Albania opposition boycotts parliament

AP News
Posted: Feb 23, 2017 5:48 AM

TIRANA, Albania (AP) — Albania's main opposition Democratic party has boycotted parliament in their street protest calling for free and fair elections.

The Democrats' lawmakers did not attend Thursday's Assembly session, despite calls from the international community.

Their boycott threatens to block a judicial reform bill set as Albania's main step toward launching of membership negotiations with the European Union. The legislation seeks to root out bribery and ensure that judges and prosecutors are independent from politics.

Since Saturday, the Democrats have blocked the main boulevard in Tirana, the capital, saying they don't trust the left-wing government to hold the June 18 parliamentary elections fairly and want a caretaker cabinet instead.