Albanian opposition parties are preparing a new protest on Thursday, after the Democratic Party and the Socialist Movement for Integration resigned their seats in Parliament and are pushing for early elections.
Over the weekend, their protests turned violent as the crowd was attempting to storm the office of Prime Minister Edi Rama.
Albanian police rolled barbed wire around his office this morning to prevent a new incident. More than 1.200 police are deployed in anticipation of the protests.
Meanwhile EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and Commissioner Johannes Hahn condemned the conservative opposition protests as a call to violence.
The decision by the opposition to relinquish their mandates seriously hinders the functioning of democracy in Albania. The Parliament is the place where reforms and relevant developments should be discussed and taken forward, not boycotted. These decisions and acts are counterproductive, go against the democratic choice of Albanian citizens and undermine the progress the country has made on the European Union path, Mogherini and Hahn said.
The opposition parties accuse Rama of ties with criminals, drug runners and rampant corruption, and demand that a caretaker Government is put in place to organize early elections.