Threats against media outlets and organisations, Tirana, 23/04/2024

    Country AL
    Name and Surname Media organizations
    Gender Group Media organizations
    Date 23/04/2024
    City / Location Tirana
    Type of incident Threats against media outlets and organizations
    By whom By public officials
    Type of media Radio and television print online
    Media name Media organizations
    Was journalist`s association informed Yes

    Prime Minister Edi Rama has referred to certain Albanian media outlets as “sewer pipes” in two separate public responses on 23rd April concerning an investigative program by RAI3 (here and here). The program, aired on Sunday, explored the agreement between Rama and Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni regarding the transfer of migrants from Italy to Albania according to which Italy will build two migrant reception and detention camps in Albania.

    Commenting on the Report Programme of RAI3, Rama expressed his outrage over what he described as a “criminal approach” to journalism, stating, “It has been years since I was last scandalized by this misuse of media freedom. However, I must clarify that I did not have a single heated conversation with the director of RAI3. We only spoke calmly after addressing another falsehood, which had also been reported by La Repubblica (and subsequently retracted) and perpetuated by the sewer pipes in Tirana, where, due to the channel’s inherent nature and mission, the falsehood continued to circulate among many others in their campaign against Albania’s successes.”

    This is not the first time Rama has used derogatory language to describe the media; he has previously labeled them as “rubbish bins.” His anti-media sentiments and discourse have been criticized by civil society, media freedom organizations, and other independent actors highlighting a pattern of contentious interactions with the media.