Albanian Government Tough on Journalists, Easy on Drug Lords, Says EPP Rapporteur

MEP David Lega has criticized the Albanian government for exercising pressure on the media while being lenient on fighting drug cultivation in the country.

“Albanian leadership tends to be tough on journalists and easy on drug lords, while it should obviously be the other way around,“ stated Lega, the European People’s Party rapporteur on Albania in the European Parliament, speaking at Monday’s session of the European Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee on Albania.

Lega noted that Albanian cannabis “continues to plague Europe” and is expected to increase. He recalled that the fight against drug cultivation is one of the conditions for Albania to sit in accession talks with the EU.

Lega was equally harsh with the Albanian government’s insistence to pass the controversial law to censor online media.

“The proposed anti-defamation package is a disgrace, it’s unconstitutional, illegal and clearly violates the very basic democratic principles of rule of law and human rights,” he stated. The MEP warned that its approval will jeopardize Albania’s EU accession.

Lega urged the government to do everything to defend Albania’s press freedom and its outermost to dissolve organized crime networks in the country.