Transcript of Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield’s Interview with TV Klan’s Blendi Fevziu

Blendi Fevziu: Ambassador Greenfield, welcome to Albania, and thank you for being here tonight.   Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield: Thank you for inviting me.   Blendi Fevziu: Ambassador Hoxha, thank you very much for being here tonight.   Ambassador Hoxha: Thank you very much. I’m home.   Blendi Fevziu: How was your trip to Albania?   Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield: So far, so good. …

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Transcript of U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield’s Interview with Voice of America

VOA: Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield, thank you for this opportunity. The world today is going through turbulent times, in which the Security Council is on the front line. However, you found time to come to Albania. What is the purpose of this visit, and what did you discuss with the Albanian authorities? Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield: Well, first, let …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim at the 30th Anniversary of the Albanian Constitutional Court

Good morning, everybody. Mr. President, Speaker Nikolla, Chief Justice, members of the diplomatic corps, and guests, It is a wonderful day today to be able to be with you to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the founding of the Constitutional Court. Today, we mark an important milestone in Albania’s democratic evolution. The Constitutional Court is …

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Remarks by Ambassador Kim at the 100th Anniversary of U.S.-Albanian Relations Commemoration Event with the Albanian-American Development Foundation

President Begaj, Chairman Granoff, Martin and Sandri, distinguished guests, There is a saying that is found in just about every country in the world: “You reap what you sow.” More than one hundred years ago, as World War I came to an end, a seed was planted in the rubble of war – it was …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim at the 25th Anniversary of the Albanian School of Magistrates

Good morning everybody. Honorable President Begaj, Minister Manja, Director Rakipi, distinguished colleagues from the diplomatic corps, dear guests, and of course, dear graduates, It is great to be here with you this morning. Dr Martin Luther King Jr. said that “true peace is not merely the absence of tension – it is the presence of …

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Transcript of Interview of U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim with Blendi Fevziu, Opinion, Klan TV 

Blendi Fevziu: Good evening honored viewers. I speak to you from the studio of Opinion program, as every Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday at 22:00 and every Thursday at 21:00. Today’s show will be divided into several parts, but in the first part, that is, starting now, the guest is American Ambassador to Tirana, Yuri Kim. …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Smart Cities Conference Opening Session*

I am very upset this morning! I will tell you why. I am very upset because I am looking through this agenda and I am realizing that there are some amazing people who are here for this conference and there are some amazing sessions planned, and I genuinely wished that I had cleared my schedule …

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Statement by NSC Spokesperson Adrienne Watson on Iran’s Cyberattack against Albania

The United States strongly condemns Iran’s cyberattack against our NATO Ally, Albania. We  join in Prime Minister Rama’s call for Iran to be held accountable for this unprecedented cyber incident. The United States will take further action to hold Iran accountable for actions that threaten the security of a U.S. ally and set a troubling precedent for cyberspace. For weeks, the U.S. government has been on the …

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Ukraine’s Six Months of Resistance, Resilience, and Resolve by Ambassador Yuri Kim

Ukraine, a country under attack by Russia since 2014, has now withstood half a year of massive bombings, sieges of cities, and atrocities against its people.  Ukraine is fighting to defend not only its democracy, but its very survival as an independent country. August 24th marks the 31st anniversary of Ukraine’s independence.  Sadly, the day …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Kim at the 100th Anniversary Ceremony of the Day when the United States and Albania Established Diplomatic Relations

President Begaj, Prime Minister Rama, Minister Xhacka, former Presidents, former Foreign Ministers, dear friends: One century ago today – a few years after President Woodrow Wilson declared at the Paris Conference that Albania ought to be an independent and sovereign nation – the American Commissioner in Albania, Maxwell Blake, had the honor of conveying to …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at Graduation Ceremony with Sixth Generation Investigative Journalism Lab Participants

Good morning, everyone. Congratulations on your accomplishments in the Journalism Lab program. President Biden said recently on World Press Freedom Day “The free press is not the enemy of the people. Quite the opposite, when driven by a quest to illuminate and educate, not inflame, or entertain, the free press is the guardian of truth.” I …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Independence Day Ceremony

Mr. President, thank you very much for your kind remarks on behalf of the Albanian people. Madame Speaker, excellencies, and honored guests, friends – it is my very special privilege to welcome you to this historic gathering to celebrate the 246th Independence Day of the United States, and 100 years of friendship between the U.S. …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the 4th Security Forces Assistance Brigade Activation Ceremony

*Minister Peleshi, Brigadier General Kingji, Brigadier General Schaertl, As we mark 100 years of relations, we are finding a truly historic way to bring our military relationship to new heights. For decades, Albanian and U.S. troops have trained, fought, and lived shoulder to shoulder throughout the world. But today, we mark an important step in …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Durres Fortress Restoration Project Unveiling

Minister Margariti, Ambassador Hastad, Elena and the Cultural Heritage without Borders team, construction engineers and workers, community members, honored guests, good evening. On the way to Durres earlier this afternoon I was thinking about my first visit to this ancient city shortly upon my arrival in Albania as U.S. Ambassador. I wanted to meet with …

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Remarks by Charge D’Affaires Demian Smith at the Tirana International Conference of Justice Inspection Services

Mirëmëngjes. Kryetare e Kuvendit Nikolla, Inspektor i Lartë i Drejtësisë Metani, dhe të ftuar të nderuar nga Shqipëria dhe nga e gjithë Evropa. Është një nder të jem këtu për të folur në këtë aktivitet të rëndësishëm me kaq shumë pjesëmarrës të dalluar. Six years ago, Albania enacted the constitutional and legal amendments that established a …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States Embassy congratulates Bajram Begaj on his election as the next President of Albania. As Chief of Defense, he contributed significantly to defense cooperation between the United States and Albania. We look forward to continuing to work with him in his new role and further strengthening the partnership between our countries.

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All Eyes on Ukraine: Our Promise on Russian Accountability by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim

Ukraine is miles away, but as members of the United Nations Security Council the United States and Albania have a particular responsibility to address what is happening there.  Russian President Vladimir Putin’s unprovoked and unjust war on Ukraine has unleashed horrific violence and caused immense death and destruction.  The world has witnessed the horrors of …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Ceremony Commemorating the 100th Anniversary of the Harry Fultz Institute

Ministers Kushi and Ibrahimaj, Mayor Veliaj, Chairman Leka, Director Kapedani, Ms. Baxhaku, dear guests.  Good evening. One hundred years ago – in the same year that the United States and Albania formally established diplomatic relations – Harry Fultz became the head of the Albanian Vocational School that had been founded the previous year by the …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim at the “Balkan Freedom Forum: Human Trafficking Current Trends in the Balkans”

Mirëmëngjes! Mister President, Madame President, Ambassador Richmond, It is wonderful to be here with you today to discuss this very important topic. I think just the presence alone of two heads of state tells you that this is an important issue that brings all of us together. And I must also say John, Ambassador Richmond, …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim at the U.S.-Albania 100-Year Anniversary Conference

Mirëmëngjes! Great to be here this morning! Let me also say what a special honor and privilege it is for me to be able to begin the celebration of a 100 years of U.S.-Albania relations in the presence of Secretary Pompeo. Secretary Pompeo, now also Doctor Pompeo, was the man who nominated me to the …

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Transcript of Interview of U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim with  Eni Vasili, Open, News 24 TV 

Eni Vasili: Good evening, welcome, honored viewers to Open, welcome to News 24. She arrived in Tirana as the Ambassador of the United States in January 2020. She is a career diplomat who worked in key spots of foreign policy in Europe, Asia, and the Middle east. Here with me is the Ambassador of the …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim at the “Justice in Challenging Times” Conference

Thank you Chairwoman Llagami, Minister Manja, other distinguished colleagues. I’m still thinking about the comments that came before mine (those of Justice Minister Manja). I have been in Albania for over two years and I think you know by now that I’m clear to the point of being blunt and a little bit undiplomatic. So, …

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Transcript of Interview of U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Europe and Eurasia Karen Donfried with Voice of America

Voice of America: First of all, I would like to thank you for this opportunity. Ms. Donfried, in the press release announcing your tour in the region, it was explained that in Albania, among other things, you would emphasize the need to fully implement justice reform and combat corruption. What specifically did you ask from …

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Treasury Targets Actors for Destabilizing Behavior Throughout the Western Balkans

U.S. Department of the Treasury Office of Public Affairs Press Release:  April 11, 2022 Contact: Treasury Public Affairs, Press@treasury.gov Treasury Targets Actors for Destabilizing Behavior Throughout the Western Balkans WASHINGTON — Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated seven individuals and one entity across four countries in the Western Balkans …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim at the “Promoting School as a Community Center” Conference

Good morning, everybody! Minister Kushi, Mr. Hroni, Ms. Dervishi, thank you very much for enabling me to be here with you, the students, all of you who are participating in this wonderful program called “Schools as Community Centers.” This is one of our favorite programs, because it is a way to reach out directly to …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Task Group Balkans Activation Ceremony

Good afternoon, everybody! What a brilliant day to be together, among friends and allies. Minister Peleshi, Chief of Defense, General Begaj, General Tabor, General Hou and other distinguished friends and allies – it is a great, great honor to be able to stand before you today, to stand with you today on this historic occasion, …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim Women in Military Forum

*Minister Peleshi, Deputy Minister Bici, Chief of Defense Major General Begaj, Deputy Chief of Defense Brigadier General Shehu and Adjutant General of the New Jersey National Guard Brigadier General Hou.  I cannot think of a better occasion to celebrate women’s military leadership – and leadership in general – on the eve of International Women’s Day. …

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Our Strength is our Unity: Putin Chose War. We Remain United with Ukraine by DAS Gabriel Escobar

The world has changed because of Russia’s war on Ukraine, and the outpouring of support for Ukraine over the last few days has been remarkable.  We join the international call on all countries, and particularly those in Europe, to uphold international law and unequivocally reject Russia’s illegal invasion of their neighbor in Ukraine.  The countries …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Interfaith Council’s Forum on “Brotherhood in Humanism”

Thank you, General Secretary Kruja. Dear members of the Interfaith Council and distinguished guests. I am honored to be here with you today as the Albanian Interfaith Council recognizes our shared “Brotherhood in Humanism.”  I am especially honored to be here as we launch the 100th year of U.S.-Albania relations this year.  I will take …

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Transcript of Interview of U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim with Erla Mëhilli, NOW, Euronews Albania

Erla Mëhilli: Good evening, welcome to Now. Welcome to Euronews Albania. Tonight, at Now, I have the pleasure to have U.S. Ambassador to Albania, Ms. Yuri Kim. Ms. Kim, good evening, welcome to Now. It is a pleasure that you accepted my invitation and I feel honored that you chose Euronews Albania and my show, …

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Transcript of Interview of DAS Gabriel Escobar, VOA – Albania

