Albanian President Ilir Meta and Prime Minister Edi Rama have responded to Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s implied threat against Albania for conspiring with the US against the Iranian regime.
Speaking to a gathering of regime supporters today, Khamenei possibly referred to Albania when he said that “a small and very treacherous European country and a number of Iranian mercenaries and traitors, they got together with some foreigners and tried to conspire against the Islamic republic.”
The Iranian leader might have referred to a June “human rights conference” of the People’s Mujahedin of Iran (Mojahedin-e Khalq – MEK) – a political-militant organization working to topple the Iranian regime, with over 3,000 of its members sheltered in a compound in Albania after an agreement between the Albanian and US governments.
Among representatives, reportedly from 47 countries, speakers in the conference included President Trump’s lawyer and ex- Mayor of New York, Rudy Giuliani, former Democratic senator Joe Lieberman, Columbian presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt, former US Marine Corps Commander General James Conway, Lincoln Bloomfield, and British MP Matthew Offord.
Speakers in the event referred to “the regime of terror”, the “murderers in Tehran”, and called for the immediate overthrow of the current Iranian government.
President Ilir Meta condemned today’s attack by Iran on two US military bases as a “provocation” that could lead to “dangerous outcomes for the region and its stability”. Meta called on Iran to comply with international laws, and stated that Albania stand with the US and NATO against international terrorism.
In a possible response to Khamenei’s earlier comment, Meta added that “Albania is not a devilish country, but a democratic one, which has suffered under an unparalleled devilish dictatorship, therefore it holds human rights as holy.”
Prime Minister Edi Rama, who expelled the Iranian ambassador about a year ago, was also asked today on possible dangers posed to Albania by the presence of MEK members in the country. He said he was “not surprised” by Khamenei’s comments, and dismissed all concerns:
“This is not a new topic for us. We took an action that honors Albania and that is part of the strategic alliance with the US, and open the doors to a group of people whose lives were in danger. They are in Albania as a result of a humanitarian operation and not a political one.”
Rama praised Albania’s cooperation with the US on security issues. He said Albania’s contribution to the alliance with the US was not through “rockets and bombs” but through “offering humanitarian sheltering” for MEK members who are threatened by a “dictatorial regime”.