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Press Release – Cyprus Presidency fully supportive of Albania’s European integration
03.12.2012, 17:05 (CET)
The European perspective of Albania was the main topic of discussion during the working visit of Albania’s Minister on Integration, Mrs Μajlinda Bregu to Cyprus, between December 2 and 3. Mrs Bregu’s visit came after an invitation by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Erato Kozakou-Marcoullis, under her competence as President of the General Affairs Council (GAC) of the EU on matters of enlargement.

The two ministers, accompanied by their delegations, met this morning to exchange views and assess developments as regards the European perspective of Albania, particularly in view of the conclusions on enlargement that will be the topic of discussion of the General Affairs Council of December 11.  Following the meeting, the two Ministers signed a Memorandum of Understanding between Cyprus and Albania for cooperation in the field of European integration.

In statements to the press following the meeting, Dr. Marcoullis welcomed Mrs. Bregu to Cyprus, and reiterated that EU enlargement to the Western Balkans has been one of the main priorities of the Cyprus Presidency. 

“This was evident by the fact that my first visits after the assumption of the Presidency of the Council of the EU by the Republic of Cyprus were in the Western Balkans, which included a trip to Tirana on July 31,” said the Cypriot Foreign Affairs Minister.

Dr. Marcoullis reiterated that the Cyprus Presidency is fully supportive of the European integration of Albania and has been encouraged by the dedication of the Albanian government to a swift process of necessary reforms that will bring the country closer to the EU.  

“The Memorandum of Understanding in the field of European Integration which we have just signed constitutes further proof of the commitment of the government of the Republic of Cyprus to assist Albania in its European path,” stated Dr. Marcoullis.

The Albanian Minister on Integration congratulated Cyprus, and Dr. Marcoullis in particular, for a successful Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Thanking the Minister of Foreign Affairs for the support of the Cyprus Presidency to Albania’s process of European integration, Mrs. Bregu emphasised that the Albanian government is committed to proceeding with necessary reforms.

“This process is taken with seriousness and sincerity,” stressed Mrs. Bregu, adding that Albania welcomes the “strict and fair judgment” of the European Union, and understands the need to stick to a merits-based approach.

December General Affairs Council

The upcoming December General Affairs Council meeting, which Dr. Marcoullis will be presiding, will address the Commission’s recommendation on granting candidate status to Albania subject to completion of key measures in the areas of judicial and public administration reform, as well as revision of parliamentary rules of procedure. 

“As we have declared from the very start of our Presidency, we will be presiding over all Council formations as an honest broker, aiming at achieving the best possible outcome arising from the prerogative and unanimous decision of the 27 Council members,” stressed Dr. Marcoullis.  

She encouraged Mrs. Bregu to continue efforts for obtaining candidate status, for the benefit of all generations of Albanians and concluded:

“We trust that this is an achievable target which will not only integrate Albania in the European structures, but also aims at enhancing regional cooperation and good neighbourly relations.”

Communications Officer
Charis Christodoulidou

Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Email: cchristodoulidou@mfa.gov.cy
Telefon: +357 22401165

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