On Friday, Marietje Schaake (D66/ALDE), submitted the following question to High Representative Federica Mogherini on the beating of journalist Elvi Fundo in Albania.
On the 8th of March, Elvi Fundo, a journalist for the CityNews news outlet was beaten by unknown assailants and subsequently hospitalised.
On the 9th of March, the OSCE representative for media freedom, Dunja Mijatović condemned the attack, calling for a quick and independent investigation (1). Albania has been a candidate member state since 2014, but the opening of accession negotiations was made dependent on a number of criteria, including improvements in the area of press and media freedoms. Yet there has not been any condemnation of the attack on Mr Fundo by the High Representative (HR) or by Commissioner Hahn.
1. Will the HR, Commissioner or a spokesperson condemn the attack on Mr Fundo, calling for an independent and impartial investigation and take up this issue with Albanian authorities?
2. How does the HR assess the situation of press and media freedom in Albania, given this attack as well as the recent lay-offs of a number of Albanian journalists from mainstream news media?
3. Did the HR bring this situation to the attention of President Tusk and EU leaders meeting in Brussels on March 9th for the EU Council, where the Western Balkans were an item on the agenda?