VOA:  Mr. Escobar, events turned violent last weekend in Albania at the main headquarters of the main opposition site of the Democratic Party.  What are your thoughts about what transpired that day and in general in the Democratic Party? DAS Escobar:  I think it’s deplorable that anybody would resort to violence and not the ballot …

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30 Year Anniversary of Ambassador Ryerson’s Arrival

by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim Thirty years ago today, William Ryerson presented his credentials as the first U.S. Ambassador to a newly democratic Albania.  Having broken the shackles of communism and dictatorship, the Albanian people extended their hand – in friendship and in freedom – to the American people.  The United States grasped that hand …

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Ambassador Kim Remarks at NBI Investigators Certification Ceremony / Two-Year SPO Anniversary  Tirana International Hotel, December 20, 2021 

Ambassador Kim Remarks at  NBI Investigators Certification Ceremony / Two-Year SPO Anniversary  Tirana International Hotel, December 20, 2021    Thank you! Chief Special Prosecutor Kraja and Director Hajnaj, thank you so much for inviting me to this very important event, which is both a celebration, as well as a reaffirmation of the important mission of …

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Transcript of Interview of DAS Gabriel Escobar with Sokol Balla, Real Story, News 24 TV

Sokol Balla: Hello! I speak to you from the U.S. Embassy where I’m in the company of Mr. Gabriel Escobar, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs at the end of his first visit in this capacity in Tirana. Mr. Escobar, thank you for being with us tonight. DAS Escobar: Thank you …

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Transcript of Interview Of U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim with Journalist Anila Hoxha, Top Channel

Top Channel: Madam Ambassador, in this 30th anniversary of the re-establishment of Albania-U.S. relations, are you happy with their level? Ambassador Yuri Kim: I’m very happy with the level of U.S.-Albania relations. I think the great thing about U.S.-Albania relations is that there is tremendous potential and as you know, we have been working very …

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Statement by Ambassador Yuri Kim

Ambassador Yuri Kim: I had a very good meeting this morning with Mr. Nano. I came here first to congratulate him and to wish him success on his new job. I reconfirmed that for us, the strong cooperation between the United States and Albania in law enforcement matters remains important. We will continue to provide …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Breast Cancer Awareness Walk

Speaker Nikolla, Minister Manastirliu, Deputy Mayor Ruseti, Ms. McCluney, Ms. Kozma, Director Godaj, distinguished guests, courageous breast cancer survivors, and friends, it’s wonderful to be with you today! I was able to participate in the march last year in Elbasan and it is great to do it again this year here in Tirana. And I …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Institute for Women in National and International Security Policy II

*Deputy Minister Bici, OSCE representative Nebiu, distinguished guests, students, and faculty, I am delighted to join you today for the Institute for Women in National and International Security Policy.  I am especially proud that Dr. Edlira Titini was inspired to create this institute after she participated in a U.S. sponsored program on policy making, and …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the 30-Year Anniversary Reception

Speaker Nikolla, Minister Xhacka, Ministers, fellow Ambassadors, and all of our distinguished guests, young and old, what a wonderful evening this is and what a great pleasure it is to be together! It is an honor to welcome you on this very special occasion, as we commemorate 30 years of renewed diplomatic relations between the …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Israel-Albania Culture Festival

Përshëndetje, shalom. It’s very wonderful to be here, and I want to thank the Israel-Albania Culture Festival for including me in tonight’s activities. It’s a wonderful way to think about history, culture and art. I’m hoping that tonight as people watch Yael Katzir’s film “The Albanian Code”, it will remind them of the best of …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires Demian Smith: 9/11 commemoration ceremony

September 10, 2021 Faleminderit të gjithëve që erdhët në ceremoninë e sotme. Dua t’iu uroj mirëseardhjen Ministrit të Mbrojtjes Peleshi, Zëvendësministres për Evropën dhe Punët e Jashtme Fino dhe shefit të shtabit Gjeneral Majorit Begaj. Faleminderit që jeni me ne në këtë ditë të rëndësishme. Friends, colleagues, Minister Peleshi, Deputy Minister Fino, and Major General …

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US Embassy Statement

The difficult decision announced yesterday by Chairman Lulzim Basha deserves respect. This decision demonstrates that – as was the case 30 years ago and at other critical moments in Albania’s history – the Democratic Party has the courage to break from the past in order to build the future, to help lead Albania forward. The …

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Remarks by DCM Demian Smith at the Event Commemorating NBI Investigator Candidates Completing FBI Training

Ju faleminderit të gjithëve. Unë jam Demian Smith, zëvendës ambasador i SHBA dhe kam ardhur në Shqipëri një javë më parë. Në fakt, kjo është veprimtaria ime e parë zyrtare jashtë Ambasade. Nuk mund të mendoj për një aktivitet të parë zyrtar më të mirë sesa të jem këtu me ju.  Ju sjell përshëndetjet dhe …

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Statement by Ambassador Yuri Kim

I had a very good and full discussion with DP Chairman Lulzim Basha today. I was following up on the discussion that he had when Acting Assistant Secretary Philip Reeker was in Tirana. We talked about the strength of the U.S. – Albania relationship, the very important role that the Democratic Party has played in …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

We take note of ODIHR’s Final Report on the April 25 parliamentary elections, which builds on the preliminary report of April 26. We urge all relevant institutions to review the final report and its recommendations to further improve Albania’s elections.

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the “5 Years of Justice Reform: Finalization of the New Cross-Cutting Justice Strategy” Event

Thank you Minister Gjonaj, Ambassador Soreca, distinguished colleagues, it is great to see all of you! It is a very important moment that we come together. Five years ago, Albania enacted the constitutional and legal amendments which established the framework for comprehensive justice reform. Polling at the time showed that 93% of Albanian citizens supported …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim During Equipment Donation Event at Kakavija Border

Good morning! It’s very nice to see everybody, it’s a great pleasure to be here! And personally, I have to say I am very happy and proud to see these three flags behind me! I used to be the Director of the Office that is responsible for the Eastern-Mediterranean countries, including Greece, and before that, …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Roundtable Discussion with Albania’s Prosecution Institutions

*Dear Minister Gjonaj, Dear Chairman Ibrahimi, Prosecutor Çela, and Chief Kraja Distinguished guests, Thank you for the invitation to join this important round table today. It is good to see leaders of Albania’s prosecution institutions convened, together with the Minister of Justice, to discuss the joint efforts in the fight against crime, including but not …

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Remarks by Acting Deputy Chief of Mission Sunil Ravi at the “America the Beautiful” Concert

Good evening and welcome, friends. I am delighted to be here to celebrate the 245th anniversary of the Independence of the United States of America and the 30th anniversary of the re-establishment of diplomatic relations between the United States and Albania. This performance of American music by Albanian musicians is a truly wonderful way to …

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Visit of Acting Assistant Secretary of State Philip T. Reeker to Tirana

Acting Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Ambassador Philip T. Reeker visited Tirana today. During the visit he met with Prime Minister Rama, Democratic Party Chair Lulzim Basha, several fully-vetted members of Albania’s justice system, and other leaders. In all meetings, Acting Assistant Secretary Reeker emphasized the importance of U.S.-Albanian relations over …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the “Presentation Event of the AHC Monitoring Report of the HJC and HPC”

*Good Morning Ms. Llagami, Mr. Ibrahimi, Mr. Metani, Mr. Cela, Mr. Kraja, Ms. Skendaj, Dear Guest, Thank you for the invitation to join you at this important event today. Justice Reform and its implementation has been, and continues to be, one of the most important developments for Albania’s EU accession and for a more prosperous …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Graduation Ceremony for the Investigative Journalism Lab 5

Good morning. Thank you all for coming to the Embassy today and for allowing me to celebrate this occasion with you. There is no doubt that this has been a challenging time due to the pandemic, but I am honored and glad that we are able to gather together here today in the culmination of …

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Remarks by Ambassador Kim at the OSCE Conference on Joint Efforts to Combat Trafficking in Human Beings in Albania

Good morning, Ambassador del Monaco, Ambassador Ekstedt, Ambassador Soreca, Deputy Minister Kuko, distinguished guests. It is a pleasure to be here. As you know, President Biden and Secretary Blinken have made clear that corruption, human rights abuses, and other destabilizing crimes constitute threats to U.S. national security. They have directed all U.S. Government agencies to …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Ceremony for the Donation of COVID Equipment to Mother Theresa Hospital

It is a great pleasure to be here and it’s really an honor to for me to be with you. As a temporary resident of Albania, I want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart for everything that all of you have done, every medic, every nurse, everyone who was cleaning the …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Event on Guaranteeing Effective Justice at the High Court

Honorable Chair and judges of the High Court, distinguished representatives of Albanian justice institutions, partners, dear guests. It is my pleasure to attend this event. I appreciate the invitation and the opportunity. In 2016, the U.S. Government supported the constitutional and legal amendments which established a framework for Albania’s comprehensive justice reform. I am proud …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Tirana Open Day of Defender 2021 Military Exercise

President Meta, Prime Minister Rama, Ministers and Generals, Mr. Basha, men and women in uniform, dear friends,   What a beautiful day to showcase our militaries and Exercise Defender Europe 2021, which is the largest U.S.-led military exercise ever seen in the Western Balkans!   This is landmark moment for U.S.-Albanian cooperation in defense. It …

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Statement by Secretary Antony J. Blinken

Today, I am announcing the public designation of Sali Berisha, a former President of Albania, former Prime Minister of Albania, and former Member of Parliament of Albania, due to his involvement in significant corruption.  In his official capacity as Prime Minister of Albania in particular, Berisha was involved in corrupt acts, such as misappropriation of public funds …

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Transcript of Interview of U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim with Blendi Fevziu, Opinion show, TV Klan 

Blendi Fevziu: Ambassador Kim, welcome to the studio of “Opinion,” welcome again. Ambassador Kim: Thank you so much, great to be back. Blendi Fevziu: How are you? You have been very busy in these days, I think? Ambassador Kim: I think everybody has been busy in Albania, but I’m ok, thank you very much. Blendi Fevziu: And everybody …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Event in Honor of International Nurses Day

Good evening, Today, on International Nurses Day, we honor the sacrifices of those who work tirelessly to care for their patients. This year, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are especially gratefully to every nurse and healthcare professional. You have been on the front lines of the fight against the pandemic, fighting valiantly …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Justice Day Ceremony

Honorable Chair Ibrahimi, Distinguished representatives of Albanian justice institutions, EU colleagues, It is an honor to be part of the Justice Day commemoration with all of you, here at the Pole of Justice. I am happy to observe that all the institutions borne or reconstituted in implementation of the justice reform are now functioning in …

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Press Statement by Ambassador Yuri Kim

Let me underline the thanks that Ambassador Soreca has expressed for commissioner Celibashi and the rest of his team following this final briefing before the election. I think we are all looking forward to a peaceful, orderly electoral process where the right of Albanian citizens to express their will through their vote is guaranteed. There is a …

