NEWS

Property claims are ‘legal problems,’ not national ones

Amid the general hubbub, we have seen more articles and photographs on the Internet in which certain circles try to raise the Cam issue [claims to property in Greece by Cam clan members in southern Albania]. There have been demonstrations in Albania, and in general there is activity that has not gone unnoticed in Greece. In your view, does such an issue exist and, if so, could it develop into a problem in Greek-Albanian relations and for the broader region? As you know, in the 1992-1996 period, this problem was on the agenda of all the discussions between the Greek and Albanian governments. I believe that we managed to make the right response by signing the friendship and cooperation agreement. In line with that agreement, property problems facing Albanian and Greek citizens in Albania and Greece are problems of a judicial, technical character, that is to say, legal problems, and must be resolved on that basis. So the Greek side should not be worried. No. But Greeks and Albanians must know that if the property issue is not examined today, it will be examined tomorrow, at sometime in the future. There is the European Court of Human Rights. So it is better to raise the issues honestly than for problems to arise. Technical committees should be set up to look into the files and come up with answers. The friendship agreement clearly determines the recognition and respect of borders between the two countries. In that respect, neither of the two countries has claims on the other. That has been settled.