EU urges Albania to start judicial reform

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The European Union has called on Albanian authorities to pursue judicial reform swiftly as an essential precursor to talks on EU membership.

The EU spoke out after Albania’s constitutional Court on Thursday turned down an opposition request to block a law that requires background vetting of judges and prosecutors.

A statement from the EU office in Tirana encouraged Albanian authorities “to start swiftly with the implementation of the evaluation of judges and prosecutors.”

The reform plans, prepared with help from EU and US experts, seek to ensure the political independence of judges and prosecutors and to root out bribery.

The EU wants tangible results before setting any date on membership negotiations.