“Albania and Kosovo have no borders”

The Albanian National Unity Youth, in Kosovo borders with Albania (Nov. 29)

On the occasion of the anniversary of the proclamation of independence of Albania, yesterday, November 28, the youth movement’s unity, celebrated the ‘Flag Day’, organized an action, under of the slogan “There are no borders between Albania and Kosovo.

The event was held at the border with Kosovo and participated in it over a hundred young people placed banner with the slogan “Pa kufi-Kosova është Shqipëri”, “Kosovo and Albania without borders”.

Unfolded, indeed, a huge red flag when the center was the emblem of the Albanian flag.

The aim of this action, as indicated by the Albanian media is to show that there is no point [in there] being the border between the two sides…

The energy of youth is welcomed by the Albanian citizens on both sides of the border.

Albanians also marked Flag Day by going around and taking down the official Kosovo flag and replacing it with the Albanian flag. As one pointed out, the former represents that annoying stuff about multi-ethnicity:

Albanian Flag Day marked in Kosovo (Nov. 30, Source: Beta; Koha Ditore)

On Nov. 28, Kosovo Albanians celebrated National Flag Day. The Kosovo Albanian flag, which is identical to the Albanian national flag, was hoisted in Pristina and other towns on Nov. 27.

In addition to being celebrated as National Flag Day in Kosovo and Independence Day in Albania, Nov. 28 is linked to two other events — the birthday of Adem Jashari, commander of the self-styled Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) and the day when KLA members first revealed themselves in public in Drenica.

Outgoing premier Hashim Thaci, local officials, opposition representatives and citizens visited the Adem Jashari memorial in Prekaz, in Drenica.

Koha Ditore reports that members and sympathizers of Vetëvendosje [”Self-determination” movement] in Gjakova, Ferizaj and Lipjan, on Sunday without any difficulty and without being hindered by any official municipal institution undertook an action to remove the flags of the Republic of Kosovo, placed in poles and pillars in the streets of the cities.

“Today is 28 of November – Flag Day, which symbolizes the national holiday. This flag, which we are removing from poles and pillars placed in the streets, is a multi-ethnicity flag”, said Demokrat Zhubi from Vetëvendosje.

…[T]he Vetëvendosje movement announced on Sunday that police have arrested three of its activists in Lipjan, while they were replacing Kosovo flags with national flags.

Now we go to Flag Day in southern Serbia, as translated from the Serbian newspaper Vecernje Novosti (”Evening News”):

On the building of Bujanovac on Sunday along with the Serbian flag the Albanian was set, despite the fact that our Constitution prohibits in Serbia setting the flag of another country. By this symbolic act, Shaip Kamberi, the mayor of Bujanovac and Jonuz Musliu, president of the Municipal Assembly, marked Flag Day, national holiday of neighboring Albania. This is the third year to do it officially - Kamberi said, adding that this act demonstrated once again that Albanians do not agree with the Serbian decision that the national minorities have no right to display officially symbols that mark their identity.

And from Blic:

Presevo, Bujanovac - Albanian flag was hoisted today at the buildings of municipalities of Bujanovac and Presevo, as part of celebrating the Day of the flag, national holiday of Albania

Albanian flag was hoisted on the building and post office in Bujanovac Veliko Tarnovo and the village center Dobrosin and Konculj.

In the municipality of Presevo, the flag of Albania is featured in several surrounding villages.

“This is the third time that the institutional Albanian flag is placed next to Serbian. In this way we express protest against unfavorable legal position of national minorities in terms of national symbols because the law restricts the right to use symbols that signify our identity,” said Kamberi.

According to him, the law on national minorities specifies that the flag used by the minority must in some detail distinguish it from the flags of countries of origin.

In Kosovo on 28 November, though the Flag Day or the day of independence of Albania in 1942, linked to other events. It is the birthday of the Kosovo Liberation Army commander Adem Jashari, and on this day commemorates the first public appearance of the KLA in Drenica.

[So they’re allowed to celebrate their Serb-killing holidays, but that’s not good enough.]

When asked if he knew what is the position of Serbs living in Albania and to see if they can point out their flag and use their language, Kamberi said that he had no vital information
about it, but that he thinks that the Serbs in Albania can use their own symbols.

I’ve often wondered about that: Are there Serbs in Albania?? And if there are, then if they displayed their national symbols they’d be dead faster than this poor Greek.

