OSCE Ambassador to Albania, Bernd Borchardt will not face any disciplinary action despite publicly insulting female protestors two weeks ago.
A source of Exit at the OSCE with knowledge of the matter has stated that the investigation has been closed and that the ambassador will not face any disciplinary actions. They also told Exit that the German Deputy Head of Mission, who is seconded by the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs, came out in support of Borchardt.
The source speculated that the decision could be a reflection of the German political situation:
The German MFA is run by socialists, they were against the conditions imposed by Merkel’s party in the Bundestag. It explains it.
Furthermore, the source claimed that Igli Hasani, Albanian Ambassador to the OSCE in Vienna, had told the OSCE that the Albanian government had no problem with Borchardt.
Borchardt was caught on film sticking his middle finger up at female protestors from the Astir neighbourhood who were congregated outside the Police Directorate in Tirana. Residents have been protesting for over a year against the government’s plans to demolish their homes and businesses, many of which are in the process of being legalized, without proper compensation.
The women from Astir set up a civil society group, GUD, to call for justice and dignity after the incident. They protested yesterday outside the annual OSCE Mediterranean Conference held in Tirana.
Coordinator of the GUD, Enxhi Turtulli told Exit that the group plans on demonstrating at every public appearance of Ambassador Borchardt:
We want Mr Borchardt to go out of Albania. His gesture is shameful and we want justice in order to restore our dignity.