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The Unofficial View of Tirana (26)

One death, two anniversaries, and an opening.

October 7: Death of Ramiz Alia

On October 7, Ramiz Alia, the last communist leader of Albania passed away. Only a few politicians attended, including rumored presidential candidate and notorious gambler Fatos Nano. PM Sali Berisha, president Bamir Topi, and PS-leader Edi Rama all avoided the last ceremony of the man who simply walked out of jail in 1997 during the semi-civil war. Ramiz Alia had succeeded party leader Enver Hoxha following his death in 1985. He was basically the architect of one of the least violent shifts to a capitalist economy in the region, without any apparent massacre (which came back with a vengeance — in 1997).
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