Anyway, all this — and still Albanians complain to the EU and U.S. that Serbia doesn’t respect essential human rights of minorities (unlike Muslim-run or Albanian-run societies, right?) And such complaints are always taken “very seriously” by the EU institutions and even more so by the State Dept. Any excuse to put even more pressure on Serbia.

One last report from Greater Albania, Serbia — or Serbia, Greater Albania — from Politika:

Flag Day was marked by the Albanians in Presevo. As the Mayor Mustafa Ragmi said to Beta, Albanians in Presevo have the right to celebrating Flag Day of Albania, like all minorities celebrate holidays.

“We therefore, in addition to the Albanian flag on the municipality, pointed out the slogan that we want it legalized. And that’s the message to officials in Belgrade, and international representatives to help us in this request. I do not see why we could not freely display the flag as we did during the one-party system for 50 years,” said Mustafa.

[It’s because, like most Albanians, Mustafa has no idea what an Albanian is. Once you let them fly their flag officially alongside the state flag, the next thing they do is replace one with the other, as happened in Kosovo and is happening in Macedonia. Apparently, Mustafa is unfamiliar with the Albanian M.O. of taking an arm after being given a hand.]

Rexhepi: We will celebrate as a part of Albania

Deputy Mayor of Presevo, Orhan Rexhepi, told Beta that the Albanians in Presevo will in a couple of years celebrate the 28th November as part of Albania. He added that he “does not care” about what may think the politicians in Belgrade.

“I can say responsibly, with congratulations to all the Albanian people for the holiday, that they would soon celebrate all together,” he said. Asked what he meant by “shortly”, he said, “in a couple of years.”

So there’s the fruition of one “Serbian myth” being celebrated last week, the one about Greater Albania. And here’s another “Serbian myth” actualizing — the one about Albanians posing an Islamic problem to the region — as one Albanian blogger screams, “Stop saying that Albanian Muslims aren’t ‘like that’! We are!”:

Islamic Identity of Albanians - Myth or Reality?!
Ermal BEGA, Tirana-Albania (Nov. 29)

Islamic identity and/or European identity of Albanians, has recently become a pretty big problem among the prominent personalities, academics and researchers of various Albanian territories.

Discussions on this issue are not new to us Albanians who have suffered throughout history, but have come to the surface more often in later times, when for a long time various newspapers, print and broadcast media in Albania and Kosova have opened the debate about whether the Albanians have a Muslim identity (belonging to Islam) or have a European identity (which means you need to be Christian-Catholic-Latin or Greek-Slavic-Orthodox)?

I don’t understand, first of all, why we need to do this kind of debate in vain, considering that Europe and the world at large know very well and very clearly that the majority of the Albanian people are of the Islamic religion, with actions or without them (practicing or not), knowingly or through ignorance (as most of the people who have Albanian Muslim names, but do not have any knowledge about their religion).

Secondly, I fail to understand why this dirty politics is becoming so sneakily anti-Islamic in Albania. Islam is a faith which has never created problems to those who practice it, and nobody has seen anything bad from this faith and from its believers.

[Now, try and figure out if this kind of denial is Islamic in nature, or Albanian. I honestly can’t tell the difference sometimes.]

If denying the Islamic identity of the Albanians, and the fear that as Muslims we can not enter in Europe is the only reason these personalities present, we respond that “fear is a permanent companion of injustice” (W. Shakespeare) , and “courage without reason is just one of the types of fear” (Seneca).

[Well that’s reassuring.]

…In connection with numerous talks and debates that have arisen in the media and the propaganda that allegedly Albanians are secular and have a secular state…I wanted to add a saying of Napoleon Bonaparte, when he saw that boundless liberalism had gone to excess and religion was being trampled upon, he said: “Faith (belief) should exist, because even if there would be no religion (faith), we would need to create one, because only religion can provide the morale and discipline of a nation”, and having said this he made a provision to create a well-equipped clergy.

[I don’t imagine that when Napoleon used the general term “religion” he was referring to the heathen religions that were supposed to be a thing of the past but which Islam is an unfortunate throwback to.]

Germans say: “A professor however learned he is, if he is non-religious (secular) should not even enter in elementary schools let alone in universities.”

The last term is appropriate for those who seek to throw all Albanians in the Christian religion, who until yesterday were attacking Islam and Albanian Muslims in secret, and now we face them as brave hearts through electronic media and who keep asserting again with a tenacity like that of a hog, that Albanians do not belong to an Oriental Muslim identity, but belong to that of European Christians.

The worst is that these personalities, by name, belong to the Islamic faith themselves….