June 23 (today) will mark the end of the state of emergency in Albania, declared due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the past three months, Albania has been subjected to severe security measures dictated by coronavirus, which have been accompanied by restrictions on freedom of movement, the closure of businesses, schools, public transport, borders, i.e. total quarantine, measures which have recently been relaxed.
The state of emergency had been declared on 24 March, when Albania had 5 victims of COVID-19 and 123 infections. The parliament therefore decided to extend it for two months, until June 23, claiming that a relaxation of the measures would have led to an increase in the number of infected people, (as has happened punctually these days after the openings).
With the prolonged state of emergency, the government would have had more opportunities to react quickly. The opposition had opposed this decision, describing it as a diabolical plan by Prime Minister Edi Rama and his government, to be able to control citizens and do business in the dark with little transparent contracts.
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A few days ago Prime Minister Edi Rama had announced that the government has no plans to extend the state of emergency, but had spoken of a possible scenario in which this state could be extended to some areas, more specifically to coastal cities.
However, it remains to be seen what the decision of the Council of Ministers will be, given that Rama's statements had come at a time when the number of infections was not as worrying as has happened in recent days.
"There is no reason to extend the state of emergency throughout the territory but we are examining the idea of a limited area only on the coast, to have the opportunity during the summer to exercise legislative power in order to contain the spread of the virus in these areas.
There will be no extension for urban areas but only coastal ones, a plan that could be useful for the management of the pandemic for both people and the government, "said Rama.
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