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U.S Embassy Statement

We have seen the reports of violence in Elbasan today resulting in the death of one individual and injury to others. We call on law enforcement officials to investigate this incident quickly and thoroughly, identify perpetrators, and prosecute them to the full extent of the law. Those who engage in such violence must be punished. …

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Transcript of Round Table Discussion of Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Matthew Palmer with Albanian Reporters

DAS Palmer: Thank you very much and thank you for joining me. It’s been a real pleasure for me to engage in even a virtual visit to Tirana, which is, let’s face it, a pale shadow of the real thing, and the food isn’t nearly as good. But it really is a joy to get …

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Virtual Visit of Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Matthew Palmer to Albania

During a “virtual visit” to Albania April 6, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Matthew Palmer met with President Meta, PM Rama, and DP Chair Basha to reaffirm the importance of U.S.-Albanian relations as we celebrate the 30th anniversary of the re-establishment of diplomatic relations. They reconfirmed our shared commitment to expanding bilateral cooperation on democracy, …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the “Albanian – American Relations – Past, Present and Future” Conference

Dear Minister Xhacka, Mr. Rakipi, Dr. Biberaj, and Distinguished guests: I am proud to be here today as the U.S. Ambassador to Albania, celebrating together with our Albanian colleagues, this historic occasion: the 30th anniversary of the reestablishment of U.S.-Albanian diplomatic relations. Anniversaries like this are an opportunity to think about how far we’ve come, …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

Albania’s electoral campaign season officially began yesterday, leading to national elections on April 25.  The United States welcomes the official start of the campaign season and, together with local authorities and international parties, will make all efforts to support the elections through to their successful conclusion. We call on all parties, leaders, and voters to …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the HMMWV Equipment Donation Ceremony for the Albanian Armed Forces

Good morning Minster Peleshi, General Begaj and distinguished guests. I would like to particularly thank our host, General Kingji, for welcoming me to Zall Herr – the home of the Albanian Land Forces. Today is not just an opportunity to conduct a ceremony, but an opportunity to meet Albania’s new land force commander. General, I …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the 30th Anniversary of the Reestablishment of Diplomatic Ties Ceremony

Olta, Minister Xhaçka, Secretary General Skapi, Director Dibra, and dear friends. Thank you so much for hosting this event. We mark today a very important moment, the 30th anniversary of the reestablishment of ties between the United States and Albania. For 50 years we were kept apart. During those 50 years, though, we maintained our …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the MOU Signing between Albania, Exxon Mobil and Excelerate Energy

It is an honor to be a part of today’s MOU signing, the culmination of vision and hard work by a number of people around the globe. I want to congratulate ExxonMobil, Excelerate Energy, and Minister Balluku and her entire team bringing to fruition a strategic and fruitful dream that we have been working together …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at Tirana Women’s Salon

Good morning! Thank you for inviting me to be part of this special event. I feel honored to be a part of this format that carries such a vital message: women are 50% of humanity, and we have important contributions to make in addressing economic, political, and human security challenges that affect us all. The …

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Remarks by Acting Deputy Chief of Mission and Public Affairs Officer Brian Beckmann at the National CVE Help Line Event

Deputy Minister Kuko, Director Dervishi, Mr. Hupin, Mr. Veenkamp, Ms. Luarasi, Dear Guests, Good Morning. Thank you for the invitation to be part of this event today. I am so glad to see several partners gathered here in support of our shared fight against violent extremism, because this is exactly that, a shared effort. Our …

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Remarks by Ambassador Kim at the EXBS Donation of Equipment to Albanian Border and Migration Police

Director General Veliu, Director Merkaj, thank you for this opportunity to share some thoughts on this important occasion. I have said this before and I’ll say it again: democracy, defense, and business are the United States’ top priorities here.  On defense and matters of security, the U.S. Government’s staunch commitment to strengthening law enforcement in …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Pyramid Works Inspection

Prime Minister Rama, Mayor Veliaj, Albanian-American Development Foundation (AADF) CEOs, Mr. Mata and Mr. Sarapuli, friends: “History” is a curious thing. We often talk about “the course of history,” as if events have a life and will of their own, and people are carried along in its course. On the other hand, we also talk …

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Transcript of Interview of U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim for “Real Story” of Sokol Balla, News 24 TV

Sokol Balla: Good evening and welcome to Real Story. One year ago, the new U.S. Ambassador to Albania, Ms. Yuri Kim, presented her credentials to the president’s office, which were of course accepted. The year 2020 has certainly been an important year, an important one for Albania but also for the United States itself. On this …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Leadership Academy for Women Members of Parliament

Thank you very much for inviting me to this event! I would like to say good afternoon to Deputy Speaker Hysi, to Ms. Gjebrea, Ms. Gjermeni, Ms. Kovacevic, Ms. Cepani. It is wonderful to see everyone!  Welcome and congratulations to what has to be one of the most amazing groups of women anywhere in the …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

Today, Ambassador Kim and EU Ambassador Soreca met with the members of the Constitutional Court to thank them for answering the call of duty, which has enabled the Court to meet the quorum for functionality. She underlined the requirement for judges to act with independence and integrity to deliver justice, irrespective of which institution had …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

With 100 days until Albania’s national election on April 25, Ambassador Kim met with Central Election Commission Chairman Celibashi and Deputy Chairwoman Pelinku to express support for the CEC’s critical role in ensuring free and fair elections.  She underscored the need to implement in a timely and effective manner biometric identification and other necessary measures.  …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the USAID’s U.S.- Albania Transparency Academy

Thank you, Assistant Administrator Bierman, for the insightful reflection on the Transparency Academy, on USAID’s legacy in Albania, and the broader development challenges that lie ahead.  USAID can be proud of the significant contribution it has made to Albania’s development over the last 30 years.  We may be transitioning the nature of USAID’s presence in …

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Remarks by Ambassador Kim at the Ceremony for the Donation of Flood Equipment to Albania’s Directorate of Civil Emergencies

Minster Peleshi, General Begaj and distinguished guests. I would like to thank our host, General Sallaku, for welcoming me to support command. I know you have been busy in recent days responding to the flooding.  Let me begin by expressing our sympathy for those who are suffering due to the flood, and our thanks to …

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Transcript of Interview with Special Representative for the Western Balkans and Deputy Assistant Secretary Matthew Palmer

for Albanian National Broadcaster RTSH   Lutfi Dervishi: Thank you for this interview. DAS Palmer: Thank you for having me on the show. It is an honor to be here. Dervishi: Mr. Palmer, the United States, paraphrasing a saying of Mr. Reagan, President Reagan, has been seen by democratic countries and by those who aspire …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Extradition Treaty Signing Ceremony

Honorable Minister Gjonaj Distinguished guests It is a great honor to sign this Extradition Treaty between the government of the United States and the government of Albania, which is the latest testament to the ever-growing partnership between our nations. This treaty modernizes and supersedes the one between the United States of America and the Kingdom …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The death of Klodian Rasha is a tragedy, and we extend our deepest condolences to his family and friends.  Ambassador Kim spoke today with Prime Minister Rama, Police Director Veliu, Democratic Party Chairman Basha, and LSI Chairwoman Kryemadhi to discuss the rights of citizens and the responsibilities of leaders.  She underlined that those in power have …

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Transcript of Interview with U.S. Ambassador to Albania Yuri Kim

with VOA Albanian Service   VOA: Ambassador Kim, thank you for this interview. Through almost one year of your presence in Albania, the focus of your public statements has been justice reform. Recently, you have spoken often about the Constitutional Court, insisting on the need to make it functional within this month. How realistic is …

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Press Statement by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Albania National Day

As Albania celebrates its National Day, I extend congratulations on behalf of the United States Government and the American people. This year, we also celebrate the European Union’s decision to open accession negotiations for Albania, a sign of the significant progress that Albania has made in implementing the reforms necessary for EU membership.  We commend …

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U.S. Embassy Statement on the Anniversary of the Earthquake that struck Albania in 2019

November 26 marks one year since an earthquake struck Albania. The United States stands in solidarity with the Albanian people as you mark this solemn anniversary. Throughout the past year, Albania has shown tremendous resilience, not only rebuilding, but in coping with a global pandemic. The United States has been with you every step of …

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Remarks by Ambassador Kim at the OSCE Workshop on “Addressing Organized Crime and Corruption through the Re-Use of Confiscated Criminal Assets”

Good Morning, Ambassador del Monaco, Ambassador Soreca, Deputy Minister of Interior Lamallari, distinguished speakers and guests. I am pleased to be with you today as you take on an important aspect of combatting organized crime: asset recovery, and – more specifically – how to make effective use of seized assets to advance rule of law, …

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Remarks by Ambassador Kim at the Closing Event of the “Social Reuse of the Organized Crime Seized Assets” Project

*Good Morning Ms. Hoxha, Ambassador Soreca, Mr. Kala, Mr. Patacconi, representatives of the civil society organizations. I am happy to be part of this conference today, which highlights the impact of civil society organizations working effectively and with fearless advocacy. This initiative aimed at the sustainable reuse of seized assets from organized crime groups by …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim for the 245th Birthday of the U.S. Marine Corps

One of the highlights of being at an Embassy is getting to celebrate the birthday of the U.S. Marine Corps.  It’s not just because it’s fun to see everyone get dressed up in their finest, or because the Marine Ball is always the best party in town – it’s because it’s an opportunity to honor …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at American Bank of Investments 5th Anniversary

Thank you all for having me this evening.  It is a pleasure to join Minister Denaj, Governor Sejko, Andi Ballta, and the other distinguished guests today in celebrating the fifth anniversary of the American Bank of Investments. Many of you have already heard this before, including at the AmCham General Assembly last week: increasing trade …

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Transcript of Interview with A/S of State for Education and Cultural Affairs Marie Royce with Thimi Samarxhi of Vizion+

Vizion+: Madam, thank you very much for being here. I appreciate it and it’s an honor having you here. A/S Royce: Thank you, Thimi. Vizion+: Given that this is probably your first visit to Albania, what is your first impression? A/S Royce: The first thing I want to say is how appreciative I am of …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the American Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting

*as prepared for delivery I want to thank Ilir, Enio, Minister Denaj and, indeed, all of the AmCham members who are joining us online today, for the opportunity to participate and share some thoughts with you today.  I have to say, this is not how I imagined I would first address the full membership of …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the High Level Conference “Strengthening Integrity and Fighting Corruption: Latest Achievements”

*as prepared for delivery  Thank you Minister Gjonaj. I also want to extend my thanks to Prime Minister Rama, and of course, Ambassador Soreca for gathering today to highlight successes in Albania’s justice sector. I think it is a very positive sign that Albania continues to discuss a topic that is core to the future …

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Transcript of Interview with Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment Keith Krach with Angelo Haruni for A2

A2/CNN: The United States and Albania signed two very important Memoranda of Understanding, in the field of Economic Cooperation and the construction of the Skavica Hydro-Power Plant. Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment Keith Krach was in Albania to sign this agreement after a tour of meetings with different leaders throughout Europe. …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States has long pressed for Albania’s leaders – inside and outside Parliament – to engage each other in a transparent and inclusive manner on issues of national importance.  This kind of positive engagement produced the June 5 agreement on electoral reform.  We have made clear since then that the June 5 agreement should …

