The funeral of an ethnic Greek who was shot dead by Albanian police last week got underway at the village of Bularat in southern Albania, with numerous people travelling from Greece in busses to attend the service.
The death of 35-year-old Konstantinos Katsifas has flared up tensions between Tirana and Athens.
Albanian news portal Faxweb reported earlier that two Greeks were arrested for the possession of clothes with paramilitary symbols and slogans that fuel hatred and banned another 13 people from entering the country from Greece, saying there were indications they would attempt to disrupt the funeral service.
Greece’s Foreign and Civil Protection Ministries have appealed to those attending the funeral to show restraint and respect towards his family, according to sources from the two ministries, cited by state-run news agency ANA-MPA.
In an attempt to ease tensions, Archbishop Anastasios of Albania called on all sides to tone down “irresponsible noise,” and show respect for the other side.