The accession of Albania to NATO took place in 2009. Albania's relationship with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) began in 1992 when it joined the North Atlantic Cooperation Council. In 1994, it entered NATO's Partnership for Peace, which began Albania's process of accession into the alliance. In 1999, the country received a Membership Action Plan (MAP). The country received an invitation to join at the 2008 Bucharest Summit and became a full member on April 1, 2009.
Albania was among the first Eastern European countries to join the Partnership for Peace programme. Albanian politicians considered admission to NATO a top priority. Since 1992 Albania has been extensively engaged with NATO and has maintained its position as a stability factor and a strong ally of USA and EU in the troubled and divided region of the Balkans. In addition to the political will, the overwhelming majority of 95% of the Albanian population supported NATO membership.
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“When one walks, one is brought into touch first of all with the essential relations between ones physical powers and the character of the country; one is compelled to see it as its natives do. Then every man one meets is an individual. One is no longer regarded by the whole population as an unapproachable and uninteresting animal to be cheated and robbed.”
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