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Remarks by Under Secretary of State for Energy, Economic Growth, and Environment Keith Krach, at the Office of the Prime Minister of Albania

It’s an honor to be here in Albania and to have an opportunity to meet you. Mr. Prime Minister, you’re quite a leader and I’m so excited to open up this next chapter and take our partnership to the next level. I don’t think there’s any other place I’d rather be than right here, right …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy strongly supports the ASP and SPAK’s independent and professional work.  Justice sector professionals – police, prosecutors, and judges – must be allowed to conduct their work free from threats and intimidation, no matter who the defendant is.  It is time to allow them to carry out their duties and support their efforts …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

We congratulate Albania on the appointment of Aida Hajnaj as the first Director of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI). This marks a major milestone in the implementation of Justice Reform. Justice Reform will not be easy, quick or perfect, but it is necessary, making progress, and must continue. Today’s decisions shows that despite obstacles, …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

On July 23, Parliament adopted legislation to codify the June 5 agreement on electoral reform, which was achieved in a transparent and inclusive manner through the Political Council. Today, Parliament adopted amendments to the Constitution that will enable additional measures for electoral reform. While this action was within the competence of Parliament, it is regrettable …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Presentation of the Roadmap to High Court Functionality Event

Thank you very much! I am very glad that we found a way to do this meeting together even though COVID-19 is preventing us from meeting in person. It is a very challenging time and so your willingness and ability to adapt is more important than ever. This is a difficult time for everyone. There …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

Over the last few weeks, Ambassador Kim has had multiple discussions regarding electoral reform with President Meta, Prime Minister Rama, Democratic Party Chairman Basha, members of the Political Council on Electoral Reform, as well as a range of experts and others.  She has emphasized three points: First, the June 5 agreement, which was achieved through …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States welcomes Parliament’s enactment of electoral reform legislation that codifies the June 5 agreement of the Political Council on Electoral Reform. This action honors the agreement made by all parties and moves Albania another step toward the European Union. We applaud all parties for ensuring that the June 5 agreement has been achieved, …

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Transcript of Interview with U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim by Sokol Balla

Sokol Balla: Albania is a strange country even when it comes to its history. We practically do not have the Declaration of Independence. We’ve lost it. We don’t have the Independence Day flag, either. It’s been stolen. And we do not have the building where independence was declared either because it has been destroyed. There …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Holocaust Memorial Dedication Ceremony

Good Morning Prime Minister Rama, Mayor Veliaj, Ambassador Gendler, and distinguished guests. It is an honor to dedicate this memorial in honor of the people of Albania who risked their lives to protect the Jews of Europe. After Hitler’s rise to power, Albanian families sheltered hundreds of Jewish people from around Europe, saving them from …

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Remarks by Ambassador Kim During the Award Ceremony for RSO Janet Meyer and ARSO-I Antonio Zamudio

Good Afternoon, Minister Lleshaj, General Director Veliu, ladies and gentlemen. Thank you for inviting me to participate in this awards ceremony for two of our Embassy colleagues. The United States continues to enjoy a close relationship with the Government of Albania, especially the Ministry of Interior and the Albanian State Police.  I want to recognize …

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“Venice Commission: An Opportunity to Move Forward” by Ambassador Yuri Kim

This week, I had a chance to visit Kruja, the fortress of Albania’s hero, Skanderbeg.  Facing attack after attack by the most formidable military force in the world at that time, Skanderbeg did not surrender.  Instead, he united the country, refused to give up, and in the end prevailed against all odds. Four years ago, …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the AFCP Signing Ceremony

Minister Margariti, honored guests, good morning and thank you for joining us. Today, we mark the start of the U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation Project to restore cultural sites damaged by the November 26th earthquake in Krujë, Durrës, and Prezë. Since its creation in 2001, the Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation has provided financial …

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Transcript of Interview of U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim with Blendi Salaj of A2/CNN

A2/CNN: Dear viewers, welcome. This is our interview with U.S. Ambassador to Albania, Ms. Yuri Kim. Madam Ambassador, it’s an honor to have you in the studio and let me welcome you to A2. Ambassador Kim: Thank you very much. It’s a pleasure to be here. A2/CNN: It’s a pleasure for me as well. Let’s …

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Apply Now for the Investigative Journalism Lab

Are you a student who wants to help combat corruption? Apply to be a part of the investigative journalism lab! Selected students who demonstrate passion and courage for independent, investigative journalism will participate in a mentoring program and write investigative stories on important issues in Albania.  Cutting-edge equipment and journalism training will be provided by …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

We welcome the cross-party agreement on electoral reform in Albania, which strengthens the guarantee for free and fair elections and moves Albania forward on its European path. This agreement is the result of long hours, spirited discussions, and difficult decisions by Political Council members Oerd Bylykbashi, Damian Gjiknuri, Rudina Hajdari, and Petrit Vasili. All parties …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Signing Ceremony for the UH-60 Blackhawk Helicopters

* Minister Xhaçka, General Kollçaku, and Distinguished Guests, First, I would like to thank our host Lieutenant Colonel Dulemata for welcoming me to Farka Air Base, the future home of the Blackhawks. I hope this will be the first of many visits to Albanian military facilities as we continue to expand and deepen our defense …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States remains firmly committed to Justice Reform, which is the demand of the Albanian people. In response to this demand, in 2016, Parliament unanimously adopted the foundational laws for reform. Since then, key institutions have been erected and implementation is underway to make them fully functional. Reform is painful, slow, and imperfect, but …

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Transcript of U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim’s Interview with Ilva Tare on Euronews

Ilva Tare: Kam të ftuar sot ambasadoren e Shteteve të Bashkuara në Tiranë, Yuri Kim. Madam Ambassador, thank you very much for being at Euronews Albania, in what makes me very happy to be your first interview at Euronews Albania, in this country. One month after your arrival to Albania, the country went into quarantine mode because of coronavirus. How was the experience of working under such restrictions?    Ambassador Kim: First of …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at ATS-G Signing

Good afternoon, Minister Lleshaj, and thank you for hosting this important signing at the Interior Ministry. We gather this afternoon to mark the implementation of Albania’s Passenger Name Record law, as well as the deepening of U.S.-Albanian law enforcement and counterterrorism cooperation. Terrorism is a threat to everyone, everywhere, and only through close coordination can …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

COVID-19 requires everyone in Albania – no matter who you are – to be united in spirit and in action. As President Meta, Prime Minister Rama, and Democratic Party Chairman Basha have all agreed, this is a time for calm, sensible action by the public and swift, responsible action by all leaders. In this respect, …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

We urge all sides to respect the Venice Commission process, including the requirement for confidentiality of the draft opinion until it is finalized. We welcome the decision of the Government to take no further action on relevant legislation until the opinion is finalized. We also welcome the statement made by President Meta during his press …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the “Challenges of the General Prosecution Office in Light of the Justice Reform” Conference

Faleminderit shumë! It’s a great pleasure to be here today! Thank you Mr. Çela for inviting us all to join you for this event. I appreciated your comments very much! And Luigi, thank you also for your comments! Once again, I find myself in agreement. And I have to say, first of all, Luigi is …

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Statement by Ambassador Yuri Kim

I met today with PM Edi Rama, President Ilir Meta, and DP Chair Lulzim Basha to discuss recent developments and U.S. expectations. With specific reference to the donors’ conference in Brussels, we believe it reflects the solidarity, support, and desire of the international community to help the Albanian people with reconstruction efforts after the earthquake. …

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Remarks by DAS Matthew Palmer at the Albania Earthquake Donors’ Conference

*Good afternoon everyone.  It is an honor to be here today representing the United States as we jointly show our support for Albania, though I wish it were under happier circumstances.  I want to thank President von der Leyen and the European Commission for coordinating this Donors’ Conference.  This event has galvanized international support, and …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

As it stands today, the circumstances in regard to the Duty Free space at Tirana International Airport show the challenges foreign investors face in Albania.  It is disappointing that the current business climate hinders increased foreign investment.  Albania must apply a set of fair, transparent rules equally to all businesses.  We hope the Government of …

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Remarks by Assistant Secretary Steven Winberg

“Small-Scale Liquefied Natural Gas Deployment in Central and Eastern Europe” Workshop Good morning. On behalf of the U.S. Department of Energy, it’s an honor to be here in Tirana today to discuss the role that LNG can play in diversifying Albania’s energy mix and strengthening Albanian energy security. Before I begin, I’d like to thank Minister …

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Remarks by U.S. Ambassador Yuri Kim

“Small-Scale Liquefied Natural Gas Deployment in Central and Eastern Europe” Workshop Honorable Minster Balluku, Assistant Secretary Winberg, honorable guests from Albania and Kosovo, it is a great pleasure for me to be here to launch today’s event discussing the potential of liquefied natural gas for Albania and the region. Last year, in front of the U.S. …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim at the Graduation Ceremony for the Service for the Polygraph Course

Minister Lleshaj, Ambassador Soreca, Director Rrumbullaku, Police Director Veliu, graduates; thank you for sharing with me this important milestone in the progress of judicial reform in Albania. I am so pleased to be here today to mark the success of these five dedicated students who applied themselves diligently to complete 400 hours of challenging theoretical …

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U.S. Embassy Statement on Anti-KÇK Legislation

As important justice reform implementation continues, the United States welcomes intensified efforts by the Government of Albania to prevent organized crime from using illicit wealth to undermine the foundations of rule of law. Enhanced law enforcement mechanisms should both bolster new independent justice institutions charged with prosecuting organized crime and harmonize with standards of due …

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Remarks by Ambassador Yuri Kim At Her Welcome Reception

President Meta, Speaker Ruci, Esteemed Ministers, Members of Parliament, Distinguished Guests,  Thank you all for joining me tonight.  I have been overwhelmed by the warm welcome I have received in Albania.  I can see that the legend of Albania’s hospitality is simply a statement of fact! Before departing Washington for Tirana, I took the opportunity …

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Ambassador Yuri Kim’s Remarks After the Credential Ceremony

Good afternoon. This morning, I presented my credentials to President Meta as the new U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Albania.  The President and I had a good conversation about the longstanding friendship between our two nations, and we reconfirmed our shared commitment to strengthen relations between our two nations. I am honored that President …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

We applaud the parties for agreeing to work together on electoral reform, an important step toward addressing ODIHR recommendations thoroughly. Reform will bolster effective, credible electoral processes and strengthen Albanian democracy. We hope the parties will continue moving forward in the current spirit of cooperation to ensure Albanian elections are free from fraud, interference, and corruption.

