Albania rejects 'political smearing' by Serbian leaders

Tensions between the countries has reached a new high after Serbian fan violence ended the Serbia-Albania football match on Tuesday.

Albania rejects 'political smearing' by Serbian leaders

World Bulletin/News Desk

The Albanian Foreign Ministry accused Serbian leaders of "political smearing," on Thursday.

“The statements of Serbia's high officials are against the basic ethics of diplomatic relations and reciprocity of conduct, self-restraint and respect between sovereign states,” the Albanian foreign ministry said in a statement.

Tension between Serbia and Albania reached a new high after Serbian fan violence put an early end to the Serbia-Albania football match in Belgrade on Tuesday.

The Ministry said it invites the “leaders of Serbia to show clarity and maturity by condemning the anti-Albanian acts that occurred before, during and after the football match between Serbia and Albania, such as the blocking of Albanian journalists and entrepreneurs accompanying the Albanian national team at the Belgrade airport, the burning of the Albanian flag in the stadium, 40-minutes of chanting about killing Albanians and the pathological violence against the Albanian national football team.”

For the second time in three days, the Albanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs convoked on Thursday the Serbian Ambassador in Tirana, Mr. Miroljub Zaric, to deliver a letter of protest by the Albanian government on the events in Belgrade.

On Tuesday, it was Serbian Foreign Ministry who convoked the Albanian ambassador in Belgrade to deliver a note of protest and demanding Tirana’s condemnation of the incident.

Serbia claims that the violence began with a provocation by Albanian fans who flew a map of “Greater Albania” with a drone in Belgrade Stadium.

Prime Minister Ivica Dacic has said that the incident during the Serbia-Albania football match was a deliberate and planned political provocation.

 "This incident is particularly controversial because the brother of the Albanian prime minister, who is supposed to be a guest here, was responsible for the incident. All this puts a political dimension of the whole event and this is a political provocation," Dacic told a newspaper. 

 Albanian Foreign Minister Ditmir Bushati and Prime minister Edi Rama replied to Serbia's claims in statements and in TV appearances over the past two days.

Edi Rama’s brother - Olsi Rama - has also denied that he was responsible for the drone that flew into the stadium, telling the Anadolu Agency on Wednesday that he was in the VIP seats taking pictures with his camera when police arrived. 

Albania said that the past and current history of the Balkans is testimony that it has never been a regional destabilizing factor nor an aggressor against freedom-loving people who seek independence.

Albania is not responsible for the fact that the past can weigh on the conscience and emotional state of Serbian high government officials, the Albanian Foreign Ministry said. 

With this tense relationship currently between Tirana and Belgrade, Rama is scheduled to visit Belgrade on October 22, the first visit by an Albanian premier since 1946.

Albanians and Serbians are still at odds due to the long-running tensions between the two countries over the city of Kosovo which is currently independent and under EU government.

The southeastern European state declared independence from Serbia in February 2008 as the Republic of Kosovo. It has a majority ethnic Albanian population.

 

Güncelleme Tarihi: 16 Ekim 2014, 22:38

Muhammed Öylek

YORUM EKLE