Albania postpones election by a week to June 25

Albania's political parties have reached a compromise to postpone next month's parliamentary election by a week to June 25 following intensive talks mediated by a senior U.S. official.

After a three-hour meeting that ended at dawn Thursday, Prime Minister Edi Rama of the governing Socialist Party and Lulzim Basha of the main opposition Democratic Party told reporters they had reached a deal.

Hours later, political parties agreed to hold the polls on June 25 instead of June 18.

The agreement included that senior opposition officials monitor the election process. The opposition has boycotted parliament since February, blocking the launch of judicial reforms, and refused to register for the election.

The deal was achieved following intensive mediation this week by European lawmakers, and U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Hoyt Brian Yee and U.S. Ambassador Donald Lu.