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States congratulates the eight prosecutors sworn in this morning as the first members of the Special Prosecution Office, marking a major milestone in the establishment of the Special Anti-Corruption and Organized Crime Structure (SPAK). Starting today, Albania has a body of prosecutors committed to identifying, investigating, and bringing to justice corrupt current and …

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Remarks by Public Affairs Officer Brian Beckmann at the “Whistleblowing Corruption in Albania” Project

Good morning, Ambassador Guusje Korthals Altes, Ms. Skendaj, Mr. Dervishi, Mr. Karaj, Dear guests. First of all, I want to congratulate the Albanian Helsinki Committee for its work to implement this important anti-corruption initiative. We all know that corruption is a disease that harms society, the economy, and the daily lives of citizens.  The cure …

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U.S. Government Support for Earthquake Recovery Efforts

The United States sends its deepest condolences to all the families and communities affected by the November 26th earthquake in Albania.  As Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Leyla Moses-Ones said during a visit to the affected region, “This tragedy has touched our hearts profoundly.  Please know that you have a friend and a supportive ally in the …

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Statement by Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo on Albania National Day

As Albania solemnly commemorates its Independence Day, we offer our deepest condolences for those who lost their lives in this week’s earthquake. Today, our prayers are with their families, as well as those injured. On behalf of the American people, we wish all of those affected a speedy recovery. Now, as in other difficult times, …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

On this solemn commemoration of Albania’s Independence Day, the U.S. Embassy expresses heartfelt sympathy for the devastation and loss of life caused by the November 26 earthquake. The United States stands staunchly by our friend and ally, Albania. We will continue to support ongoing humanitarian relief efforts and are prepared to assist in other areas …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States sends its deepest condolences to all the families and communities affected by today’s earthquake. The United States stands with our friends in Albania, just as Americans and Albanians have always stood by each other during difficult times. We will continue to closely monitor the situation and stand ready to offer our support.

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Leyla Moses-Ones at the 20th anniversary of Vatra Center

Distinguished participants and guests, It is a pleasure to be here to celebrate Vatra organization’s 20th anniversary this evening, and also to receive this amazing distinction on behalf of the United States Embassy! Thank you so much! And thank you to my incredible team of professionals who have worked, some for 20 years, alongside Vatra! …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

Judicial reform is among the United States’ highest priorities in Albania. On-going progress on reforms is essential for advancing our shared goal of Albania’s membership in the European Union. Albania is now on the cusp of reestablishing its constitutional court, a major step in the judicial reform process. This necessary progress is stalled, however, due …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Leyla Moses-Ones at the Albanian Disability Rights Foundation Event

Honorable Minister Denaj and Deputy Minister Kospiri, honorable guests: I am delighted to be here today to celebrate the achievements of ADRF’s nine-year-long, “Economic Empowerment of People with Disabilities” project – EEPD. The United States Government, through USAID, supported the EEPD project because America is committed to helping Albania strengthen its rule of law and …

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Remarks by USAID Country Director Mikaela Meredith at the Gender Equality Regional Forum

Your Excellency President Meta, Speaker Ruci, honorable guests: I feel privileged to be here this morning to address you.  I am here because both Americans and Albanians share the belief that, regardless of gender, all people are equally articulate, brave, creative, and intelligent, and because both nations share the view that, regardless of gender, all …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Dan Koski at Tirana University Law School Graduation

*Good evening Speaker Ruci, Minister Gjonaj, Minister Shahini, distinguished guests and graduates. I am honored to be with you tonight.  On behalf of the United States Government, I congratulate all of today’s graduates. There is an American graduation tradition I’m sure you know very well.  In my hand I’m holding a tassel.  Tassels like this …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

Since justice reform passed unanimously in 2016, Albanian institutions, including new independent judicial bodies, have been working hard to fulfill the will of the people. Parliament’s vote today brings Albania forward in re-establishing the Constitutional Court, a vital judiciary body for democratic checks and balances. The United States remains committed to supporting the formation of …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, i.e. Leyla Moses-Ones at the Engaging Youth for Building Resilience in Communities Project

Good Morning Deputy Minister Kuko, Chairman Spahiu, religious leaders, distinguished guests.  It is my honor to be here with you today. Allow me to begin by expressing my enthusiasm for the inauguration of the AIC’s community building program.  Together we launched this project in 2015 to thwart extremist groups and protect Albania’s democracy.  Because of …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires Dan Koski at the Regional Conference against Trafficking in Human Beings

Good morning Minister Lleshaj, Minister Manastirliu, Deputy Minister Voda, colleagues, ladies and gentlemen.  I am honored to speak to all of you who are devoted to the great cause of ending human trafficking. It goes without saying that human traffickers are clever.  They adapt.  They try to stay one step ahead of justice.  But even …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Moses-Ones at the U.S. Policy in the Western Balkans Conference

Dear Prime Minister Rama, Ambassador Shannon, Ambassador Soreca, and Ambassador Zuzul, Mr. Serwer and Professor Dr. Angjeli, it is truly an honor to take part in this conference. I am sitting next to a giant of U.S. diplomacy and it is a big honor for me today to be sitting next to my former Under …

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Interview of DAS for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Mr. Jorgan Andrews

VOA: Mr. Andrews, thank you for this opportunity. What is the purpose of your visit? DAS Andrews: Thank you very much. It is great to be with you today. I am representing a bureau of the U.S. Department of State – the Bureau of International Law Enforcement and Narcotics Affairs. We’re responsible for implementing civilian …

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Remarks by Acting Deputy Chief of Mission Daniel Koski at the National Advocacy Day

Good Morning. I am delighted to see so many people here today who have embraced the spirit of volunteerism, activism, and civic responsibility.  I am also glad to see so many organizations represented at the second annual National Advocacy Day. Strengthening Albania’s democracy is one of the U.S. government’s highest priorities in Albania. The U.S. …

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Remarks by Deputy Public Affairs Officer Lucija Straley at the “Debating Economics” Program Launch

Good morning Mrs. Gjini, Chairman Granoff, Junior Achievement Albania Director Bala, rectors, and students. It is a pleasure to be here today to launch the National Debating Economics Program, supported by the U.S. Embassy through our Democracy Commission.  The Debating Economics program aims to help build an active and informed public by educating students in …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Leyla Moses-Ones at the AADF 10 Year Anniversary Celebration

* Chairman of the Trustees Mr Granoff, Trustees of the Albanian-American Development Foundation, and Honorable Guests: On behalf of the United States Mission to Albania and the U.S. Government, I am privileged to attend this celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the Albanian-American Development Foundation.  Happy anniversary! Of course tonight we are applauding the great …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States welcomes the decision of the opposition parties to send representatives to the electoral reform conference being coordinated by the Parliament and OSCE Presence in Albania.   We commend Democratic Party Chairman Lulzim Basha for convening the opposition yesterday.  His efforts demonstrate real leadership on an issue essential to the further strengthening of Albania’s …

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Remarks by Deputy Chief of Mission Koski at USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project Event

Distinguished Deputy Prime Minister Brace, members of cabinet, members of Parliament, dear mayors, dear deputy ministers, members of the donor community, and distinguished guests. Allow me to take a moment to express the United States’ solidarity with the Albanian people in the wake of last weekend’s earthquake.  It has been an unsettling past several days, …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

Yesterday’s verdict against former Minister of Interior Saimir Tahiri demonstrates the growing independence of the judiciary and the beginning of the end of impunity for the well-connected. While Mr. Tahiri’s conviction on abuse of office charges signals an important step forward, the sentencing is discouraging given the seriousness of the charges. Those who abuse the …

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Remarks by Acting Deputy Chief of Mission Dan Koski at the Ceremony for the “Advanced Internet and Social Media Investigations” Course Completion

Good morning.  ASP Director Veliu, Director Nano, thank you for inviting me here today to participate in the final Antiterrorism Assistance Training Course of the year. Congratulations to all of today’s graduates!  During the past year, you have deepened your knowledge of investigations and, with the assistance of the American trainers and mentors, have used …

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Remarks by Acting Deputy Chief of Mission Dan Koski at the School of Magistrates Court Administration Project

High Judicial Council Chair Llagami, Director Sadushi, School of Magistrates Faculty, distinguished guests and chancellors, thank you all for being with  us today at this important event. Today we are here to recognize another step forward towards implementing judicial reform in Albania:  the successful completion of the Summer Court Administration Program*. Reform of Albania’s judiciary …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Moses-Ones at the Independence Day Celebration

President Meta, Speaker Ruçi, Ministers and Members of the Parliament, Representatives of the Diplomatic Corps, guests: It is an honor and a privilege for me, along with all our Embassy colleagues, to be joined this evening by our close friends and partners to celebrate 243 years of American independence and freedom.  A warm welcome to …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States welcomes the conclusions of the ODIHR election observation mission, which found that the municipal elections of June 30 were conducted in a generally peaceful and orderly manner and offered an overall positive assessment of the vote counting.  We recognize, however, as the ODIHR mission noted, that the political standoff and polarization contributed …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Moses-Ones at the AmCham Celebration of the U.S. Independence Day

AmCham members, friends, and colleagues: Good afternoon. I’m honored to be here today, thank you for inviting me.  I’d like to start by welcoming AmCham’s new president of the Board of Directors, Enio Jaco, and new executive director, Ilir Trimi.  Welcome Enio and Ilir; I look forward to working with you. Two hundred and forty-three …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy calls on all political leaders, government officials, security personnel, and citizens of Albania to ensure that the elections on June 30 are conducted in an orderly and transparent manner. We urge political leaders to reject any and all forms of violence, or any attempts to disrupt the electoral process or otherwise interfere …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States wants what the people of Albania deserve:  A rule of law that protects civil servants and schoolhouses from senseless attacks, that defends the integrity and the safety of the electoral process, and that keeps the promise of a citizen’s right to peacefully protest while holding accountable those who engage in violence.  We …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy condemns the violence taking place during tonight’s protest. Peaceful assembly and the right to petition the government are hallmarks of healthy democracies, but they are rights that must be exercised peacefully. The use of pyrotechnics, especially when aimed at police, is not a peaceful act, is unacceptable, and undemocratic. We call on …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Leyla Moses-Ones at the Embassy Iftar Dinner

Good evening Chairman Spahiu, Baba Mondi, Chairwoman Aliko, Rector Gjana, teachers and students.  Thank you for coming to our Iftar — we are so privileged to share it with you.  Tonight is part of a rich tradition of celebrating the role of faith in our lives, and a reminder that Ramadan has a long tradition …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

We welcome the European Commission’s recommendation for opening accession talks with Albania and its recognition that Albania continues to make progress in implementing crucial and irreversible reforms. The United States remains committed to working with our Albanian and EU partners to ensure Albania’s successful EU integration, including our full support for the ongoing implementation of …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States respects citizens’ democratic right to peacefully demonstrate. We call on all participants in today’s demonstrations – both citizens and law enforcement officials – to refrain from violence. Provoking physical altercations or using projectiles such as explosive devices, Molotov cocktails, and rocks, is undemocratic and unlawful. Those who engage in these violent activities …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires Moses-Ones at the “Schools as Community Centers” Event

Honorable Deputy Speaker Hysi, Deputy Minister Treni, Coordinator Sojati, Mr. Hroni, distinguished guests. It is my honor to be here with you today. Allow me to begin today by congratulating not only IDM for the conclusion of the successful pilot, “Schools as Community Centers,” but also to all those who helped ensure the program’s success.  …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

Peaceful demonstrations are essential to healthy democracies, and the right of citizens to assemble and to protest against their government is fundamental.  Force and violence, however, have no place in the democratic process. We condemn the violence that took place during the May 11 protests in Tirana and those responsible.  The violence resulted in both …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy condemns the violence taking place during tonight’s protest. The opposition’s stated objective to make Albania’s democracy stronger runs counter to the violence currently being perpetrated by protesters. Violence is inherently undemocratic, and it must stop. Protest leaders have a responsibility to encourage calm. We call on all parties to show restraint.

