7 June 2019 President Meta remarks at the 24th Berlin Gathering, during the Breakfast Prayers: “Seek peace and pursue it”
Dear Mr. Weiler, Mr. Rützel,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I want to first thank our great friends in the German Bundestag, and particularly the organizing committee, for bringing us all together here in Berlin. I know well, just as you do, how committed and tireless they are in strengthening and enlarging this tradition of good friendships and shared faith in God.
Few days ago, Chancellor Angela Merkel, won the hearts of graduating Harvard students, in a most honest and thoughtful address on the present, the future and the frightening world that the young generation inherits.
Just as those with a real sense of history, I fully empathized with her account, and particularly with her call that “Anything that seems to be set in stone or inalterable can indeed change.”
Positive change will always come about, as people are in constant pursuit of peace, be that individual, community or global peace.
We have built partnerships, alliances, world and regional organizations, to maintain peaceful order. But none of these constructions will survive without the embedded values and principles that glue together such commitment.
“Democracy is in the heart of NATO”, said NATO Secretary General during his last visit to Albania, whereas pro-European parties still scored a big win in the last European elections.
We in the Western Balkans look up to NATO and European Union, as the best guarantees to the peaceful, stable and prosperous order, both within and in our region.
Albanians pray that our neighbor, North Macedonia becomes NATO’s 30th member as soon as possible and it fully deserves it after the historical achievement.
We always considered NATO’s extended frontier in the region as an asset in pursuing peace for our community of people, who for a long time considered impossible living with each-other.
We must be vigorous in protecting this partnership, in strengthening the Trans-Atlantic alliance, in upholding the core values that bond especially our young people.
United States and EU interaction and cooperation were vital to succeeding a breakthrough Agreement between neighboring Greece and North Macedonia. I am hopeful and pray that same determination and coordination will enable a forward-looking final agreement also between Kosova and Serbia.
The countries of the Balkan region are firmly anchored in EU accession processes. The strong popular support for these processes does not spring from the illusion of border changes, but from the quest for better standards in good-governance, rule of law, economic growth, and social cohesion.
It is our responsibility as leaders to ensure implementation of such standards at home, remaining truthful to commitments pledged to our peoples and to our partners.
I must share with you that my fellow countrymen and women look forward to opening accession negotiations with the European Union as soon as possible, hopefully this month, just as I assure you that they remain as demanding to their government and representatives to fulfil its duties and obligations.
Although a modest country, we do not escape our larger responsibilities in relation to a peaceful global order.
Albania remains fully committed in the global alliances against terrorism, violent extremism and radicalism. We care about climate change and have pledged to the Paris Agreement. We will continue to cooperate intensively with our partners within all international and regional organizations to protect and promote human rights, govern migration, and to improve the security architecture at large.
Next year, Albania, for the very first time, will be the Chairman-in-Office of the OSCE, and will make every effort to reflect the best image of its values, as well as to implement joint priorities for a more secure and prosperous OSCE area. I pray that we succeed in this challenging undertaking.
Albania takes pride in its religious tolerance and harmony, which is well-known already. Communities of all religions have always been united, throughout our history, committed to safeguarding peace and harmony.
The leaders of religious communities have done a tremendous job to consolidate this national bond, united in love towards each-other and to our country.
Recently the Christian and Muslim communities through their Inter-denominational Council appealed for national wisdom, unity, and genuine dialogue, bringing to an end the divisive politics troubling the country. I humbly invite you to join our prayers, for my country to find its way to a well-deserved stability, prosperity and its irreversible European future.
I also pray that the EU and NATO, which secured peace, stability and freedom for this continent, continue to do well and prosper, as solid peacekeepers for generations to come.
I pray that the people of the Balkans, who have gone through horrible sufferings, find peace through coexistence and living together towards European future, as the only way of living their children deserve.
“The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry”.