European Federation of Journalists expressed its concern about severe threats
to press freedom and violent attacks against several
journalists in Albania following last week protest in Tirana.
situation in Albania makes it impossible for journalists to work freely," said EFJ President Arne König. "A violent
environment is already a challenge for media professionals, but if the police
and authorities add physical violence and legal abuses, then we end up in an
intolerable situation for journalists. Albanian and foreign public have to right to know what is
happening in the country and it is the role of the authorities to guarantee the
exercise of the profession instead of putting pressure on journalists".
January a Parliamentary Commission set up by the Albanian ruling party demanded
access to the phone records of four Albanian journalists accused of being
"conspirators" in the violent anti-government protest that took place in Tirana
last 21 January, when several journalists were attacked.
Parliamentary Commission has asked to see the
phone records of Filip Cakulli, the director of the investigative programme "Fiks
Fare" on Top-Channel TV; Sokol Balla, the anchor of the popular show "Top-Story"
on Top Channel TV; Mero Baze, the publisher of the daily TemA and Andi
Bushati, the anchor of a show on Vizion Plust TV called "Zone e Lire".
government's decision follows the violent
street in Tirana of 21 January when several
journalists were assaulted and even shot at by the National Guard.
Janina, reporter for Dhekulli newspaper was beaten in the middle of the street
by a policeman who told him "I do not give a damn that you are a journalist".
Fatos Mahmutaj of ABC News was shot at by a
police officer who opened fire from the Prime
Minister's office courtyard: "I saw the fire in his gun barrel, I felt
the impact of the bullet in my head,"
journalists, photojournalist feliks Bilani
and reporter Elton Dono were seriously wounded by police officers.
calls on the Albanian authorities to respect European standards of press
freedom, which include the right for journalists to operate freely, not be
targeted by the police and not be forced to reveal their sources of
The EFJ represents over 260,000 journalists
in 30 countries
For more information contact
the EFJ at +32 2 235.2200