The National Council of Museums has given the go-ahead for the establishment of a National Jewish Museum in Albania, an idea promoted by the Ministry of Culture and the Municipality of Vlora.
It is the same Albanian minister of culture, Elva Margariti, who made the news known through her social profiles:
"A story that must be told. It is the story of a people on the run, persecuted, who found refuge in a small town, which opened its doors, defended them, gave them its names. The National Museum of the Jews in Vlora will be the model of a contemporary museum that will transport us into life stories, testimonies, voices and images.
The National Council of Museums paved the way for the idea of the Ministry of Culture and the Municipality of Vlora, designed by the Albanian-American Foundation for Development under the advice of Professor Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblet, concerning the establishment of this museum. Generations must know this story of sacrifices, coexistence and faith. " - reads in the Facebook post of the minister.
The Jewish museum in Berat
in 2018 it was founded - by Simon Vrusho - in Berat a museum dedicated to the more than 600 Jews saved during the Second World War.
The 'Solomon' museum - inaugurated in 2018 - is dedicated to the memory of the Holocaust and, in particular, to the Jews of the city of Berat.
Located on the main street of the castle, the museum focuses mainly on the more than 600 Jews rescued during the Second World War in Berat. Furthermore, it aims to bring to light evidence of a period of almost 500 years, from 1520, when it is thought that the first 25 Jewish families arrived in Berat from Italy and Spain.
The origins of the Jewish community in Albania
Most of the Jewish community in Albania comes from Ioannina: thirteen families and their descendants from the Castro district, who in the period between the two world wars formed a small community of artisans and merchants based in Vlora, opening shops elsewhere.
This community survived the Nazi war and occupation. After the war, like most of the Albanian petty bourgeoisie, they were expropriated from the communist regime and over the years integrated into mixed marriages with other religious communities.
In the XNUMXs, the small Albanian Jewish community began with the first attempts to leave for Israel, but this right was denied by the former communist dictator Enver Hoxha. Since the early eighties, with the improvement of Albania's relations with Greece, some of them returned to visit Ioannina.
In the mid-nineties, however, with the help of the American Jewish community and other Jewish organizations, most of them left the country, bringing with them their Albanian history of over a century.
Jews in Albania
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