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The right to engage in peaceful protest is a fundamental democratic right.  For the past several months, the majority of participants has exercised its democratic right to peacefully protest.  However, the moment a peaceful protest is marred by an act of violence, by even one individual, the democratic purpose of the protest is compromised.  It …

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USAID Assistant Administrator Brock Bierman Statement Following High Judicial Council Roundtable

There is no question that, over the past two decades, Albania has made tremendous progress in strengthening its economic and democratic foundations. USAID has been proud to support these efforts, and we continue to do so. Further progress demands continued commitment to justice reform. The Albanian people deserve transparent institutions, especially independent judicial institutions that …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Moses-Ones, senior level workshop on Terrorist Use of Technology

Good Morning Director Veliu, ladies and gentlemen Before I turn to the topic of the conference, I would like to say a few words about Albania’s State Police. I want to recognize all the efforts that the ASP has made over the past year. You have shown professionalism and courage in your duties to protect …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Moses-Ones at the Breakfast with Women in Politics

Madame Minister, Ambassador Soreca, members of parliament, Ms. Godaj, distinguished guests. Thank you all for the invitation to be part of this event today.  Empowering women and girls is among the main priorities of the U.S. Government.  And, our U.S. National Security Strategy highlights the fact that investing in women helps nations achieve greater peace …

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Remarks by A/DCM Koski at the American Chamber of Commerce General Assembly

AmCham Chairman Crawford, Board Members, Deputy Minister Haxhi, AmCham Members, Friends, and Colleagues: Good evening. It’s an honor to be here tonight.  I’d like to start by bidding farewell to Mark Crawford, the Chamber’s outgoing chairman, and Enida Bezhani, AmCham’s former executive director.  On behalf of the United States Embassy, allow me to extend my …

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Transcript of Interview of DAS Matthew Palmer with Anila Hoxha of Top Channel

Anila Hoxha: Mr. Palmer, what does justice reform represent for the U.S. Government in Albania and what assistance does it plan for the next steps of justice reform? DAS Palmer: Thank you for having me here and thank you for that question. Justice reform for the United States represents a path forward for the Albanian …

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Transcript of DAS Palmer Q&A with USG Journalism Program Alumni

Thimi Samarxhiu, Vizion +: Senior U.S. officials have stated in many cases that Russia’s influence in the Western Balkans has brought instability in this region.  Do you see the latest events in the region, especially Albania, affected by this influence? DAS Palmer: I think it is important to put this in a broader regional context, …

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Remarks by Chargé Moses-Ones at the MRAP Donation Ceremony

Minister Xhacka, General Kollcaku, General Mullai, members of the Albanian Armed Forces (AAF), and distinguished guests. Thank you for allowing me the privilege to be here with you today.  It is an honor to partake in this commemorative ceremony.  A ceremony that exemplifies the United States Governments commitment to stronger ties with Albania, and is …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

While peaceful protest is a fundamental pillar of a democracy, inciting or committing acts of violence, including the destruction of public property, is unlawful.  We urge all stakeholders in Albania’s democracy to practice restraint during the upcoming March 16 protest.  The United States Embassy views the current government and parliament of Albania as legitimately elected …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

A healthy democracy requires an opposition that operates constructively within constitutional institutions. Threats by the Democratic Party, the Socialist Movement for Integration, and other opposition parties to abandon their mandates in Parliament undermine the basic principles of democracy and subvert the important progress Albania has achieved on rule of law and responsible governance. The United …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The right to peacefully assemble, petition the government, and protest for positive change are hallmarks of a free and healthy democratic society. It is a right exercised often in the United States. However, this right must be exercised peacefully. Violence against people or property is unacceptable. We call upon all involved in Saturday’s protest, and …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires Moses-Ones at the Progress Achieved in the Fight Against Cannabis Event

Dear Minister Lleshaj, Director of Police Veliu, Ambassador Soreca, distinguished guests and participants; I would like to start today by thanking Minister Lleshi for the invitation to speak today on this very important topic. The war on illicit drugs is not just a campaign – it is a cause for democracy.  It is a show …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

We congratulate the Albanian State Police and partner law enforcement agencies for the arrest of international drug trafficker Klement Balili.  This marks a major step for the Albanian people on the path towards enforced rule of law, and serves as demonstrable progress towards opening EU accession talks.  We look forward to a swift and thorough …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

We commend the Government of Albania for taking action against the Iranian regime for its terrorist plotting on Albanian soil, threatening European security. The Government of Albania has demonstrated true leadership on our joint efforts to send a clear message to Iran that conducting terrorist operations in Europe, or anywhere else, is unacceptable and will …

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Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Moses-Ones Remarks at the National Conference against Trafficking in Persons

Good morning Deputy Minister Voda, good morning Ambassador Norman, Deputy Ambassador Wilton, Ladies and Gentlemen. Today, I want to talk about the victims.  I want us to enter their world.  Because they are everywhere, and we need to see them.  We also need to recognize their strength, their bravery, and the opportunities they can have …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy in Tirana welcomes the establishment of the High Prosecutorial Council and the High Judicial Council.   We congratulate the prosecutors and judges who took part in the voting for their courage and for choosing to change Albania’s history. The formation of the Councils marks a crucial step in the implementation of Albania’s justice …

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Remarks by Country Representative Mikaela Meredith at the Signing of Agreement between USAID and OSHEE

Good morning and thank you to OSHEE CEO, Mr. Adrian Cela. I am honored to be here for this MoU signing and to mark the newest stage of partnership between our two governments. Not long ago, Albania faced a real energy crisis. Power outages, high import prices, and energy losses estimated as high as 45 …

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Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Moses-Ones Remarks at the Meeting to Elect Members of the HPC

Prosecutor General Marku, Minister Gjonaj, Ambassador Soreca, honorable diplomats, Chief prosecutors and prosecutors, Over two years ago this country made a commitment to its people and to its international partners to dramatically improve the justice system.  Early in the morning of July 22, 2016, the parliament unanimously passed the necessary constitutional changes and, thus, promised …

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Remarks by A/DCM Koski at the Annual Conference of the People’s Advocate

People’s Advocate Ballanca, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen. This past summer, several of my Embassy colleagues attended a ceremony at the site of the former communist labor camp in Tepelena.  They gathered there with many others, including several of you here today, to honor the former inmates of that camp. During that ceremony, President Meta …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

An independent, accountable, and professional judiciary will benefit Albanian citizens who have overwhelmingly expressed support for justice sector reform. A fully functioning justice system is also in the clear interest of Albanian judges and prosecutors. We call on Albanian judges and prosecutors to ensure a free and transparent election process for magistrates in the High Prosecutorial …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

This year, the U.S. Embassy has called upon honest, patriotic judges and prosecutors with integrity to serve their country on the High Judicial Council and High Prosecutorial Council.  With the formation of these justice institutions on the horizon, Albania is on the verge of creating a justice system that truly serves the interests of its …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Leyla Moses-Ones at the School of Magistrates

Prosecutor General Marku, students and faculty of the School of Magistrates, In December 1999, the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution 54/134, proclaiming November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.  This day is the official start of 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, a yearly campaign where we …

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Statement by Secretary Pompeo on Albania National Day

On behalf of the United States government and the American people, I congratulate the people of Albania as you celebrate your Independence Day. As you commemorate your 106 years of independence, we in America celebrate and recognize our enduring friendship with Albania. The United States values Albania’s commitment to NATO and the Global Coalition to …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

Yesterday marked a significant step forward for the Albanian people, who demand and deserve true justice from their judicial system. We were encouraged by the work of Albanian prosecutors, who, based on evidence, convinced the Serious Crime judges that a crime boss and other criminals belong in jail. We applaud the careful review of this …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

Over the past many months, we have been encouraged by the progress we have seen in the fight against organized crime and corruption in Albania – a direct result of the work done by Albanian authorities, particularly those police and prosecutors who strive for true justice for all Albanians.  There is more work to do, …

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Remarks by A/DCM Koski at the Tirana University Law School’s Graduation

Minister Gjonaj, colleagues of the Diplomatic Corps, distinguished guests, graduates, It is my honor to be with you today.  On behalf of the United States Government, I congratulate all of today’s graduates on your outstanding achievement.  I wish you all great success. I hope to be brief, so please allow me to share three messages with …

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Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires Leyla Moses-Ones at School of Magistrates Graduation Ceremony

Honorable Mr. Dedja, Mr. Sadushi, Mr. Zaganjori, colleague Ambassadors, Commissioner  Jourova, dear magistrates, good morning! Thank you for having me here today. It is an honor to be with you on this special occasion to mark your graduation from the School of Magistrates. [Now I will continue in English.] Honest. Courageous. Patriotic. These are the words the U.S. government has used to describe the …

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Remarks by Ambassador Lu at the Roundtable on the Campaign Against Organized Crime

Minister Xhafaj, Director General Veliu, ambassadorial colleagues, Eight months ago, we met to hear Minister Xhafaj declare war on organized crime.  At that time, we pledged our resources to support going after the big fish criminals. A lot has happened in eight months, but a lot more remains to be done. First, this government has …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

We congratulate Albania on the positive decision regarding the opening of EU accession talks.  Albania has made significant progress, and now needs to step up efforts to conclude key reforms.  We encourage Albania to increase momentum on judicial reform, anti-corruption and anti-organized crime.

