The Minister of Justice, Ms. Etilda Gjonaj, hosted a delegation of the UK Ministry of Interior, chaired by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Interior, Mr. Philip Rutnam and accompanied by the Ambassador of Great Britain to Albania, Duncan Norman. Strengthening the fight against transnational organized crime and terrorism by exchanging information and supporting reform in the penitentiary system with the aim of increasing internal security were the core issues under discussion.
The Minister of Justice made a briefing of the Albanian Government tangible results achieved in the fight against transnational organized crime assessing it as a serious commitment also within the process of European Union integration.
Minister Gjonaj made also an overview of the progress and results of the Justice Reform so far, with emphasis on the establishment of new institutions such as the Special Prosecution Office and the National Bureau of Investigation, which will create appropriate conditions for prosecuting and investigating criminal offenses of corruption and organized crime at the highest levels of politics and public administration.
The reform of the penitentiary system and the recent measures taken by the Albanian Government to strengthen the prison security system has been another important issue discussed.
Mr. Rutnam expressed the willingness of the British Government to continue with the support of the reform program of the penitentiary system. Speaking about the strengthening of bilateral cooperation in the fight against organized crime, Minister Gjonaj assessed the Memorandum of Cooperation signed between the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Interior and the British Embassy in Tirana as well as the agreement with Eurojust as very important.
Permanent Secretary of the British Interior Ministry praised Albania’s commitment to cooperate with important organizations such as Eurojust, as the fight against organized crime requires faster, more effective action and strengthened transnational co-operation. Permanent Secretary Philip Rutnam assured Minister Gjonaj that the British Government will continue to support for Albania along the deep reforms it has undertaken.