Albania will not become a massive host country for emigrants

The National Security Commission reviewed the draft law "On the ratification of the agreement between the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Albania and the government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, on the readmission of persons and the protocol implementing the agreement" on Monday.

Deputy interior minister Andi Mahila, who attended the meeting, said the agreement with the UK is not a new agreement, but a renewal of what was done in 2003.

"The agreement has been proposed by the British government in the context of its exit from the European Union. Such a bilateral agreement has existed since 2003, but international developments and migration dynamics on a global scale have made it necessary to renew this legal instrument in the field of readmission," he said.

According to the deputy minister, the agreement provides for the subject of readmission applications categories of citizens: citizens of the contracting parties, that is Albanian citizens and British and Northern Irish citizens, third country nationals, stateless persons.

Mahila also published statistics on the repatriation of Albanian citizens in recent years. He said that “in 2017, 15 repatriation operations were carried out and 680 citizens were repatriated. In 2018, 19 re-admission operations were performed (913 citizens), in 2019 there were 4 operations (168 citizens). In 2020, 7 operations were performed due to which 207 citizens were repatriated. In 2021, 13 operations were performed (333 citizens)."

Asked by opposition MPs about the articles published in the British media according to which negotiations are underway to set up a refugee camp in Albania, Mahila said that the connections made are not essential. "This agreement has nothing to do with what is being discussed in the British media. This agreement has existed since 2003. This agreement exists with all EU countries."

Mahila stressed that there is no possibility for Albania to become a host country for a large number of emigrants. / Argumentum.al