Albanian opposition parties on Saturday rallied in Tirana, calling for the government’s resignation and an early parliamentary election.
Thousands of opposition supporters from around the country showed up at Tirana’s main Martyrs of the Nation boulevard holding anti-government posters and slogans, throwing flares, firecrackers and other projectiles at police.
Protesters broke through the police cordon at the main entrance of the government building, but did not try to open its doors. Police refrained from using tear gas at the government building but used it when demonstrators tried to push them at the parliament building.
Scores of protesters stayed at the building stairs, shouting slogans against the prime minister.
The center-right Democratic Party-led opposition accuses the leftist Socialist Party government of Prime Minister Edi Rama of being corrupt and linked to organized crime, which the government denies.
The leader of the Democrats, Lulzim Basha, called for “an immediate political rotation,” asking for a transitory Cabinet without Rama and demanding that an early election be held.
Basha urged supporters to keep up daily protests.
In previous protests since mid-February, opposition supporters have repeatedly tried to enter the parliament or government buildings and police have responded with tear gas and water cannon.