OF NATIONWIDE RECONCILIATION
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SECOND CONGRESS OF RECONCILIATION MISSIONARIES
ABOUT THE PREVENTION OF BLOOD FEUD
AND OBSERVANCE OF LEGAL STATE
on September 17 2004
second congress of reconciliation missionaries was held in Tirana on September
17 2004. It was organized by the Committee and Mission of Nationwide Reconciliation
with the participation of all the reconciliation association, represented
by 560 delegates from Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia and Montenegro. There
were present the representatives of Albanian State, Clergy, Diaspora,
International Organizations, Diplomatic Body, Political Parties, Medias,
and NGO-s. The Congress discussed about and approved the strategy about
prevention of blood feud and observance of legal state, submitted by the
Committee of Nationwide Reconciliation and suppored the bill proposed
by 14 members of Albanian Parliament “About the establishment and
functioning of the Consultative Coordinative Council in the fight against
blood feud”. The congress suggested that this bill should be enriched
more by the assistance of the experts of Council of Europe and considered
the variant of the bill “About the Preventive Administrative Measures
against Blood feud”, submitted to the Parliament by one Deputy,
as inappropriate. The Congress asked to all the reconciliation associations
and missions to coordinate their work with the state institutions, clergy
and other factors of civil society for the final liberation of the isolated
families, maximal sentence of the killer and stoppage of propaganda that
incites the psychology of blood feud.
a) – The sensitivity and efforts of the International Community
for the mitigation of the consequences of the blood feud phenomenon in
Albania and for the insurance provided to the Albanian families that have
emigrated because of this phenomenon.
b) – The support of the Supreme Elite of the Albanian State, President
of the Republic, Head of the Parliament, Prime Minister, Deputy Prime
Minister, and the Leader of the Parliamentary Opposition toward the work
of the reconciliation missionaries.
c) – The continuous help and preoccupation of the clergy for the
prevention of conflicts and reconciliation of families in enmity.
d) – The initiative of the President of the Republic for calling
a meeting with the civil society and state institutions for the establishment
of the Consultative Coordinative Council in the fight against blood feud”.
e) – The Initiative of the Albanian Government for the establishment
of the Center of Educational and Social Training of the isolated children.
f) – The initiative of the Public Order Minister for the establishing
of the special structures of the Police in war against the phenomenon
of blood feud and the efforts of the State’s Police for preventing
The restoration of Kanun’s tradition for putting order in community
and blood feud phenomenon is a reaction of an unprotected society where
the state does not totally use its authority. Choosing the self-judgment
in this reaction and avoiding the law is in opposition with both, the
state of law and tradition. The Albanian tradition has never accepted
1990, when the transition period started, the Albanian society, was not
well orientated and was confronted with difficult challenges. In Albania
was spread the phenomenon of armed robberies, property kidnapping, weapon,
women and drugs trafficking, which incited the murders for revenge and
blood feud, not only in the northern areas, where has existed the Kanun’s
mentality but also in south. 3000 Albanians are killed by self-judgment,
by depriving the joy and happiness to the children and women that are
forced to shut themselves up in their homes, because they are afraid of
the enemy. Despite the work done by the government and the Public Order
organs in collecting the weapons, more than 100 000 families, still hold
them. From 1991 until 1998, 2300 families were involved in enmity conflicts.
The murders and the hatred among the individuals or groups within the
society were increased especially in 1996-1997 because of the fierce political
war and fall of the pyramid-firms. Only in 1997 1500 persons were killed.
In such conditions, the Committee of Nationwide Reconciliation called
the First Congress of Reconciliation Missionaries where was approved the
strategy for the prevention of murders for revenge and blood feud and
observance of the authority of state of law. For the application of this
strategy, the Committee organized in Puka city, on 14 June 2001, the meeting
with the representatives of all the villages in the Northern Albania and
some problematic areas in South, where was decided that: The murder’s
responsibility should fall only on the guilty person, which should be
penal prosecuted by the state; the women, children and drugs traffickers
should be publicly denounced and isolated by the society. After this moment,
there was a marked decrease of the murders for blood feud and 611 reconciliations,
mainly in north, were done. In 2002, the number of the families in enmity
was decreased to 1376. In this period, 1270 had left the country to hide
from the killer, by laying the burden of suffers and the efforts to survive
on the women’s and children’s shoulders.
During 2002-2003, the associations and the missions could reconcile other
652 families, which accepted to solve their conflict by the legal way.
