Europe

Germany wants Albanian opposition to end parliament boycott

Germany's foreign minister is calling on Albania's opposition to end a parliamentary boycott, not block the launch of justice reforms and take part in the June parliamentary elections.

Sigmar Gabriel, in Tirana on Monday, said Germany and the European Union could not understand the opposition's request for a caretaker government only weeks before the June 18 elections.

The Democratic Party-led opposition says it will boycott the parliamentary election unless a caretaker government takes the country to the polls. It says the Cabinet will manipulate the vote with drug money, and has declined to negotiate. Since mid-February, its supporters have blocked the main boulevard in Tirana.

Their parliament boycott also is blocking the launch of judicial reform, considered as key to the start of EU membership negotiations with Brussels.