Athens asks Ti­rana to act re­spon­si­bly

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Greece yes­ter­day ac­cused Al­ba­nia of re­sort­ing to “un­ac­cept­able” gen­er­al­iza­tions that do not cor­re­spond to re­al­ity after Ti­rana urged Athens to crack down on what it called “ex­trem­ist seg­ments” that were al­legedly tar­get­ing eth­nic Al­ba­ni­ans in the coun­try.

Al­ba­nia’s Min­istry of For­eign Af­fairs had con­demned the killing of four eth­nic Al­ba­ni­ans in Greece in the last two weeks and called on Athens “to de­nounce and put a brake on any ef­forts by Golden Dawn or other ex­trem­ist seg­ments to vi­o­late Al­ba­ni­ans’ se­cu­rity and dig­nity.”

One of the vic­tims was killed by an al­leged Golden Dawn Greek sup­porter, while an­other, a drug traf­ficker, was shot dead by Greek po­lice as he tried to cross the bor­der il­le­gally. A third re­port­edly died in prison. The lat­est in­ci­dent was the killing of an 18year-old Al­ba­nian na­tional in the north­ern Greek city of Kavala. Greek po­lice said, how­ever, that a Greek-Al­ba­nian teenager con­fessed to ac­ci­den­tally shoot­ing the vic­tim.

The Greek For­eign Min­istry dis­missed the ac­cu­sa­tions, say­ing that “the com­pe­tent au­thor­i­ties im­me­di­ately dealt with the sit­u­a­tions re­ferred to by Al­ba­nia’s Min­istry of For­eign Af­fairs, which were in­ves­ti­gated and have al­ready been solved, as is men­tioned in a rel­e­vant state­ment by the Hel­lenic Po­lice.”

“The gen­er­al­iza­tions at­tempted by Al­ba­nia’s Min­istry of For­eign Af­fairs, con­nect­ing var­i­ous crim­i­nal cases and at­tribut­ing these to an un­de­clared ‘cam­paign of ha­tred and vi­o­lence’ do not cor­re­spond with re­al­ity and are un­ac­cept­able,” said Greek For­eign Min­istry spokesman Alexan­dros Yen­ni­matas.

Given that the fi­nal re­port on the fa­tal shoot­ing of Greek cit­i­zen Kon­stanti­nos Kat­si­fas by Al­ba­nian po­lice in Oc­to­ber is re­mains pend­ing, Yen­ni­matas urged Al­ba­nia’s For­eign Min­istry “to demon­strate re­spon­si­bil­ity as well as the com­po­sure and self-re­straint dic­tated by the cir­cum­stances.”

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