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Latest News from Albania

albania-s-army-bids-farewell-to-the-kalashnikov
17 Jul 14

Albania Army Bids Farewell to Kalashnikovs

Minister of Defence Mimi Kodheli on Wednesday announced that the army is to replace the Kalashnikov AK-47 with the NATO-standard M4 carbine assault rifle.

albania-mp-calls-for-probe-on-ex-pms-oligarchs
17 Jul 14

Probe Sought into Albanian Ex-PM's Cronies

Socialist MP Erjon Brace has asked the tax authorities to launch a probe on the heels of a BIRN investigation - which revealed how the inner circle around former Prime Minister Sali Berisha earned millions of euro from suspect land deals.

albania-to-partner-with-private-sector-for-new-highways
16 Jul 14

Albania Offers Unfinished Highways to Private Sector

Faced with growing public debt, the government plans to offer concessions to private companies to construct new highways and maintain those already finished.  

albania-govt-ignores-promises-to-ex-political-prisoners
14 Jul 14

Albania Govt Dodges Promise to Ex-Political Prisoners

Proposed amendments to the law on compensation for ex-political prisoners do not fulfill promises of swift reparations made by the Socialist Party during the last election campaign.

albanian-mp-s-criminal-past-revealed
14 Jul 14

Albanian MP’s Criminal Past Revealed

Documents published by the opposition Democratic Party showed that ruling Socialist Party MP Arben Ndoka served time in prison for running prostitutes and kidnapping.

un-body-calls-on-albania-to-halt-roma-eviction
11 Jul 14

UN Urges Albania to Halt Roma Eviction

The UN Human Rights Committee has told Albania to suspend eviction of four Roma families from their homes in Elbasan, to make space for the reconstruction of a football stadium.

albania-private-universities-eye-public-money
09 Jul 14

Albania Private Universities in Line For Public Cash

Prime Minister Edi Rama has endorsed the findings of an independent commission on the reform of higher-education, which recommend public funding for private universities.

greek-crisis-undermined-neighbors-eu-bids
04 Jul 14

Greek Crisis ‘Undermined Balkan EU Accession Hopes’

Athens’ sovereign debt crisis not only hit Greece but also damaged its Balkan neighbours’ EU accession hopes, said a report by the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy.

albania-illegally-axed-headmasters-report-says
03 Jul 14

Albania Illegally Axed Headmasters, Report Says

An assessment report obtained by BIRN has condemned as illegal a campaign to replace headmasters in the Tirana school district by forcing them to resign.

albania-holds-suspects-for-bank-ceo-murder
02 Jul 14

Albania Holds Suspects for Bank CEO Murder

Police have detained two brothers on suspicion of involvement in the murder of the CEO of Albania’s Credins Bank, Artan Santo.

albanian-judiciary-prone-to-political-interference-report-says
30 Jun 14

Albanian Judiciary 'Prone to Political Interference'

A Council of Europe report said that the justice system in Albania lacks the public’s trust and remains prone to political influence.

albanian-banker-murdered-in-mafia-style-hit
26 Jun 14

Albanian Banker Murdered in Mafia-Style Hit

The CEO of Albania’s Credins Bank, Artan Santo, was gunned down on Thursday morning as he entered his office in downtown Tirana.

albania-gets-eu-candidate-status
24 Jun 14

Albania Wins EU Candidate Status

The European Union has granted Albania candidate status for membership, but said the country still needs to implement more reforms and tackle organised crime and corruption.

albania-police-seize-43-tons-of-marijuana
23 Jun 14

Albania Police Seize Drug Village's Marijuana Crops

Police have seized more than 43 tons of marijuana and destroyed over 130,000 plants after taking control of the outlaw village of Lazarat, known as Albania’s cannabis capital.

drug-raid-to-boost-albania-s-eu-bid
20 Jun 14

Drug Raid Likely to Boost Albania’s EU Bid

The crackdown against marijuana growers in the outlaw village of Lazarat is likely to boost Albania’s bid for candidate status at the upcoming meeting of the EU Council of Ministers.

Premium

albania-phone-register-fuels-eavesdropping-row
23 Jul 14

Albania Phone Register Fuels Eavesdropping Row

Opposition MPs and activists have slated a government decision to force cell phone users to register the IMEI codes as a backdoor to eavesdropping on online communications.

Business

corruption-hinders-balkans-sustainable-energy-future
25 Jun 14

Corruption Hinders Balkans Energy Sector Progress

Rampant corruption has raised costs, wasted opportunities for sustainable energy and distorted the market, says a new report by a group for environmental NGOs.

Culture and Lifestyle

europe-and-the-region-divided-over-conchita-wurst
13 May 14

Drag Queen's Eurovision Win Highlights East-West Divide

While LGBT communities and public in Serbia and Croatia criticised the reporting of their national broadcasters on the May 10 victory of transsexual singer Conchita Wurst at the Eurovision, this year’s voting has highlighted differing attitudes towards LGBT people in Western and Eastern Europe.