hands of the civil population. The number of arms returned is 97 000, including mines and munition. The largest quantity has been found in rural zones and suburbs of the cities.

    Thus, according to the calculations carried out by the Ministry of Public Order, an efficacious project for the disarmament of the Albanian population would cost more than 10 million dollars. /dast/mt/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [22] Moments of tension among owners of speedboats and Vlore police

    VLORE, Jan. 23 (ATA) - By H. Koci: On Sunday, by 8:30, in the town of Vlore tension was noticed on the owners of some speedboats, who reacted towards the measures that the police department of the prefecture had taken on Friday evening by blocking 6 speedboats, which were sent to the island of Sazan.

    The director of the Vlore police department, Sokol Kociu, went immediately to the spot, who removed some of the police forces, whose concentration was relatively high.

    The governor of the Vlore prefecture, Tare Hamo, told ATA that further on, Kociu, accepted to talk with the representatives of the speed- boats in the island of Sazan, where, according to Hamo were explained the procedures envisaged by the law approved by Parliament a week ago regarding to the use and administration of speedboats and dinghies. The governor of Vlore has considered the act of Kociu "very clever and optimal, which has probably avoided any posible incident with unforeseen consequences."

    Governor Hamo also said that the speedboats, which were blocked on Friday, were given to the owners to precede with them according to the law. /dast/mt/

    Albanian Telegraphic Agency

    [23] Government to help improvement of situation in Berat

    BERAT, Jan. 23 (ATA) - By I. Manka: Albania Prime Minister Pandeli Majko took part Saturday in the meeting of the leading committee of the Socialist Party, branch of Berat.

    Sources from the meeting reported to ATA that PM Majko has expressed his concern about the situation Berat is going through and promised the support of the government he heads for the improvement of the situation.

    Majko stressed the continuation of economic policies to overcome the crisis for the restoration of order and tranquility and the resolution that the new elections will be held in the time defined by the law, said the same sources. /dast/mt/

    From the Albanian Telegraphic Agency (ATA) Home Page at

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