AA: Intense negotiations continue until all issues are closed

Negotiations for expanding the SDSM-led ruling coalition are nearing the end, according to the Alliance for Albanians. They said working groups were having intense discussions Monday which were expected to decide the ministerial posts that would go to members of their party.

According to AA sources, it has already been decided that members of their party will get the top posts at the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Justice, which were until now in the hands of Alternativa and SDSM. They said the third ministerial post was still being negotiated.

“The working groups are intensely working to close the issues that remain on the negotiating table,” the sources told MIA, noting that talks would continue until agreement was reached on all topics of discussion.

SDSM leader Dimitar Kovachevski and AA leader Arben Taravari are to announce the official decision after the final meeting, which has not yet been scheduled but it is expected to happen soon.

Previously, sources from the AA told MIA their priority would be the fight against organized crime and corruption. This is why, they stressed, they wanted to have their people in all directorates, institutions, and inspectorates related to these areas, such as the Public Revenue Office, the Customs Administration, and the police.

According to them, they did not necessarily want to have their people get the top posts in these institutions, but instead to have their party members work in the institutions at different levels.

Taravari, after meeting with Prime Minister Kovachevski on Feb. 1, said it was not guaranteed that the Alliance for Albanians would join the government although chances of it happening were high.

He said some 90 percent of their objectives were aligned and personnel discussions would follow. One of the ministries he said they had “the best personnel for” is the Ministry of Health.

Kovachevski also said they were largely in agreement with the AA and talks were continuing on all possible aspects of cooperation.

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