December 19, 2014

Greece technically still at war with Albania

Because of un-abolished war law Albanian Cham minority, who were expelled by Athens during World War II, can not claim back confiscated property worth hundreds of millions.

ANKARA (AA) - Albanian President Bujar Nishani asks his Greek counterpart, Karlos Papulias on Monday to abolish the law of war with Albania which has left the two neighbors technically at war for the last seventy years.

Albanians say that because of this law ethnic Albanians, referred to as Albanian Cham minority (from the Chameria area of Greek territory) who were expelled by Athens during World War II, could not claim back confiscated property in Greece worth hundreds of millions dollars.

Members of the Albanian Cham minority protested in front of Albanian presidency while the two presidents were meeting.

"I asked the Greek Parliament to abrogate the law of war which is still in power because it is in contrary with article 15 of the Treaty of Friendship," Albanian President Bujar Nishani said during a joint press conference with Papulias.

Greek parliament declared war on Albania back in 1940 (WWII), when Albania was under Italian occupation. Greek government removed the law by government decree in 1987 but the law was never abolished by Greek Parliament. Albania and Greece are two neighbor NATO countries but technically still at war. Albanian Cham minority claims hundreds of million dollars of property were confiscated by Athens under this law.

The President of Greece, Karlos Papulias officially visited Albania on November 3-5, 2013 and was invited by the President of the Republic of Albania, Bujar Nishani.

"Maritime delimitation between the two countries remains an issue to be resolved", President Nishani said, adding that "Albania is ready to resolve this issue in accordance with International Law".

JTW/ Anadolu Agency

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