Interview of Defence Minister Kodheli to “Top Channel” TV

Mrs. Minister, there is an opened debate and the President of the Republic stresses the fact that the new bill on the chain of command violates the rights of the President. Does it infringe his rights or not?

Absolutely not, never and in any case!
I am here to assure the public and the institution of the President that, in any article of the bill, which will be restructured in the light of all reforms and restructuring that should be made to legal basis, on which the activity of the Armed Forces, Ministry of Defence, Government and Institution of the President is based on, there is no violation of the constitutional powers of the President of the Republic. Personally, especially as Minister of Defence, the Government and Prime Minister Rama are more than ever determined to respect the constitutionality of any law that we will be considered by the Alsident’s image focusing his constitutional obligation only on those rights and obligations the Constitution gives to the President of the Republic.banian Parliament, in order to respect the independent institutions, and with this bill we will further push what I’m asserting, we will assess the Pre

Mrs. Minister, there is an opened debate and the President of the Republic stresses the fact that the new bill on the chain of command violates the rights of the President. Does it infringe his rights or not?

Absolutely not, never and in any case!
I am here to assure the public and the institution of the President that, in any article of the bill, which will be restructured in the light of all reforms and restructuring that should be made to legal basis, on which the activity of the Armed Forces, Ministry of Defence, Government and Institution of the President is based on, there is no violation of the constitutional powers of the President of the Republic. Personally, especially as Minister of Defence, the Government and Prime Minister Rama are more than ever determined to respect the constitutionality of any law that we will be considered by the Albanian Parliament, in order to respect the independent institutions, and with this bill we will further push what I’m asserting, we will assess the President’s image focusing his constitutional obligation only on those rights and obligations the Constitution gives to the President of the Republic.

Mrs. Minister, has there been prior consultation with the Institution of the President on this bill, bearing in mind the fact that, the Head of the State is Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces?

I want to assure you on something. At the time when I was in opposition, we have rightly claimed in more than one occasion that the Armed Forces were mismanagement, the public property available to the Armed Forces also, the parallel structures or the other ones that exceeded the legal framework too, while the Armed Forces, with all its structures, have the obligation to defend and ensure the integrity of the Republic of Albania and the safety of its citizens; I still affirm this claim and I assure you that I will do everything possible, jointly with the Government, to bring the Armed Forces in the right path, with honour based on its obligations. Today, the Ministry of Defence, the Armed Forces, Albania is a NATO member, therefore, the obligations arising from being a NATO member are best reflected in the whole package of changes that will come later. Thus, I want to share with you something very specific. The Property Management in the Armed Forces will be in accordance with all procedures, legal and constitutional aspects on which the law is based today. So, personally, in all cases, during the discussions made on this bill, I have been clear and categorical that, this management, as it is made today by the President of the Republic, will continue to be so. Certainly, bills are drafts to be discussed, and it was sent to the interested institutions affected by this bill. To the Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Interior, General Prosecutor Office, the intelligence services institutions, to the President, Parliament, so, all the institutions affected by this bill are familiar with the our proposal. This is a process and it ends only when adopted by the Parliament of Albania. There is just a preliminary draft. I do not know why it has been made public and to be honest with you, at the moment when it is under discussion; nevertheless, as it is actually, it is ok. It is important that I am here to assure you that: there is respect of constitutionality and its inviolability, I’m asserting, with regard to relations of the Ministry of Defence, Prime Minister with the Parliament, and surely with the President of the Republic.

Mrs. Kodheli, why are these changes, you seek to doing through this bill, necessary?

First, in 2009 Albania joined NATO and there has been no reflection on the laws the Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces use. One law dates back to 2004 and the other one in 2007, old ones in the Government opinion. We are here to restart a reform, which did not start and did not finish with all the transformations made within the Armed Forces. What is most important, today the Armed Forces have another operativeness and I think that at a certain moment, in quite disturbing situation such as the daily situations in geopolitics: the Ukraine-Russia conflict; Crimea; conflicts such as the conflict in Syria; current conflicts as in Afghanistan and so on, create a need for emergency response by the Armed Forces, of those unities that must respond to cases of collective defence and it is for the benefit of work, for the quick response we should provide to NATO structures that are also leading structures for the Armed Forces; we may not have the luxury to wait for a response, as in the case of presidential decree, although requests are made similarly to a case where the Minister of Defence has asked to the President a release decree since the end of November 2013, and yet it is not approved, even though late April is coming. This cannot be the action of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Albania, a NATO member country; it must have another intensity; another activation of all Armed Forces, surely without infringing in any case the constitutionality that is definitely, the fundamental law upon which the Albanian State is based.

