Thousands take to street in Albanian judge row | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, March 04, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, March 04, 2020

Thousands take to street in Albanian judge row

Thousands protested on Monday in Albania's capital city Tirana against a left-wing government that they accuse of trying to take control of the judiciary.

President Ilir Meta, who organised the rally with the backing of the centre-right opposition, accused Prime Minister Edi Rama of trying to control the nomination of judges to the Constitutional Court.

Rama's government launched a vetting procedure in 2016 aimed at rooting out corrupt judges and boosting the rule of law -- as part of Albania's attempt to woo the European Union.

But Meta told the crowd Rama was "kidnapping" the court, adding: "This is not the rule of law but the power of those who want to control everything in a mafia-style manner."

"Rama, leave!" chanted the protesters who gathered at Tirana's main boulevard and waved the country's red flags featuring a black double-headed eagle.

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