Prime Minister Edi Rama gave an interview to the Greek media ERT, in which he spoke again about the case of Himara and the arrest of Fredi Beleri.
Asked if the extension of the detention period for Beleri was carried out in order to prevent the latter from being sworn in as mayor, Rama stated that he and the majority do not interfere in any way with justice and its processes.
Rama added that his former deputy, Arben Ahmetaj, as well as 5 mayors of the Socialist Party who are in custody are proof of the will of justice.
So, he also answered about the fate of the local government of Himara, saying that the authorities are studying the case, since when the 90-day period ends, normally according to what is stated in the law, the government must dismiss the elected president who is not presented to take the oath and must appoint a guardian until new elections.
Excerpt from the interview:
-Talking again about the Beleri case. From the first moment he was arrested, you and your government refer to the independence of the judiciary and this is interpreted as a desire for the duration of Mr. Beleri’s detention so that he misses the date to be sworn in, thus losing his post . It seems as if you are determined to have this thorn in the bilateral relations, even this with the risk of losing Athens’ support towards the European path.
Rama: First, from the moment when SPAK, our special Prosecutor’s Office for the fight against corruption and organized crime enters into a process officially, always me, my government, the party I lead, that is, the parliamentary majority of Albania does the same thing, exactly the same thing, as we have done in this case. We only refer to sovereign justice to do justice and we do not interfere in any form and through any way, either publicly or not publicly, in its work. Because this is a historical moment for Albania. And today this justice is not in the first act with the master that official Athens is concerned about, but this is one of the links in the chain created of these acts of hitting the problems with which it deals with people very close to power.
Today my former deputy is in search. There are 4 or 5 mayors of the Socialist Party who are in custody, awaiting trial for the same reason: The will of this justice to strike without looking at what color it is, who it is close to or who it is hurting from the point of view political or from a financial point of view.
– In these conditions we are in, apparently Mr. Beleri will lose, he cannot take the oath and he will miss the date of the oath. In the interview with Kathimerini, you hinted that there may not be new elections in Himara, so how will it go? Will it be Goro again? All this is a little confusing, Mr. Prime Minister. How will Himara be governed tomorrow?
Rama: First of all, if I am not mistaken and I do not believe that I am mistaken, Mr. Goro belongs to the same group or not?
– The minority.
Rama: Yes, so this is one more reason to shrug because Mr. Goro, who has represented the party that I lead as mayor, as well as two other mayors, who are in office today and today enjoy the right to exercise their duties as representatives of the Greek minority; one with the support of the SP although not of the SP, the other of the SP, show that here there is no clash between Albanians and Greeks. Here there is a completely reasonable and completely normal coexistence. How many thousands and thousands of ownership titles has he given to minority families for houses built without permission, as many other Albanian families have done, or ownership titles for cult objects. Today, the minority churches have property titles because from the time of communism until this government took office, they lived without these ownership titles.
Threats to obstruct the further path to full integration of Albania and its full membership in the EU, while the government has no legal possibility to enter this process, to give permission for a detainee to go to take the oath or to swear in the office with a notary, as they say, is in complete inconsistency, either with the sovereign right of Albania to exercise and apply its own European legislation in the perimeter of the Republic of Albania, or even with European coexistence between countries that are democratic countries, that belong to the same family of values and where one country cannot tell the other how it should work in a specific case and what one or the other should do in a specific case to enforce the law in their own country.
In the meantime, as I said, we are studying the case, because when the 90-day period ends, normally according to what the law says, the government must dismiss the president-elect who has not appeared to take the oath and must appoint a guardian until new elections. However, this is a very specific case and for this reason I have asked the legal department here at the Prime Minister to give an opinion on what we should do and we will again apply what is the most right. I would be relieved if we could let the court process to end and at the end of the process we would know from justice, not from Greece, whether this man is guilty or innocent.
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