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Statement by Ambassador Donald Lu

I am following closely the accusations against Minister Xhafaj and his brother Agron Xhafaj. The facts and evidence, including the veracity and circumstances surrounding the reported audio recording, deserve an independent investigation.  But this cannot be a reason to interrupt the work of the police and prosecutors to arrest dangerous organized crime leaders.  Now is …

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Statement by Secretary Mike Pompeo on LGBTI Pride Month

The United States joins people around the world in celebrating Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex (LGBTI) Pride Month, and reaffirms its commitment to protecting and defending the human rights of all, including LGBTI persons. In many parts of the world, LGBTI individuals and their supporters continue to face violence, arrest, harassment and intimidation for …

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Statement by Secretary Pompeo On the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia

The United States stands for the protection of fundamental freedoms and universal human rights. Our nation was founded on the bedrock principle that we are all created equal – and that every person is entitled to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Around the world, far too many governments continue to arrest and abuse …

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Statement by Secretary Pompeo On the Occasion of Ramadan

On behalf of the United States Department of State, I offer best wishes to Muslims around the world for a peaceful and blessed Ramadan. For those observing this month, it is a time of reverence, generosity, and spiritual introspection. Ramadan is also a cherished time of community, often spent reconnecting with family and friends. It …

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Statement by Secretary Pompeo On the Opening of U.S. Embassy Jerusalem

Today I am proud to celebrate the opening of the United States Embassy to Israel in Jerusalem. This significant event fulfills a promise made by President Trump. As he proclaimed on December 6, 2017, “Seventy years ago, the United States, under President Truman, recognized the State of Israel. Since then, the State of Israel has …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy welcomes the progress made by Albania in its fight against organized crime and corruption. The court decision to place Saimir Tahiri under house arrest is a sign that this important corruption case will be decided fairly and transparently in the courts. The arrest of Met Kanani in Turkey and 14 members of …

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Statement by Secretary Pompeo On President Trump’s Decision to Withdraw From the JCPOA

As we exit the Iran deal, we will be working with our allies to find a real, comprehensive, and lasting solution to the Iranian threat. We have a shared interest with our allies in Europe and around the world to prevent Iran from ever developing a nuclear weapon. But our effort is broader than just …

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Ambassador Lu Remarks at the “New Business Models for CSO” Conference

Deputy Prime Minister Mesi, Mrs. Hoxha, ladies and gentlemen, Two years ago, I said at another Partners Albania conference: Civil society in Albania is strong and dynamic. Civil society is largely led by women and young people with energy, enthusiasm and optimism. And civil society can play an important watchdog role against corruption. When I …

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Press Statement by Heather Nauert, State Department Spokesperson

We continue to closely follow disturbing reports on April 7 regarding another alleged chemical weapons attack, this time targeting a hospital in Douma, Syria. Reports from a number of contacts and medical personnel on the ground indicate a potentially high number of casualties, including among families hiding in shelters. These reports, if confirmed, are horrifying …

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Statement by Spokesperson Nauert on Holding Russia Accountable for its Destabilizing Behavior

On March 4, Russia used a military-grade nerve agent to attempt to murder a British citizen and his daughter in Salisbury. This attack on our Ally the United Kingdom put countless innocent lives at risk and resulted in serious injury to three people, including a police officer. In response to this outrageous violation of the …

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Statement from the Press Secretary on the Expulsion of Russian Intelligence Officers

Today President Donald J. Trump ordered the expulsion of dozens of Russian intelligence officers from the United States and the closure of the Russian consulate in Seattle due to its proximity to one of our submarine bases and Boeing. The United States takes this action in conjunction with our NATO allies and partners around the …

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Statement by Secretary Tillerson on International Women’s Day

As we commemorate International Women’s Day on March 8th, the United States renews our steadfast commitment to addressing inequalities between women and men at home and abroad and reaffirms the importance of advancing the status of women and girls globally. We will continue to implement measures to strengthen the economic empowerment of women and girls …

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Statement by U.S. Ambassador Donald Lu

The U.S. Embassy and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration commend the Albanian State Police, Serious Crimes Prosecutors, and Customs officials for the seizure of 614 kilos of Colombian cocaine yesterday in Durres.  This represents the largest single seizure of cocaine or heroin in several years.  It is a welcome sign that Albanian law enforcement is …

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State Department Announces Fulbright Top Producing Institutions

The U.S. Department of State is pleased to announce that the lists of more than 150 U.S. higher education institutions that sent the most Fulbright U.S. Students and Scholars abroad in academic year 2017-2018 are now available. The lists highlight the Fulbright Program’s strong institutional diversity and impact on American communities. The State Department’s Bureau …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States Embassy was disappointed by Prime Minister Rama’s remarks about Kosovo and Albania on the occasion of Kosovo’s 10th Anniversary of Independence.   Careless language alluding to unification is unhelpful and damaging to Albania’s relationships with its neighbors. We call on all leaders to be good neighbors and abandon the divisive language of the …

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Remarks by Secretary Tillerson at the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS Ministerial

Good morning, and thank you, Excellencies, Minister al-Sabah, for the – for welcoming me today, and I want to also greet excellencies, colleagues, and friends of the coalition. I appreciate the opportunity to address you. It has been approximately three and a half years since the global coalition began its effort to defeat ISIS. At …

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The United States Provides Disaster Response Equipment to Albania

Today U.S. Ambassador Donald Lu and Albanian Defense Minister Olta Xhaçka welcomed the delivery of the first shipment of U.S. disaster response equipment to Albania’s Directorate of Civil Emergencies to enhance their capacity to respond to future flooding.  The shipment was sent from Livorno, Italy after extensive coordination with the European Command (EUCOM) Humanitarian Assistance …

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Remarks by Ambassador Lu at the Ceremony Marking the Donation of Flood Prevention and Control Equipment

Minister Xhaçka, Director Premçi, brave men and women of the Albanian Armed Forces, Good afternoon.  I come with a simple message from your American allies — We believe in the heroism of Albanian soldiers, sailors and airmen. We have seen this heroism in Afghanistan, in Iraq, in Bosnia, in Mali and in Latvia. We have …

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Remarks by Secretary Tillerson on The Way Forward for the United States Regarding Syria

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Thank you. Thank you. Thank you so much. Well, good morning. And I really, really appreciate this opportunity to swing down to Stanford while I was out on the West Coast and particularly to address this group. And I want to thank Stanford and the Hoover Institution and the international studies group for allowing …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy welcomes the decision today by the CEC to remove the mandates of Aqif Rakipi and Gledion Rehovica. This decision is positive evidence that the important process of decriminalization, begun in December 2015, is continuing in Albania.

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Secretary’s Remarks: I Am Proud of Our Diplomacy

Over the past year, the United States has faced immense challenges in its dealings with North Korea, China and Russia, and in its efforts to defeat international terrorism. But Americans should be encouraged by the progress the State Department and United States Agency for International Development have made in pushing for global peace and stability. …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The President’s announcement affirmed the current and historic reality of Jerusalem’s role as Israel’s capital. The United States recognized the simple truth that Jerusalem is home to Israel’s legislature, prime minister and supreme court. We will continue to work for peace. A process that we hope will offer best outcome for both Israeli and Palestinian …

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Statement by Secretary Tillerson on President Trump’s National Security Strategy

The United States faces a 21st century global environment that presents unconventional threats from non-state actors, as well as challenges to our economic and national security from traditional state actors. Whether the threats are rogue nations seeking nuclear weapons, terrorists plotting to attack our homeland, or malicious cyber actors seeking to damage and destabilize our …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States Embassy strongly condemns the violence that took place during today’s protests in Tirana.  We support the right of citizens to peacefully protest, but damaging of public property, releasing of smoke grenades in Parliament and violence are not acceptable.  We call on all parties to show restraint and encourage calm. The people of …

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U.S. Department of State Declaration on the Centennial of President John F. Kennedy

The Department of State pays tribute to the memory and legacy of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy on the centennial of his birth in Brookline, Massachusetts in 1917. President Kennedy pursued a foreign policy based on American strength, a commitment to human freedom and human dignity and the determined use of diplomacy to advance our country’s …

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Remarks by Ambassador Donald Lu at the People’s Advocate Annual Conference

Honorable Deputy Head of the Parliament Hysi, honorable Deputy Prime Minister Mesi, honorable Advocate e Popullit Balanca, diplomatic colleagues, ladies and gentlemen, Many years ago when my wife was working on her academic research on domestic violence, she taught yoga at a shelter in Central Asia for women who had been trafficked or were victims …

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Press Statement by Secretary Tillerson on International Human Rights Day

Sixty-nine years ago today, in the aftermath of World War II, the UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to recognize and elevate the inherent dignity and equal and inalienable rights of all individuals, and that these rights are the foundation of freedom, justice, and peace in the world. For those who …

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Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s Joint Statement to the Media with E.U. High Representative Federica Mogherini

MODERATOR: (In progress) ladies and gentlemen, and welcome. High Representative Vice President Federica Mogherini and U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson just had a bilateral meeting and will deliver press statements to update you on their discussions. High Representative, you have the floor. HIGH REPRESENTATIVE MOGHERINI: Thank you, Maja, and it’s a pleasure to welcome …

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Statement by Secretary Tillerson on Albania National Day

On behalf of the people of the United States, I offer my best wishes to the people of Albania as you celebrate 105 years of independence. Albania is a valued friend and ally, and the United States looks forward to your continued progress towards greater Euro-Atlantic integration and EU membership. We deeply appreciate Albania’s contributions …

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Statement by Secretary Tillerson on International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women

In observance of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (IDEVAW) on November 25 and the accompanying 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, the United States reaffirms its commitment to defending the rights of women and girls to live free from violence. IDEVAW and the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based …

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Press Statement by Secretary Tillerson on Transgender Day of Remembrance

On Transgender Day of Remembrance, the United States honors the memory of the many transgender individuals who have lost their lives to acts of violence. Transgender individuals and their advocates, along with lesbian, gay, bisexual and intersex persons, are facing increasing physical attacks and arbitrary arrests in many parts of the world. Often these attacks …

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Joint Statement on Syria Chemical Weapons

by Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel, and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson On October 26, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons-United Nations Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM), a body established by unanimous decision of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), concluded that the Assad regime is …

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U.S. Embassy Tirana’s Online Auction

The U.S. Embassy, Tirana, Albania is selling surplus property (two vehicles, household furniture and appliances, office furniture, computer equipment and many more) via web based online auction. Surplus Property is being sold according to the regulations of the U.S. Department of State. Each lot has an assigned unique number (lot number), detailed description, condition, functionality and …

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Statement by Secretary Tillerson on the President’s New Immigration Priorities

The President’s new immigration priorities are focused on keeping Americans safe, ensuring our sovereignty through strong borders, and preserving our country as a nation of laws. The first duty of the federal government is to provide for the national security of the American people, and President Trump’s measures will end vulnerabilities in our immigration system …

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Presidential Proclamation Honoring the Victims of the Tragedy in Las Vegas, Nevada

THE PRESIDENT: My fellow Americans, we are joined together today in sadness, shock, and grief. Last night, a gunman opened fire on a large crowd at a country music concert in Las Vegas, Nevada. He brutally murdered more than 50 people, and wounded hundreds more. It was an act of pure evil. The FBI and …

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Statement from President Donald J. Trump on Down Syndrome Awareness Month

During Down Syndrome Awareness Month, we celebrate the significant contributions that people with Down syndrome make to their families, to their communities, and to our Nation.  We also salute the family members, caregivers, medical professionals, and advocates who have dedicated themselves to ensuring that these extraordinary people enjoy lives filled with love and increasing opportunity. …

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Secretary’s Remarks: Remarks at the UN Security Council Session on Nuclear Non-Proliferation

