Albania gov't makes concessions on reform, key to EU talks

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Albania's ruling Socialists say they will approve anything the opposition Democratic Party wants in a judicial reform package, fundamental to ensuring the launch of the membership negotiations with the European Union, if it's also agreed on with Brussels and the U.S.

The U.S. and EU, directly involved in the two-year reform process, have failed to convince the Democrats, which have said Western officials only should monitor and not actively participate in any decision of a new vetting panel for judges and prosecutors.

Prime Minister Edi Rama on Friday also offered new talks with Democrats' leader Lulzim Basha. The ruling Socialists need support from some opposition members in the 140-seat Parliament to endorse the reforms.

Albania's judiciary is considered too corrupt to allow the country to join the 28-nation EU.