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Albania: US warns of demonstrations ahead of June 25 elections

The US State Department warns that political demonstrations are likely in the run-up to the June 25 national elections

09 juin 07h16 UTC
TIMEFRAME expected from 8/6/2017, 12h00 until 25/6/2017, 11h59 (Europe/Tirane). COUNTRY/REGION Albania

Event

The United States Department of State has advised its citizens throughout Albania to remain vigilant in the run-up to national elections being held on June 25. The embassy is not aware of any specific threats but large gatherings and other political events are likely in the coming weeks and may escalate to violence without warning and/or result in localized traffic disruptions.

Context

On May 18, Albania’s ruling Socialist Party (led by Prime Minister Edi Rama) and opposition Democrats (led by Lulzim Basha) announced a series of agreements to be implemented before the scheduled national elections, which were pushed back from the original June 18 date to June 25. The opposition party was temporarily given more representation in the government and, more importantly, will run the Central Electoral Commission. Party leaders also emphasized that the government would crack down on “buying and selling votes.” The deal ended a three-month opposition boycott - which included major protests - that threatened the legitimacy of the scheduled elections over what opposition members perceived as corruption within the government and the electoral system.

Advice

Individuals present in Albania are advised to avoid all protests and to monitor the sociopolitical climate.