Updated; 24-05-2018, 20:28

Albania’s opposition on Thursday boycotted a resolution expressing support for the launch of negotiations on joining the European Union.

Only the governing left-wing Socialist Party voted in support, but the vote did pass. Prime Minister Edi Rama called the opposition’s boycott "an unparalleled act of historic infidelity to the country."

The opposition occupied the parliament’s speaking podium holding a large poster that said "Albania like the whole of Europe, not a government of crime and drugs." Then its lawmakers left the hall, a move it has used repeatedly in the last month.

The opposition has said it wants the talks but accuses the government of having links to crime that hurt the country’s chances. The government denies that.