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, good afternoon. And I appreciate the opportunity to address the Security Council again, and I thank this month’s – this month’s chair, Ethiopia. Members of the Security Council talk often of threats to global security. The focus of today’s Security Council meeting is an issue of worldwide implications: nuclear proliferation. At a …

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Remarks by Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson at a Press Availability

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, good evening, all. I want to begin, first, by extending our condolences to all those who have suffered, continue to suffer, from the devastation from the natural disasters that we are witnessing around the Western Hemisphere. Obviously, this succession of massive hurricanes in the Caribbean are really testing, I think, the will and …

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2016 International Religious Freedom Report

The constitution guarantees freedom of conscience and religion. It stipulates there is no official religion, says the state is neutral in matters of belief, recognizes the equality and independence of religious groups, and prohibits discrimination based on religion. The government has agreements with the Sunni Muslim and Bektashi communities, the Catholic and Orthodox Churches, and the Evangelical Brotherhood of Albania …

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A delegation of U.S. Senators Visits Albania

A delegation of four U.S. Senators visited Albania today to discuss the U.S.-Albania partnership, and issues of  security, defense and counterterrorism cooperation.  Senators Blunt, Cornyn, Cotton, and Tillis met with President Ilir Meta, Government officials, and leaders from the Democratic Party to underscore the importance of Albania’s role in regional stability, counter-terrorism efforts, and the …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States congratulates the citizens of Albania for exercising their democratic right to vote in the parliamentary elections on June 25, 2017. Voting was conducted efficiently and peacefully in the majority of polling places. We commend the dedicated poll workers and observers who worked through a national holiday and the extreme heat to carry …

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Press Statement by Secretary Rex W. Tillerson On the Occasion of Eid al-Fitr

On behalf of the U.S. Department of State, best wishes to all Muslims celebrating Eid al-Fitr. This holiday marks the culmination of Ramadan, a month in which many experience meaning and inspiration in acts of fasting, prayer, and charity. This day offers an opportunity to reflect on our shared commitment to building peaceful and prosperous …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy supports the statements of the leaders of the three largest political parties in support of judicial reform. They are correct that judicial reform will move forward, but the Albanian people should be concerned about attempts to weaken the reform to protect corrupt judges and prosecutors, including those with ties to organized crime. …

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Press Statement by Secretary Rex Tillerson on LGBTI Pride Month

In recognition of LGBTI Month, the Department of State affirms its solidarity with the human rights defenders and civil society organizations working around the world to uphold the fundamental freedoms of LGBTI persons to live with dignity and freedom. We also recognize that LGBTI persons continue to face the threat of violence and discrimination. Violence …

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Statement by the Secretary on the Manchester Attack

Our hearts go out to the families of those who have lost loved ones and to those injured in the attack in Manchester, U.K. While it is too early to determine those responsible for this atrocity, we are working closely with the British government and supporting their efforts to investigate and respond to this attack.

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Democracy Commission Supports Initiatives of Local Non-Governmental Organizations

In the most recent round of the Democracy Commission Small Grants Program, 18 civil society organizations received a total of $ 223,000 in funding for projects that address issues such as civic engagement, women’s empowerment, human rights/ minority rights, youth activism, judicial reform, and environmental protection. Democracy Commission supports initiatives of local non-governmental organizations (NGOs) …

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Members of the U.S. House of Representatives Visit Albania

A delegation of Members of the U.S. House of Representatives, led by Congressman Bob Goodlatte, visited Albania on Wednesday, where they highlighted the U.S.- Albania strategic partnership, the importance of the country’s judicial reform, and regional issues. Representatives Steve King, Matt Gaetz, Dave Trott, David Cicilline, and Peter DeFazio joined Goodlatte, who serves as the chairman of …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy supports the Prime Minister’s call for postponement of the Kavaja municipal elections in order to maintain the focus of the government and the opposition on the dialogue process.  We encourage the continuation and acceleration of the dialogue process as there is limited time remaining before the June 18 elections to resolve these …

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U.S. Senator John McCain Visits Albania

U.S. Senator John McCain visited Albania on Friday, where he highlighted the U.S.- Albania military partnership, the importance of the country’s judicial reform, and efforts to defeat ISIS. Senator McCain, who serves as the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, met with President Bujar Nishani, Prime Minister Edi Rama, Parliamentary Leader Ilir Meta, and …

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U.S. Embassy Funds Renovation of the Development Center for Persons with Disabilities in Shkodër

On March 23, U.S. Ambassador Donald Lu and Chief of U.S. Office of Defense Cooperation, Lieutenant Colonel Robert Johnston joined local authorities to inaugurate the newly renovated Development Center for Persons with Disabilities in Shkoder. This project was made possible by the Humanitarian Assistance (HA) program of the United States Department of Defense. The HA …

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Press Statement by Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson on the Attack in London

On behalf of the United States, I express my condolences to the victims and their families. The American people send their thoughts and prayers to the people of the United Kingdom. We condemn these horrific acts of violence, and whether they were carried out by troubled individuals or by terrorists, the victims know no difference. …

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Remarks by Secretary Tillerson on the President’s Executive Order Signed Today

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Hello. Good morning and thank you for joining us. The executive order signed by the President earlier today, Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States, is a vital measure for strengthening our national security. It is the President’s solemn duty to protect the American people. And with this order, …

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Press Statement by Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson

On President Trump’s Speech to Joint Session of Congress As the President laid out in his address to Congress, the State Department will continue to engage to advance U.S. interests in the world in cooperation with our partners and allies. We will also continue to support policies and institutions that keep Americans safe, including a …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy welcomes former parliamentarian Armando Prenga’s departure from the parliament.  Those with criminal records have no place in the parliament, courts, government, or municipalities of a NATO member country that aspires to join the EU.  We encourage the Albanian people and Albanian institutions to be vigilant in preventing criminals from becoming candidates in …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

T‎he U.S. Embassy has revoked the non-immigrant visas of several Albanian judges and prosecutors after determining that the officials no longer qualify for these visas.  Because visa records are confidential under U.S. law, we cannot comment on individual cases.  The U.S. Embassy took this action in advance of the upcoming vetting process that will assess …

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Readout of Secretary of Defense James Mattis’ Call with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg

Pentagon Spokesperson Capt. Jeff Davis provided the following readout: Secretary Mattis spoke today by telephone with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg to reconnect and discuss the key role NATO plays in transatlantic security. The secretary, who previously served as NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander for Transformation, wanted to place the call on his first full day …

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The Inaugural Address: Remarks of President Donald J. Trump

As Prepared for Delivery – Chief Justice Roberts, President Carter, President Clinton, President Bush, President Obama, fellow Americans, and people of the world: thank you. We, the citizens of America, are now joined in a great national effort to rebuild our country and to restore its promise for all of our people. Together, we will …

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Press Statement by United States Embassy in Tirana

The Embassy of the United States welcomes the decision of the Central Election Commission and the request of the Prosecutor General to remove the mandates of three politicians, Elvis Rroshi, Shkëlqim Selami, and Dashamir Tahiri, under the decriminalization law. Today’s decision is a victory for the Albanian people and a warning for criminals considering whether …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy in Tirana welcomes the decision of Albania’s Constitutional Court on the vetting law.  We call on all political parties to respect the decision of the Court.  We also urge Albania’s leaders to work swiftly to implement all of the historic reforms of Albania’s justice system.  A meaningful reform that rids the judicial …

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Remarks by Deputy Chief of Mission David Muniz at the CRS-Caritas Closing Conference

Deputy Minister Gjebrea, Dr. Nikolla, Mr. D’Silva, members of civil society – especially our friends and partners at Catholic Relief Services and Caritas. The fight against human trafficking is one of the United States’ highest priorities.  It is an affront to our core values, it is a crime of heinous proportions, and it violates our …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The U.S. Embassy welcomes the December 10 opinion of the Venice Commission on Albania’s Vetting Law. The vetting of judges will be a meaningful step towards ridding Albania of its deep judicial corruption‎, and the Venice Commission’s opinion should put to rest any legitimate concerns over the law. We look forward to the decision of …

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Press Release

Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director John Brennan visited Albania to meet with a variety of leaders and discuss a range of issues including regional security, counterterrorism cooperation, intelligence sharing, and other bilateral affairs. During his visit, Director Brennan met with Prime Minister Rama, President Nishani, Minister of Defense Kodheli, and leaders from the intelligence community. …

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Remarks by President Barack Obama on the Administration’s Approach to Counterterrorism

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you so much!  (Applause.)  Thank you.  Thank you so much, everybody.  Thank you.  Everybody, please have a seat.  Have a seat.  Well, thank you so much. Good afternoon, everybody.  I was just told that was going to be the last “Hail to the Chief” on the road, and it got me kind …

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Ambassador Donald Lu Live Facebook Webchat

Katerina: Hello to everyone following us live at the US Embassy Tirana Facebook page! I’m Katerina Hatija, the alumni coordinator for the State Department’s YES program, and a student of informatics. Merxhan Daci: Hello everyone! I’m Merxhan Daci, a recent journalism graduate and one of the participants of Embassy’s Investigative Journalism Lab project. Katerina: We …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The European Union and the United States respect the authority of the Constitutional Court to review the Vetting Law and suspend its implementation. The Constitutional Court has said that it would refer the law to the Venice Commission. We encourage that referral to happen as soon as possible to prevent delays. The United States and …

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Deputy Chief of Mission David Muniz at the ‘Empowering Local Partners against Violent Extremism’ Workshop

Countering Violent Extremism requires creative solutions and cooperative effort around the globe.  In this regard, Albania has a very unique story to tell. Albania is rightly renowned for its religious tolerance and its culture of hospitality.  Historically Albania has a tradition of protecting vulnerable groups.  Albanians have accepted refugees and those fleeing conflict and persecution …

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Remarks by Deputy Chief of Mission David Muniz at the National Trafficking in Persons Conference

*Human trafficking remains a global challenge which requires energy and dedication to combat effectively.  It is my pleasure to be here today to congratulate everyone who has contributed to the fight against trafficking in Albania over the last year.  I will highlight the U.S. government’s strong appreciation for National Coordinator Elona Gjebrea and, who has …

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U.S. Department of State Notice of Funding Opportunity

Program Office: Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, International Programs Section Deadline for Applications: Friday, November 7, 2016, 11:59 pm EDT   The Department of State Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (TIP Office) announces an open competition for FY 2017 projects to combat trafficking in persons outside of the United …

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U.S. Embassy Statement

The United States Embassy welcomes the decision of the Albanian Parliament to adopt the first implementing law of judicial reform.  This important law will begin the process for vetting prosecutors and judges.  We applaud those Members of Parliament who voted in favor of this important step in carrying out the constitutional amendments passed unanimously on …

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Statement by National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice on Syrian Refugee Admissions

Less than a year ago, in response to an historic global refugee crisis, involving millions of Syrians in flight from violence and conflict, President Obama directed his Administration to increase the number of Syrian refugees provided safe haven in the United States.  While refugee admissions are only a small part of our broader humanitarian efforts …

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