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News 01 May 13

OSCE Urges End to Albania Poll Row

The OSCE has called for the power struggle between Albanian political parties to control the Central Electoral Commission to be resolved before the June 23 parlimentary elections.

Besar Likmeta
BIRN
Tirana

“There is a need for dialogue between political parties to resolve the row over the Central Electoral Commission [CEC],” the OSCE Ambassador in Tirana Eugen Wolfarth told reporters on Tuesday.

“Although the CEC can currently function, it would be better for it to be complete with all its seven members,” he added.

The CEC is a seven-member body tasked with overseeing elections in Albania. Although its members are proposed by political parties under a formula that grants the ruling coalition the right to propose four of the seven members, it is considered an independent institution.

Three commissioners proposed by the opposition resigned earlier this month after one of their colleagues was sacked and replaced by a controversial vote in parliament.

The CEC is currently operating with only four commissioners.

The opposition has called for negotiations to remodel the CEC, proposing a formula that would see three members nominated by the majority, three by the opposition and the head of the commission selected through consensus.

However, the call for talks has been rejected by Prime Minister Sali Berisha.  

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