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The Washington Post has a lengthy article on the phenomenon of sworn virgins. Elvira Dones, an Albanian born author and journalist has recently made a film on this theme.

Also looking at women in Albanian society, Nicole Itano reports for Women's eNews on the experience of Roma women.

MSNBC carries an FT report on the problems facing small businesses in Albania trying to cope with hours-long power cuts every day. The report quotes the Prime Minister's claims that Albania has reached a 'turning point' and that within four years the country will be exporting electricity.

The Economist has a piece on President Topi. The author believes that the President will support measures to limit the term of office for the Chief Prosecutor, thus dealing with the Sollaku issue. In contrast to the Prime Minister's optimism, the Economist reports that 'plans for private investors to build new power plants are way behind schedule.'

Forbes carries an AP story on US attempts to persuade the Canadians to take the Uighurs from the Guantanamo interment camp who were eventually resettled in Albania. The report claims that the US authorities are continuing to meet with the Canadians to discuss the fate of 17 other Uighurs held at Guantanamo, but with little success.

A BBC piece on Uighurs in Kazhakstan from July provides some useful background on the Uighurs and their relationship with the Chinese state.

Finally, Senator Richard Lugar holds up Albania as a success story for the Nunn-Lugar Act, a post cold war piece of legislation co-sponsored by the Senator that provides funds and know-how for the disposal of WMD.

Comments

nick said…
its funny, i read that story in the economist, on top channel, translated in albanian, and the translation was a bit off...lol. Of all the articles though, thats the only one that most albos care about...not a lot of interest in wmd's, romas, uighurs or what not.
Anonymous said…
That woman from Washington Post's video did not strike me as 'sworn' anything.

At best she just likes to wear men's clothing, at worst she's a lesbian.

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Never did like that crappy song.

But it's true nevertheless.

Tomorrow in the wee hours of the morning we will be heading for the airport for the last time. I suppose it was too much to expect that I could have kept this going while getting ready to leave. So apologies for the lack of postings over the last weeks. This is post number 380 something so I suppose one post every two days is not a bad average.

There were probably 380 more in my head or scribbled down on scraps of paper, but many of them are perhaps best left there.

I suppose I should be penning - or typing - my final thoughts and reflections on two years in Tirana, but right now I don't have any. Maybe in a month or two though I might come back with something.

Thanks to all of you who have read this blog - especially those of you who have become regulars. Thanks also for linking and thanks to all who left comments.

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Welcome

Welcome to Our Man in Tirana. I moved to Tirana, capital of Albania, in October 2005 and left in October 2007. This blog is a mix of photographs, reports, links, impressions and, undoubtedly, prejudices relating to the city and the country.

Since I am no longer in Tirana I am no longer updating this blog. However, there are over 300 posts covering this two year period and I hope that they are still of some interest.

So if you are curious about Albania or if you are planning to visit I hope this blog will be of value.

Miss Globe 2007

On Saturday, we were at the Rogner meeting with an expat friend who was leaving Tirana. It was breakfast time, and as our friend was finishing his tea the breakfast room started to fill up with over-dressed (or under-dressed) young women wearing blue sashes. These were the contestants for the Miss Globe 2007 beauty pageant being held in Tirana tonight at the Palace of Congresses. High heel boots and mini-skirts - or in a couple of cases micro-skirts, or possibly just belts - have never struck me as obvious breakfast attire, but the girls seemed happy enough tottering and wobbling around with their tea and toast. I'm not sure why they were wearing their sashes - perhaps in case they forgot which country they came from.
As we were leaving they were boarding a large coach which I had seen a number of times around the city in the last few days for their next trip. I'm not sure how some of them made it up the steps, or how they managed to sit down, but perhaps these are the kinds o…