Replying to European Parliament Vice President and MEP Dimitris Papadimoulis on concerns over the Greek minority’s rights in southern Albania, European Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Johannes Hahn said the Commission placed great importance on protecting ethnic minority rights and was closely following the issue.
“The Commission attaches great importance to the protection of minorities and is closely following this issue, including the current secondary legislation process”, he said.
The European Commission was considering the prospect of providing financial and technical assistance to Albania to address shortcomings in the implementation of the property rights of the Greek minority in the neighbouring country.
As the Commissioner pointed out in his response to the Greek MEP, the Commission was aware of the concerns expressed by Dimitris Papadimoulis regarding the application of property rights throughout Albania and “is closely following the developments in this regard”.
Mr Papadimoulis had submitted a question regarding the decision by the Albanian cabinet to arbitrarily seize property belonging to the Greek minority for the development of tourism businesses.