- Title: Albania disappointed by EUâ€™s failure to open accession talks
- Date: 18th October 2019
- Summary: TIRANA, ALBANIA (OCTOBER 18, 2019) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF EXTERIORS OF TIRANA TOWN HALL WITH FLAGS OF ALBANIA AND EU MEMBER STATES ON WALL ALBANIAN PRIME MINISTER EDI RAMA GIVING NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (Albanian) ALBANIAN PRIME MINISTER, EDI RAMA, SAYING: "I have continuously asked the French president, the Dutch Prime Minister, and also yesterday the Danish Prime Minister, if they had an office in their countries that dealt with Albania all week without a break, that knew things about Albania that followed processes in Albania non-stop and verified results in Albania like the huge European Union office that is here? They don't (have an office like this). Therefore, how it that this commission that is paid for by you (EU member states), not Albania, and which is very thorough with verifying things, reports that it doesn't know everything (that you know)." MEDIA DURING NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (Albanian) ALBANIAN PRIME MINISTER, EDI RAMA, SAYING: "You tell a country (North Macedonia) 'change your name! Change your name!' And in return you promise to open accession talks. But you are not giving them membership." VARIOUS OF ROADS IN TIRANA PEOPLE WALKING ALONG STREET (SOUNDBITE) (Albanian) 60-YEARS-OLD, ILIR (NO LAST NAME GIVEN), SAYING: "Definitely, my personal opinion is that Europe has failed us, especially France and the Netherlands." PEOPLE WALKING (SOUNDBITE) (Albanian) RESIDENT, LORIN BEKTESHI, SAYING: "I don't think that we as citizens or our country deserved this, because I feel like a European citizen, as all of us do, so I believe that the most sensible thing to do is for negotiations to be opened." VARIOUS OF VIEWS OF TIRANA
- Embargoed: 1st November 2019 18:19
- Keywords: Albania Tirana EU EU accession talks Balkans Edi Rama
- Location: TIRANA, ALBANIA
- City: TIRANA, ALBANIA
- Country: Albania
- Topics: Diplomacy/Foreign Policy,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA001B1MLIRD
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Albania's Prime Minister Edi Rama voiced his disappointment on Friday (October 18) that the European Union summit failed to reach consensus to let Albania and North Macedonia start talks on joining the EU.
While most agreed that the two Western Balkans countries have done enough to justify the opening of what are known as accession talks, France refused to approve it for North Macedonia and led a group of three who blocked it for Albania.
Speaking to media in Tirana, Rama said that the countries opposing their membership countries had no special offices that monitor the country and instead rely on the EU to do so.
Rama also said that North Macedonia had been let down as promises to start accession talks after changing their name had not materialised.
Residents on the streets of Tirana also expressed their disappointment, saying that Europe, especially France and the Netherlands, had failed them.
North Macedonia, Albania and four other Balkan countries - Bosnia, Kosovo, Montenegro and Serbia - are trying to join the bloc following the ethnic wars of the 1990s that led to the disintegration of Yugoslavia.
(Production: Florian Goga, Bardh Krasniqi, Louisa Naks)
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