PM Netanyahu Meets with Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama
Photo by Kobi Gideon, GPO 

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu this morning at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem, hosted Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama. The two men signed a joint declaration of friendship to mark the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries, a medical research cooperation agreement between hospitals and an agreement on the employment of diplomats’ spouses.
 
After the signings, the two leaders held a private meeting followed by an expanded meeting in which Albanian Prime Minister Rama said that his country was interested in strengthening relations with Israel and was interested in bilateral cooperation in security, cyber, water, energy and innovation. He noted that Albania would be pleased to learn from Israel’s successes in innovation and added that he would like to encourage Israeli businesspeople to invest in Albania.
 
Prime Minister Netanyahu said that Israel was interested in strengthening bilateral relations and in increasing trade and cooperation with Albania in various fields. He thanked his Albanian counterpart for Albania’s support for Israel in the IAEA vote several months ago.
 
Albanian Prime Minister Rama invited Prime Minister Netanyahu to visit Albania and together with him dedicate a site now being built about Albania’s efforts to rescue its Jewish community during the Holocaust.
 
Prime Minister Netanyahu:
 
"Prime Minister Rama, welcome to Jerusalem. You have a towering presence and a distinguished delegation. We’re very happy to see you. We know that Albania is a good friend of Israel. We’re celebrating now 25 years of our relations. We know that he people of Albania are not merely good friends today of the people of Israel but in the crucial period of the Holocaust they stood shoulder to shoulder with the Jewish people persecuted in Europe. I think Albania is the only country whose Jewish population during the Holocaust actually grew because of the refuge and the sanctuary and the friendship and courage showed by the people of Albania. We never forget our friends, and we appreciate that display of humanity, civility and courage in our darkest hours.
 
It’s therefore a particular pleasure for me to expand our relations today in many concrete areas, and they are legion, they cover a very broad spectrum. They cover trade, they cover investments, they cover energy, water. We all need water to live and Israel has some experience in dealing with water resources. They cover the questions of security, which occupies and preoccupies countries everywhere. Today there is a looming terrorism that threatens all of us. Israel fights terrorism day in, day out. Israel never lets down its guard. But I think increasingly countries today understand that the problems of international security are intertwined. Terrorism threatens everyone. It is international and the response to it should be international.
 
These are some of the areas that we’ll be discussing. We’ll be signing some agreements to consolidate and reflect our friendship and it’s in this spirit of friendship that I welcome you, Prime Minister, Edi, to Jerusalem."