Greek Minority in Albania Celebrates “OXI Day”

The Greek minority in Albania enthusiastically commemorated the October 28th “OXI Day” in a series of celebrations that lasted three days.

Celebrations started on Thursday, when students from Greek schools of Agioi Saranda participated in an art program in the city theatre which included recitals, dancing, music and the traditional greetings from minority and Greek officials.

Greek ambassador to Tirana, Mrs. Eleni Tourani, local MP and president of Human Rights Union Party (KEAD) Evangelos Doule and Omonoia party president Leonidas Pappas were among the dignitaries who gave speeches.

On Friday it was time for students from the Dervitsiani and Vouliatiou schools in the prefecture of Argirokastro to take on the celebrations, followed by those from the schools of the Delvino prefecture in the afternoon.

The culmination of the celebrations took place on Oct.28 at the holy monastery of Kleisoura, where there is a ossuary containing bones of soldiers who died in the 1940 campaign against fascist Italy.

Then followed the main event at the Vuliarates cemetery, where the Greek fallen soldiers of the “Albanian epic campaign” are buried.

As in every year, relatives of the fallen from all over Greece were present in both the Kleisoures and the Vouliarates events, along with the dignitaries.

Greetings in the Vouliarates event were offered by ambassador Sourani and the president of the Society of the Unburied Fallen of the 1940 campaign, Mr. Sourlas.

In their speeches they both pointed to the need for Albanian authorities to allow the identification of the fallen, as per their agreement. They added the need for the creation of two more cemeteries, one in Kleisoura and one in Korytsa.