The Covenant of Freedom 1878

Within the 140th anniversary of the Albanian League of Prizren the National Historical Museum opened an exhibition titled “The Covenant of Freedom 1878”. This exhibition shows the full journey of the Albanian League of Prizren. Dr. Dorian Koçi welcomed the attendees by saying that: “The Albanian League of Prizren represents the unity of our nation and it was a creation of the Albanian Committee of Istanbul. This committee consisted of famous Albanian intellectuals throughout our territory. Born in Kosovo, it represented the element of the most successful Albanian force in the Ottoman Empire. Moreover, its decisions affected all our territory (North, South, East, West) giving to Albanians proper social and national cohesion. ”

The exhibition shows a map that indicates the vilayet of Shkodra, Ioannina, Kosovo and Manastir. The second scutum presents the economic and cultural situation of Albania. (XIX century) The third one shows the Russo-Turkish War and the displacement of Albanians. The fourth is dedicated to the Istanbul Committee, which was established on December 18th, 1877. Abdyl Frasheri was elected chairman of this Committee. The next scutum shows the Treaty of St Stephen (March 3ed, 1878). The exhibition reflects the action of Gjakova (July – September 1878) and the heroic defense of Plava, Gucia, Hotin and Gruda. On November 26th 1880, the Ottoman army entered Ulcinj and handed it over to Montenegrins.

“The Covenant of Freedom 1878” presents the political opinion of the Albanians, which we find in the writings of Vaso Pasha (Pashko Vasa), Jeronim De Rada, Elena Gjika (Dora D’istria) etc. The exhibition ends with the formation of the Provisional Government (January – April 1881), with Ymer Prizreni (chairman), Shuaip Spahiu (deputy chairman), Abdyl Frashëri, Sulejman Vokshi and others.

The Albanian National Movement, which led the Albanian League of Prizren, marked a great qualitative step from the point of view of the ideological platform, the political demands and the combat front compared to the liberation movement of the past decades. The League of Prizren was the first movement of national liberation, for the sole fact that all the provinces of Albania participated in it.

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