Today, at the government meeting it was adopted the bill for the Military Intelligence Service. What’s new, what do you want to regulate with this bill?

In my opinion, it is something recognized when we were in opposition, there has been an excess of powers by the institution of military intelligence, an excess that led to highly illegal actions. Today, it is an activity under investigation by the General Prosecutor Office and you all know about it. The important thing of the bill is that, it confines the activity of this service, based on the Constitution which defines how the activity should be and its focus on the Armed Forces, Ministry of Defence and obviously on those services or actions required by counterpart agencies, whether of NATO, EU or of our partners, with which Albania has bilateral relations. Always focused on the security this service should provide within the Armed Forces and Ministry of Defence, throughout its chain of command. This is a supplementary and complementary service with other intelligence services, but always focused in this direction. This is a thing which must be perceived and I believe it will be so, and I am convinced that the majority of you think the same way and we will have maximum support for the law of Army’s Intelligence Service, as well as for the bills being discussed as part of the legal changes package concerning the Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces, always focused on the constitutional obligations these services and institutions have, without exceeding them abusively, in the area in which these services operate.



Butrinti and Oriku exercise with SNMCMG2 flagship Saturday, 25 August 2018Our Naval Force ships of Butrinti and Orikum conducted a three-day Joint - Exercise at the estuary of Vjosa - Gram and Vlora Bay,...
Prime Minister Rama announced NATO investment in Kuçova Air Base Saturday, 04 August 2018Prime Minister Rama announced via Facebook, the NATO investment in Kuçova Air Base...
Minister Xhaçka visits SHAPE: More troops to send on NATO missions Friday, 01 June 2018Defense Minister Olta Xhaçka paid an official visit to the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE)...
Stoltenberg-Xhaçka meeting during NATO's ministerial, appreciated the Albaniain contribution to peacekeeping missions 14 February 2018Defence Minister Olta Xhaçka held a special meeting with NATO Secretary General...
Albanian patrol boat concludes navy’s first NATO tour 24 November 2017The Albanian Navy’s ALS ORIKU patrol boat on Wednesday (22 November 2017) wrapped up a full year of operations with NATO’s Standing Maritime Group 2 (SNMG2)...
Albania cleans up war graves after decades of neglect 15 November 2017Albania has launched a nationwide drive to renovate the long-neglected cemeteries of its war dead in the run-up to 29 November...
Military Committee Conference of NATO ChoDs was concluded 17 September 2017NATO Military Committee Conference, which was held for the first time in our country, closes its formal proceedings...
Chiefs of Defence provide direction and guidance on key NATO priorities 17 September 2017General Petr Pavel, Chairman of the NATO Military Committee, opened the Military Committee Conference by thanking Albania...
Opening remarks by Prime Minister Edi Rama's at the start of the NATO Military Committee Conference 16 September 2017It was not until long ago that many of you here were seen as the “very bad guys” in this country. But now times have changed and today you are the “best guys”...
Opening remarks by General Petr Pavel at the start of the NATO Military Committee Conference 16 September 2017The Alliance is grateful for Albania’s contributions to our shared security and your continued involvement in our Mission and Operation...
Interview with General Petr Pavel, Chairman of the NATO Military Committee 15 September 2017Interview with General Petr Pavel, Chairman of the NATO Military Committee for Albanian Military Magazine.
The Ushtar Eagle has landed September 2017The UK’s NATO ally Albania hosted over 200 RAF Reserves and Regulars in numerous locations around the country as they trained together developing operational teamwork and friendships on Exercise Ushtar Eagle 17...
Albanian-British Exercise "Soldier Eagle 17" 14 September 2017In the framework of joint training between Armed Forces of Albania and Armed Forces of United Kingdom...
Women at War - 100 years of women on the front line September 2017In a year that sees combat roles within the UK military routinely opened to women, the Royal Navy, British Army and Royal Air Force (RAF) are celebrating the centenary of women serving at the forefront of conflict...
NATO Annual Report 2016 13 March 2017Secretary General’s Annual Report sets out priorities to shape 'Future NATO'...
Defence Directive 2017 March 2017The Directive of Defence for the year 2017 bases on the goals of strategic documents for security and defense, and on fundamental documents of NATO and EU...
Join AAF as an active soldier/seaman April 2017AAF requires the recruited personnel to have the highest qualities for serving in the Armed Forces. AAF will recruit professional soldiers with necessary knowledge in accordance with work requirements...