Sunday, February 06, 2011

The Albanian stalemate and Western guilt

After the 2009 elections the socialist opposition claimed that the government had committed election fraud in some places and they demanded a recount. The Berisha government consistently refused this. Since then the opposition has boycotted the parliament.

On 21 januari 2001 three demonstrators were killed by the Republican Guard during protests. Berisha blocked prosecution of the perpetrators.

During all the unrest the Western reaction has been to ignore the problem and to encourage the Socialists to resign to their fraudulent defeat. All this under the pretext of being "neutral". In my opinion the West is making a major error in doing this.

Albania's socialists are no saints and there were accusations of election fraud against them too after the 2002 elections. However, after the 2005 elections they voluntarily gave up power - something Berisha never has done. Having bought into the Western concept of voluntary power change they expected the West to defend it when they were in the opposition. Instead they were betrayed.

There is little sign that Berisha is prepared to give up power - ever. The West should finally accept this and turn up the pressure on Berisha. Without Western pressure the situation may well get worse and worse.

No comments: