Documentary Tells about Bulgarian Trace in Albania

Journalist Boyko Vassilev’s documentary Bratochendi. Voices from Albania will be broadcast on the Bulgarian National Television at 10 pm on 28 July. The film focuses on two main topics – Albania and the Bulgarian minority in the country.

In Vassilev’s words, many in Bulgaria know Albania for extraordinary things such as the “besa” (the pledge of honor), the “gjakmarrja” (blood revenge) and the fame of the most isolated communist dictatorship. But today Albania is breaking the clichés, he said in an interview for BTA’s BG World column.

“Albania is the country of development, construction boom, tourism and high technology – a real factor in the Balkans. Everyone here looks to the West. In 2017, Albania officially recognised the Bulgarian minority. The people I talked to have always assumed themselves to be Bulgarians. Moreover, they know that their grandparents were called that, not to mention that their Albanian neighbours called them that. There are also people with a Macedonian identity; let us not forget that Albania used to border the former Yugoslavia. In the age of the internet, the question of identity matters. And that is why it is extremely interesting how the Bulgarian root has survived in a country that has no border with Bulgaria – and was completely isolated from it between 1960 and 1990,” pointed out Vassilev.