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Albania News

Albanian ex-dictator's grandson jailed for smuggling cocaine

Tirana - An Albanian court has sentenced the grandson of former communist dictator Enver Hoxha to ten years in jail for smuggling cocaine, a statement said on Wednesday.

Edi Rama: 'Artist' premier keen to lead Albania into Europe

Tirana - Albania's artist-turned-prime minister Edi Rama, who was heading for a second term on Monday, wants to transform his country from a poor Balkan state into a modern member of the European Union.

Albania's Socialist PM heading for second term

Tirana - Socialist Prime Minister Edi Rama was on his way to securing a second term in power Monday, offering him the chance to lead the Balkan country into European Union accession talks.

Albania votes with EU accession talks in mind

Tirana - Albania votes in a parliamentary election on Sunday with Socialist Prime Minister Edi Rama hoping to boost his grip on power and lead the Balkan country into talks on European Union accession.

The bitter rivals contesting Albania's election

Tirana - Political players contesting Albania's legislative election on Sunday harbour long-held animosities that border on hatred.

Albania hopes for peaceful elections on path to Europe

Tirana - Albania votes in parliamentary elections on Sunday with hopes that a long tradition of polling fraud, violence and disputed results will come to an end and propel the country towards EU membership.

Albania grapples with cannabis, a hurdle to EU accession

Tirana - As Albania gears up for elections, one huge challenge facing the Balkan country has been low on the campaign agendas: the scourge of its cannabis fields, which threatens to hinder EU accession.

Albanian MPs elect new president

Tirana - Albania's parliament on Friday elected speaker Ilir Meta as the Balkan country's new president, a largely ceremonial post for which he was supported by the governing Socialist party.

Albania opposition blocks roads in call for PM to quit

Tirana - Albania's political opposition blocked the country's main roads for more than an hour on Monday to demand the resignation of Prime Minister Edi Rama, three months before a general election.

Albanian opposition slams PM, threatens poll delay

Tirana - Albania's opposition stepped up pressure Monday on Prime Minister Edi Rama, calling for him to resign and agree to a transitional government to prepare free and fair elections.

Opening secret police files, Albania seeks to drain the swamp

Tirana - Forty years ago, Irina Sallaku's husband Xhavit disappeared and she has spent decades wondering what happened to him.

Trump gets his own boulevard in Albania

Kamz - A town in central Albania has renamed a boulevard in honour of Donald Trump, calling the US president "a revolutionary model" for the world.

Albanian opposition leader charged over anti-regime protests

Tirana - Albania's opposition leader was charged by police on Saturday for inciting public violence after leading sweeping anti-government protests.

Albanian opposition party vows to block parliament

Tirana - Albania's main opposition party said Thursday that it would boycott parliament in its efforts to oust Socialist Prime Minister Edi Rama ahead of elections in June.

Albania smashes major migrant smuggling ring

Tirana - Albanian police dismantled the biggest human trafficking ring uncovered since the start of the migrant crisis, arresting 18 people in a series of stings, public prosecutors said Wednesday.

French police arrest hoteliers in migrant smuggling probe

Lille - Five hotel managers suspected of belonging to a network smuggling Albanian migrants into Britain were arrested Tuesday in a police operation in the French port city of Calais, a judicial source said.

Young Albanians scarred by rogue cosmetic treatments

Tirana - Emira Sela covers her face with her hand to hide a disfiguring abscess, the traumatic result of unregulated cosmetic treatments now rampant across Albania.The 31-year-old began to worry when wrinkles appeared on her face.

Albanian town makes Trump honorary citizen

Tirana - An Albanian town has made Donald Trump an honorary citizen, hailing the US president-elect as "revolutionary" following his victory at the polls.

Macedonian police say Islamist attacks foiled

Skopje - Macedonian police said Thursday that Islamist terror attacks had been foiled in the Balkan country as they announced the arrest of two citizens in a wider regional crackdown.

Albanian Communist era martyrs beatified

Shkod - Thousands of people gathered on Saturday to celebrate the beatification of 38 Catholics executed or tortured to death in Albania under the regime of communist dictator Enver Hoxha.

Albanian martyrs of Communist era to be beatified

Shkodra - They were tortured to death, fatally strung up by their feet, shot or thrown into quicksand.

Albanian martyrs of Communist era to be beatified

Shkodra - They were tortured to death, strung up by their feet, shot or thrown into quicksand.

Kosovo 'is a state' Albanian PM Rama tells Serbs

Belgrade - Serbia should recognise its former southern province Kosovo, which "is a state," Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama said Thursday during a visit to Belgrade.

Albania destroys marijuana fields to clean up its image

- Small mountainous Albania was for decades Europe's most isolated country, but now 26 years after toppling communism it has emerged with the unwanted distinction of being the continent's top marijuana producer.

Albanian prince marries in country's second ever 'royal' wedding

Tirana - Prince Leka, the sole descendant of Albania's last king, married popular actress Elia Zaharia on Saturday in a ceremony attended by the Spanish queen and several former royals.

Albania seeks to liberate chained bears

Tirana - The two five-year-old Albanian bears carry physical and mental scars from their days of mistreatment and captivity -- Pashuk has marks from the tight chain on his neck, while Tomi is an alcoholic.

Balkan countries contest Saint Teresa's heritage

Skopje - When Pope Francis canonises Mother Teresa on Sunday, two Balkan countries will be celebrating the sainthood of a woman they both fiercely claim as their own.

The last bastion of 'sworn virgins': Albania

Shkodra - At the age of 16, living in a remote village in northern Albania, Shkurta Hasanpapaj faced being forced into marriage. There was just one way out, and the young woman grasped it: she took the ancient, gender-bending oath to become a "sworn virgin".

Uproar as Albania to dam Europe's 'wildest river'

- "This river will bury the living and the dead," sighed Enver Vasilaj, 93, standing by the Vjosa, one of Europe’s last wild waterways, which runs uninterrupted from its source in northwest Greece to the Adriatic Sea.

Living in fear: Children trapped by Albania's vendetta

Shkodra - They lead a life clouded by misery, often robbed of the opportunity of going to school -- and the fear of being killed is a daily reality.These are the children living under the shadow of the so-called Gjakmarrja vendetta.
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The Skenderbeu monument and Albanian flag in Albania
The Skenderbeu monument and Albanian flag in Albania
charlesfred
The George Bush Statue in Fushe Kruje  Albania
The George Bush Statue in Fushe Kruje, Albania
Albanian tourism combines stone heritage with a stunning coast
Albanian tourism combines stone heritage with a stunning coast
Jimmy Lama
Children in Tirana  Albania fearing blood feuds.
Children in Tirana, Albania fearing blood feuds.
Finding Dulcinea
Royal Albanian Army c.1930 demonstrate Zogist salute
Royal Albanian Army c.1930 demonstrate Zogist salute
Wikimedia Commons - Unknown author
King Zog s grave at the Thiais cemetery  near Paris  France
King Zog's grave at the Thiais cemetery, near Paris, France
Wikimedia Commons - Martin Ottmann
The southern coast of Albania is the most beautiful in Europe
The southern coast of Albania is the most beautiful in Europe
Jimmy Lama
Albania s coast is one of the most beautiful in Europe
Albania's coast is one of the most beautiful in Europe
Jimmy Lama on the Tivat ferry in Montenegro
Jimmy Lama on the Tivat ferry in Montenegro