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Press Office

Athens, 21 March 2023

Meeting of President of Hellenic Parliament with Prime Minister of Albania

The President of the Hellenic Parliament Constantine Tassoulas emphasised the Hellenic Parliament's contribution to the upgrading of relations between Greece and Albania while welcoming the Prime Minister of Albania Edi Rama, who visited the Parliament today, in the framework of his stay in Athens. Mr Tassoulas also stressed that an important bridge connecting the two countries is the Greek ethnic minority in Albania and the community of Albanian citizens living in Greece. He also noted that Greece supports Albania's European perspective, as well as the rights of the Greek ehtnic minority, underlining the benefits for our country deriving from its 40-year EU membership.

The Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama, expressing his joy for his visit to Athens, referred to the continuous improvement of relations between the two countries.

On the occasion of the World Poetry day, the President of the Parliament presented Mr Rama with a French-language edition of poems by Giorgos Seferis and C.P. Cavafy, with the Albanian PM noting his love for Cavafy's poetry.

The meeting was attended by the Secretary General of the Parliament George Mylonakis, the Special Secretary of the Parliament Vasileios Bagiokos, the Diplomatic Advisor to the President, Ambassador Constantine Economides and the Ambassador of Greece to Tirana Konstantina Kamitsi. The Albanian PM was accompanied by the Minister of Finance and Economy Delina Ibrahimaj, the Deputy Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs for Economic Diplomacy Besart Kadia and the Ambassador of Albania to Athens Luela Hajdaraga.

The following statements were made:

Constantine TassoulasPresident of the Hellenic Parliament:

"I welcome you to the Hellenic Parliament, it is an honour and a pleasure. I welcome you in the framework of your visit to Greece to present at Zappeion Megaron an excellent exhibition of your own artistic concerns. We will discuss those today as well, but also the political aspect of our relations and I feel proud that our country's National Parliament has contributed to the improvement of relations between our two countries.

The title of your Exhibition is "Improvisations". In politics, the word has a different meaning; often we think of how we organise and maintain external relations and not of improvisations. I am certain that in this framework and at this stage in our relations, with inspiration and improvisation and in an organisational spirit, both sides will contribute to the improvement of relations between the two countries and that we will make good use of the great bridge that connects us, i.e. the Albanian community in Greece and the Greek ethnic minority in Albania. 

During the recent visit of the Greek Prime Minister to Dervitsani, among other places, in which you accompanied him, very positive remarks were made about the prosperity of Albania, about the prosperity of the Greek ethnic minority and about the European perspective of your country. All of these are intertwined. The year before last, we celebrated the 40th anniversary of our country's accession to the European Union. From the Cohesion Fund alone, Prime Minister, and from the agricultural programmes, Greece has benefited approximately 200 billion euros over these 40 years. Therefore, you are quite right to pursue your European integration and Greece rightly so stands by your side in this, and the two communities, the Greek ethnic minority and the Albanian community in Greece, are a great bridge of understanding and cooperation for both countries.

With these thoughts, with the certainty of improving our relations, with the certainty of improving the protection of the rights of the Greek ethnic minority and improving the standard of living in Albania, I welcome you to the National Parliament of Greece. I hope, Prime Minister, that our improvisations, but also our more diligent and more organised foresight in our foreign policy, will henceforth benefit the relations between the two countries".

Edi Rama, Prime Minister of Albania:

"Thank you very much for the hospitality. It is a special pleasure for me to be in Athens today. Our relations are very good and are constantly improving. Both sides have the strong desire to strengthen and enhance our bilateral relations. And, undoubtedly, it is our two peoples who are at the basis of these relations, and the strong bridges that connect us are the Greek citizens living in Albania and the Albanian citizens living in Greece. Thank you very much".



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