Albania’s Socialist Prime Minister Edi Rama has won Monday a second term in power, near final results showed Tuesday, putting him in the driver’s seat for potential talks on his nation joining the EU. Albania, one of Europe’s poorest nations, has been an official candidate for EU accession since 2014 and Rama aims to open negotiations by year’s end.
The Socialist Movement for Integration (LSI), traditionally the kingmaking party in Albanian politics, was on track to win 15 percent of the vote.
Media reports say 52-year-old Rama, an artist and former Tirana mayor who took power in 2013, seemed likely to secure an absolute majority of 74 seats in the 140-seat parliament, allowing the Socialists to govern alone. Voter turnout, at less than 50 percent, was one of the lowest in an Albanian election since the fall of communism in the early 1990s.—Agencies