During the Ottoman (Turkish) period
(1468-1912), Albanian culture was suppressed for a long
time. A national renaissance occurred in the latter half
of the 19th century and the foundation was laid for
modern national literature. Since Albania became
independent in 1912, a number of books with patriotic
content were published.
During the communist era (1945–1991), writers and
artists had to reflect the work of creating a socialist
society. After Ramiz Alias took power in 1985, the
rules began to soften. The censorship was not abolished,
but writers were given the opportunity to reveal abuses
committed under the representative of Enver Hoxha's
regime (see Modern History).
Latest population statistics of Albania, including religious profiles and major languages spoken as well as population growth rates in next three decades.
The most well-known Albanian author is Ismail Kadare
(1936–), whose books have been translated into Swedish.
Kadare lived in exile in Paris in the early 1990s but
later split his time between France and Albania. A
well-known novel by the often Nobel-awarded cadre is
The General of the Dead Army (1963). In The
Chronicle of Stone (1971) he depicts life in his
hometown Gjirokastėr during the Second World War.
The cities of Gjirokastėr and Berat in southern
Albania have both been classified by the UN agency
Unesco as a World Heritage Site for their well-preserved
city centers from the Ottoman period.
Albania has rich folk music traditions. In the north,
the long epic is sung to accompany the single stringed
instrument lahuta or the long neck end
ēifteli. Art music also rests largely on folk
Criminals are excluded from public office
Parliament adopts a constitutional amendment to
exclude serious criminals from Parliament and other
public bodies. Persons convicted of, among other things,
murder, rape or genocide should not be able to hold any
public office. Those convicted of corruption are
excluded from state and municipal mandates for 20 years,
while a sentence of no more than two years in prison
leads to a ten-year ban on holding public service.
Support for the search for the victims of communism
The government promises to help in the search for the
remains of the around 6,000 people who were executed or
died in prison camps during the communist period of
1946-1991. The work is done on the initiative of the
International Commission for Missing People (ICMP). The
government is organizing a donor conference to raise
money for the work.
State expenditure cuts
The government cuts state spending by 4 percent to
meet the estimated budget deficit despite significantly
lower revenues than planned. It is above all tax revenue
that does not reach what is budgeted.
Protests against new university team
Parliament adopts a law on state funding of private
universities. The law triggers protests from students
and a number of publicly employed professors who argue
that the law threatens the independence of higher
education and increases the risk of state governance of
the academic world.
Report on deeply rooted corruption
A parliamentary commission writes in a report that
corruption is deeply rooted at all levels of the
judicial system, from police to judges. According to the
report, judges can buy attractive items for up to EUR
300,000. It is the first official confirmation of widely
disseminated information that judges can buy services in
larger cities, where it is easier to take bribes than in
Visit by the Prime Minister of Serbia
Serbia's Prime Minister Aleksandar Vučić visits
Albania, as the first Serbian high politician (see also
Documents from the communist era are opened
Parliament adopts a law that allows transparency in
the personalities established by the Communist-era
security police; A committee shall examine the documents
and, upon request, disclose them to the parties
concerned. Around one fifth of Alban is believed to have
cooperated with the security service Sigurimi and
provided information about acquaintances, colleagues or
relatives who behaved "suspiciously". Persons seeking
public services or candidates for a political assignment
should be able to obtain a certificate from the Review
Committee that they have not cooperated with the secret
Prison for theft in the central bank
Ten former employees of the central bank are
sentenced to imprisonment for between one month and two
years for breach of service obligations in connection
with a theft of just over EUR 5 million from the bank.
They receive mild penalties in exchange for having
pleaded guilty. Whoever has been appointed for the theft
is still facing trial.
Explosion attacks in Tirana
Two explosive charges explode in Tirana, however
without harming people. One is located at a pharmacy
owned by the home minister's father, the other at a
police chief's residence. Prime Minister Rama describes
the killing as terrorist attacks intended to stop the
government's efforts against organized crime. Interior
Minister Saimir Tahiri is leading the work on drug
trafficking, electricity theft and other crime.