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THE WEEK AHEAD

TIRANA : Hermit Turns Host

October 23, 1990

Long locked in a time warp of hard-line Stalinism, Albania emerges from its isolation Wednesday to host a meeting of foreign ministers from the volatile Balkan states.

Tirana's hospitality is aimed at gaining credibility and support for its first, tentative steps toward joining European security accords and establishing diplomatic ties with an outside world it spurned for decades.

The meeting will bring together officials from some of the most troubled nations on the continent in hopes that peaceful solutions can be found for the conflicts threatening civil war and economic collapse in the historically fractious region. Attending will be representatives from Albania, Bulgaria, Greece, Romania, Turkey and Yugoslavia.

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