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Written by SOT.COM.AL 9 Qershor 2023
The Foreign Policy Committee in the Assembly started hearings on Friday with the candidates for ambassadors proposed by the government, where the names of former deputies of the socialist party and candidates without a diplomatic career stand out.
According to the proposals sent to the parliament by the foreign minister Olta Xhaçka, the commission first heard Meri Kumbe, currently deputy minister of culture, candidate for ambassador to Israel, jurist Zhaklina Peto as a candidate for Montenegro, former socialist MPs, Ervin Bushati, for ambassador to the United States of America and Vasilika Hysi for managing the diplomatic office at the United Nations and other international organizations in Geneva.
The selection of names was met with criticism from the opposition, but especially the two candidates who come from the ranks of the SP, due to their politicization and lack of experience in the field of diplomacy.
"I would like candidates who come from the administration of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who have built a career in diplomacy" - said Dritan Shehi.
Meanwhile, Tomorr Alizoti questioned the political impartiality in the performance of the duties of the diplomatic representative and called the new appointments political "headshots" of Prime Minister Rama. "Foreign policy does not belong to the SP" - he addressed Bushati.
The vice president of the commission, Agron Gjekmarkaj, questioned the integrity of the new appointments. "In diplomacy, without removing any quality name, there is a lot of mediocrity," he said, reminding Bushati that he had been publicly active in the defense of the government and did not offer guarantees for political impartiality as an ambassador.
Bushati replied that he saw the ambassador's duty as a patriotic mission. "I have learned that the main patriotic issues of Albania, outside the doors of politics, always bring us together," he said.
During the session with Vasilika Hysi, the opposition MPs praised her career outside politics as a defender of human rights, which according to them was more useful for the country than the appointment as ambassador.
"Since when DP was in power, you demanded human rights, it would make them more moral now that SP is in power, to put human rights in charge," Alizoti told him.
Hysi said that the appointment as ambassador will not diminish her role for strengthening human rights, as the work she will do is related to international organizations and missions that monitor the implementation of human rights.
In the list of new candidates is Fatmir Velaj, former deputy and advisor to Prime Minister Rama, to head the diplomatic mission in Austria, journalist Mustafa Nano, as well as parallel movements of current consuls or ambassadors in other diplomatic representations.