Israel opens embassy in Albania

Aug. 2, 2012 at 7:35 AM
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JERUSALEM, Aug. 2 (UPI) -- Israel opened an embassy in Tirana, the capital of the predominantly Muslim country Albania, officials said.

Israel's Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman traveled to Tirana Wednesday to inaugurate the embassy, marking the 10th new mission to open since he took office in 2009, The Jerusalem Post said Thursday.

"The opening of each new diplomatic mission is a festive occasion for the State of Israel, the citizens of Israel and for Israeli diplomacy. This is especially true with regard to a country such as Albania, which has a Muslim population of 70 percent and is a NATO member," the Times of Israel quoted Lieberman saying.

Until now Albanian issues were handed by a non-resident ambassador, the Times said.

During his visit, Lieberman met with Albanian President Bujar Nishani, Prime Minister Sali Berisha, Foreign Minister Edmond Panariti and opposition leader Edi Rama.

Last year, Lieberman visited Albania, the first trip made by an Israeli foreign minister to the country in 17 years, the Post said.

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