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Albania opposition protests again, calls for new election

A protester blows a plastic horn during an anti-government rally in Tirana, Sunday June 2, 2019. Albanian opposition supporters have mounted a new anti-government protest asking for fresh elections, despite repeated calls from the western powers. (AP Photo/Hektor Pustina)

TIRANA, Albania — Thousands of Albanian opposition supporters have taken to the streets again to demand new elections despite repeated calls from Western powers to sit down for talks.

The centre-right Democratic Party-led opposition supporters gathered Sunday at the main government building accusing centre-left Socialist Party Prime Minister Edi Rama of corruption and links to organized crime. They want Rama to resign and an interim Cabinet to take the country to an early parliamentary election.

Rama’s Socialists say the opposition is hurting the country’s image as European Union leaders decide whether to launch full membership negotiations with Tirana.

The EU, U.S. and other Western institutions have asked the opposition to avoid violence and to hold talks instead to resolve the country’s political deadlock.

The Associated Press