Opening of accession negotiations does not hinge on political climate

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TIRANA, April 6 /ATA/- Political climate is not a condition for opening of EU accession negotiations, everything hinges on fulfillment of five conditions set by the EC.

This is what ambassador of Great Britain in Tirana, Duncan Norman, said on Friday in Shkodra, in his remarks at a round table organized by British embassy, entitled: Opportunities for Prevention of Juvenile Crime and Criminal Activities among Youths.”

“The EC decision on the opening of accession negotiations with Albania will depend on its scores in fulfillment of 5 priorities instead of domestic political climate. The final decision will be taken in June during the EU Council and political disagreement is not a hindrance to accession process as long as it is not one of the criteria,” the British ambassador said.

According to him, Albania and Great Britain are working in the light of operations for seizure of assets obtained through illegal activities.

“We work very closely with the Ministry of Interior and Minister Xhafaj and only last month I had the pleasure to travel with Mr. Xhafaj to Britain, London. Collaboration between our two governments covers a wide range of issues, including organized crime. One of the things we are now discussing now is how to address the issue of asset seizure together. It is very clear that one of the effective ways to fight or crack down on criminals is to hit them where it hurts, in their finances. We are in discussions with the Minister to explore the ways for cooperation,” the ambassador of Great Britain Duncan Norman said./a.f//r.e/sm/