President talks tough on Cams

A three-day visit by President Costis Stephanopoulos to Albania got off to a chilly start yesterday, when his Albanian counterpart and local media raised the question of properties seized from ethnic Albanians in northern Greece after the end of World War II. Stephanopoulos said that, as far as he was concerned, there is no outstanding bilateral issue concerning the Cams – the name the minority is collectively known by. «Talks between governments are one thing, but personally I consider this a non-existent problem as it refers to a period when conditions were totally different,» he told a press conference held jointly with Albanian President Alfred Moisiu. «If we remember that period, then we must also remember Greece’s [territorial] demands from Albania. How can we be discussing such matters?» Earlier, Moisiu had spoken of a need to solve «problems inherited from the past.» Asked how the two countries could practically improve their relations, Stephanopoulos suggested, among others, «changes in schoolbooks which, mainly in Albania, foster intolerance and irredentism.»