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Albania: Government#

Country nameconventional long form: Republic of Albania
conventional short form: Albania
local long form: Republika e Shqiperise
local short form: Shqiperia
former: People's Socialist Republic of Albania
CapitalTirana (Tirane) Tirana (Tirane)
geographic coordinates: 41 19 N, 19 49 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
Administrative divisions12 counties (qarqe, singular - qark); Berat, Diber, Durres, Elbasan, Fier, Gjirokaster, Korce, Kukes, Lezhe, Shkoder, Tirane, Vlore
Constitutionseveral previous; latest approved by parliament 21 October 1998, adopted by popular referendum 22 November 1998, promulgated 28 November 1998; amended 2007, 2008, 2012 (2014)
Executive branchchief of state: President of the Republic Bujar NISHANI (since 24 July 2012)
head of government: Prime Minister Edi Rama (since 10 September 2013)
cabinet: Council of Ministers proposed by the prime minister, nominated by the president, and approved by parliament
elections: president is elected by the Assembly for a five-year term and is eligible for a second term (a candidate needs a three-fifths majority of the Assembly's 140 votes (84 votes) in one of the first three rounds of voting or a simple majority in round four or five to become president; up to five rounds of voting are held, if necessary); four election rounds held between 30 May and 11 June 2012 (next election to be held in 2017); prime minister appointed by the president on the proposal of the party or coalition of parties that has the majority of seats in the Assembly
election results: Bujar NISHANI elected president on fourth round of voting; Assembly vote (for first three rounds three-fifths majority, 84 votes, required; fourth round, a simple majority of votes is required): Bujar NISHANI 73 votes
Flag descriptionred with a black two-headed eagle in the center; the design is claimed to be that of 15th-century hero George Kastrioti SKANDERBEG, who led a successful uprising against the Turks that resulted in a short-lived independence for some Albanian regions (1443-78); an unsubstantiated explanation for the eagle symbol is the tradition that Albanians see themselves as descendants of the eagle; they refer to themselves as "Shqipetare," which translates as "sons of the eagle"
Independence28 November 1912 (from the Ottoman Empire)
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Constitutional Court (consists of 9 judges, including a chairman); Court of Cassation (consists of 14 judges, including the chief justice)
judge selection and term of office: Constitutional Court judges appointed by the president with the consent of the Assembly to serve single 9-year terms; chairman elected by the People's Assembly for single 3-year term; Court of Cassation judges, including the chairman, appointed by the president with the consent of the Assembly to serve single, 9-year terms)
subordinate courts: Courts of Appeal; Courts of First Instance
Legal systemcivil law system except in the northern rural areas where customary law known as the "Code of Leke" prevails
Legislative branchunicameral Assembly or Kuvendi (140 deputies elected through a regional proportional system from multi-name lists of parties or party coalitions according to their respective order; elected for a four-year term)
elections: last held on 23 June 2013 (next to be held in 2017)
election results: percent of vote by party- PS 41.36%, PD 30.63%, LSI 10.46%, PR 3.02%, PDIU 2.61%, other 11.92%; seats by party- PS 65, PD 50, LSI 16, PDIU 4, PR 3, other 2
note: seats by parliamentary group as of March 2014 - ASHE 85, APMI 55
International organization participationBSEC, CD, CE, CEI, EAPC, EBRD, EITI (candidate country), FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, NATO, OAS (observer), OIC, OIF, OPCW, OSCE, PCA, SELEC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
National holidayIndependence Day, 28 November (1912) also known as Flag Day
Political pressure groups and leadersConfederation of Trade Unions of Albania or KSSH (Kol NIKOLLAJ)
Omonia (Vasil BOLLANO)
Union of Independent Trade Unions of Albania or BSPSH (Gezim KALAJA)
Political parties and leadersAlliance for Employment, Welfare, and Integration or APMI (coalition of 25 centrist and center-right parties) (Sali BERISHA): Christian Democratic Party or PDK (Nard NDOKA)
Democratic Party or PD (Lulzim BASHA)
Movement for National Development of LZHK (Dashamir SHEHI)
Party for Justice, Integration and Unity or PDIU (Shpetim IDRIZI)
Republican Party or PR (Fatmir MEDIU)
Alliance for a European Albania or ASHE (coalition of 37 opposition parties from far left to right wing) (Edi RAMA): Christian Democratic Party of PKD (Mark FRROKU)
Socialist Movement for Integration or LSI (Ilir META)
Socialist Party or PS (Edi RAMA)
Union for Human Rights Party or PBDNJ (Vangjel DULE)
other parties: New Democratic Spirit or FRD (Bamir TOPI)
Red and Black Alliance (Kreshnik SPAHIU)
note: only the major parties of each coalition are listed
Suffrage18 years of age; universal
Government typeparliamentary democracy
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador Gilbert GALANXHI (since 5 January 2011)
chancery: 1312 18th Street NW, 4th Floor, Washington, DC 20036
telephone: (1) (202) 223-4942
FAX: (1) (202) 628-7342
consulate(s) general: New York
National anthemname: "Hymni i Flamurit" (Hymn to the Flag)
lyrics/music: Aleksander Stavre DRENOVA/Ciprian PORUMBESCU
note: adopted 1912
International law organization participationhas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
National symbol(s)double-headed eagle
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador Alexander ARVIZU (since 10 November 2010)
embassy: Rruga e Elbasanit, 103, Tirana
mailing address: US Department of State, 9510 Tirana Place, Dulles, VA 20189-9510
telephone: (355) (4) 2247-285
FAX: (355) (4) 2232-222