Today, actually, there are 670 families in enmity, 160 children can not
go to school because of this, and 73 of them are in life danger. During
2003-2004, 54 families have left Albania by illegal ways because they
were seriously threatened. The International Community has supported and
protected these families by providing them permanent asylum.
The families in enmity do not declare the isolation to the public order
organs for not urging the situation. That is why the official figures
of the police are always lower than the real ones. In 2003 the number
of murders for blood feud increased again, while in 2004 this figure decreased.
The tendency is for amelioration. The quarrels for property reasons, which
happen also between relatives, are still problematic. In this moment,
in country level, are highlighted 1600 conflicts, which might cause blood
shed at any moment. The increase of violence and murders within the family
and the conflicts for property reasons happen as a result of the mentality
that needs a lot of time to be changed.
The wrong propaganda played also a negative role for inciting this phenomenon:
In the Second Congress of Reconciliation Missionaries, on 26 February
2001, the committee demanded that the term “Reconciliation of Blood”
should not be used in media, because this nomination would incite more
the psychology of blood feud, in the conditions of the state’s fragility,
but the media, misused, glorified and exaggerated the blood feud term,
as they mistakenly incited the pyramid-firms. In the local and foreign
press is time and again emphasized the presence of a “blood quarter”,
which has never existed.
The congress attested that the figures of the persons killed for blood
feud are often multiplied and number of the fastening families and children
The presence of the widows and the orphans in TV shows, as persons isolated
for blood feud, is nonsense because the family of the killed person does
not get isolated. This propaganda has also obstructed the identification
of murders. The difference between the murders for blood feud from those
for revenge is distinguished by the way of execution, preparation of decision
and the behavior toward the dead body. Most of the killings do not complete
the elements of the blood feud crime.
The Congress Decided:
To ask to the United Nations Organization, European Union, Council of
Europe, OSCE and the Government of United States of America a more complete
support toward the democracy and reforms in Albania and considering that
the Albanian state and society, are not temporarily able to find the needed
means against the blood feud phenomenon, to take under protection all
the families that emigrate from Albania because of blood feud.
invite the Council of Europe and the member countries of EU to activate
all the possible potentials, for offering more projects for the population
of the rural areas in Albania.
invite the Albanian Parliament, to re-examine the penal code so that the
authors of the murder with malice forethought are sentenced from 25 years
to life sentence without having the right of parole or amnesty.
invite the Albanian Parliament to contribute further on the improvement
of the law about the establishment and functioning of the consultative
coordinative council, in the fight against blood feud, by inviting also
the experts of Council of Europe in the compilation of the final draft.
invite the Albanian Government to take the respective measures and decisions
so that all the institutions of the Albanian state should have the figures
of the families involved in property conflicts and to propose special
laws that avoid the self-judgment.
invite the Albanian Government for further investments on the establishment
of the educative centers for the orphan and isolated children, by using
the ex-houses of culture and other public buildings that are neglected
for being privatized.
invite the Albanian Government and the United Nations for putting the
gathering and registration of weapons totally under control.
invite the Albanian prosecution, investigation and law executing organs
for increasing the level of cooperation with the community and civil society
for discovering, preventing and punishing the operators of organized crime.
invite the judicial system, to give justice and to fight the compromised
elements in the courts.
invite the Ministry of Education and Sciences, to increase at a higher
level the educative work in the schools, so that the children gain more
complete knowledge about love, work, life, family, and the rights and
obligations in a contemporaneous society.
invite the clergy for playing a greater role in emancipating the Albanian
invite the media to control the editions and emissions that might incite
the psychology of murders for blood feud.
invite the Civil Society for contributing more for the sensitization and
transformation of the Albanian mentality, because the patriarchal position
and the violence within the family show that our society is still very
far from the emancipation.
The removal of the death sentence is a newness of the civilized Europe
that should be supported by all the citizens. The restoration of this
sentence, which is demanded by a considerable part of the society, does
guaranty neither the establishment of justice nor the prevention of murders
by self-judgment. The examples of the missionaries of the Kurbin district,
activists of the Committee of Reconciliation of Lushnja district and members
of the BESA association in Puka districts show that the application of
the positive tradition for supporting the state of law is one of the most
efficient ways for the prevention of blood feud, solving the conflicts,
and peaceful cohabitation between different groups. This strategy of Committee
of Nationwide Reconciliation is acquired and will be applied by all the
missionaries and association that work in a common front with the state
against the crime.