Memorie.al publishes some unknown parts from the investigative and judicial file of the re-conviction of Pjetër Arbnori during the period he was serving his sentence in Burrel Prison in 1979, where the district prosecutor of Mat, Rexh Meta, based on the depositions of some accomplices of Arbnori, as well as his interrogation by the investigator of the Internal Affairs Branch of that district, Jani Kolezi, as well as the act-expertise of the investigator Sofokli Afezolli against the manuscript books that Pjetër Arbnori secretly wrote in the cells of that prison, has filed the case in Burrell court. All the depositions and accusations of Arbnor’s accomplices, such as JZ, B.Ç., MK, Gj.L., etc., regarding the debates and conversations they had had with him while serving his sentence, where he had spoken to them about : The October Revolution, the Cultural-Proletarian Revolution in China, Marxism-Leninism, Socialism, America, France, England, Lenin, Stalin, the senior leadership of the ALP and Enver Hoxha, the overthrow of the communist regime in Albania, etc.
“While witness B.Ç., talking about our popular power, said that: ‘These people lie in their press and newspapers’. But the fierce enmity of this defendant with our popular power is openly expressed in his desire to overthrow our popular power, telling witness JZ, that: ‘You and your uncle will be accountable to us, for this very thing you defend this system ‘, or when you advise witness MK, that’ Do not bow to these, we have the future, therefore you must prepare others’. From the evidence gathered in the investigative file emerges many other hostile conversations conducted by the defendant, or his ideas and views, but which together with the other material collected in the investigative file, with his attitude from the enemy to the investigator, fully prove not only the accusation against the defendant Pjetër Arbnori, but his being as a sworn enemy until the end of this popular power “.
This is stated, among other things, in one of the reports of the Mati district prosecutor, Rexh Meta, dated April 30, 1979, where he reports on the investigations carried out by the district’s investigation against the prisoner Pjetër Arbnori, who at that time was in Burrell Prison, where he was serving a 25-year sentence given in 1962, accused of wanting to form a Social Democratic party. What else is said about the accusations made against Pjetër Arbnor at that time in Burrel prison and who were the prisoners who agreed to testify against him? What had Arbnori written in his novel “The Half-Left House” and how were the parts of that book commented by the investigator Sofokli Afezolli in the act-expertise made by him which re-sentenced him for another ten years? How was the prisoner Pjetër Arbnori protected from the accusations made against him at that time and what did he write in the letters he sent from prison to the General Prosecutor, Prime Minister Mehmet Shehu, and in 1986, to Ramiz Alia? With all these archival documents that Memorie.al publishes for the first time, we met in previous issues, where in an interview we conducted at that time with Mr. Pjetër Arbnori, he told about the translations made by political prisoners in the camps and prisons of the communist regime of Enver Hoxha. While in today’s issue we are publishing the letter that Pjetër Arbnori sent to Ramiz Alia, in 1986.
Follows from the previous number
Letter of the political prisoner, Pjetër Arbnori, to Ramiz Alia
Attorney General of the Republic
For the knowledge of
Chairman of the Presidium of the People’s Assembly
Systematically violating the law and internal regulations of Burrell Prison, the command forced me to go on a seven-day hunger strike, and it is not known when it will end.
The Deputy Director of Camps and Prisons, Mithat Bare, in the presence of the Chairman of the Internal Affairs Branch of Mat district, and Commander Ismail Musta, read us the decision of 28 May 1983 “On the abolition of personal cooking (we are forbidden to boil a cup of tea with newspapers, when we have the flu) and limiting food (1-2 kg) and fruits and vegetables (3 kg) per month.
We were read that this was done to facilitate our families. He read explicitly, “The prisoner is allowed to take from the family only 2 kg. Sugar, butter, or marmalade, per month. While near the prison, a shop will be opened where there will be daily consumption of pies, sausages, canned food, coffee, etc. A few days later, the commander posted and read a new regulation, which completely overturned the previous regulation, which stated that prisoners would receive food in the amount prescribed by the family, as well as consume the products at the store. of prison, when possible.
So, the word “others” was removed and the magic word “when possible” was added. Which for the commander meant “when I love you”? In addition, another clause came out from Mithat Bare, which said: in the store you can buy only 3 kg. fruits and vegetables per month, if we had not received them from the family. This had nothing to do with relieving the family and for weeks the store remained with biscuits, coffee, and jam.
Once every two weeks, we were given some 100 grams of sausage that disappeared again. Of the two kilograms allowed, only sugar was sold, others said no. I understand that there are shortages in the market, but how did it happen that the missing items were put on our list?! We asked that these items be replaced with cottage cheese, oil, or cheese to be thrown into the cauldron soup. But the commander said, “You will never eat such things.”
The guards laughed at us and said, “Eat jam, biscuits, drink coffee.” But does man live only on biscuits and jam?! How many times have I read the saying of Marie Antoinette in France in 1789? When told that people have no bread to eat, she said to eat biscuits better. To me the supply system set up by the commander is, a robbery of our income which was exchanged for items on the black market.
The regulation allowed canned food, while the commander allowed only jam and pickled peppers. The factory “Ali Kelmendi” produced over 100 types of canned food and if not, all can come, but olives, cottage cheese, grosha, sardines, meat, and frying cannot come?! In these conditions the family sent me packages, as well as others. I was sent onions, cheese, and powdered milk.
You are leading us to death!
The package was returned to me just like many others. If the products in it were radioactive materials?! How is it possible that powdered milk found in stores is not allowed by the family? A watermelon came to us at the meeting and was cut in half and given to the family. The skin was inserted into the three-pound part. One was brought by his wife 3 kg. olives, but they turned her back, telling her it was forbidden! What does the command consider olive, a mineral extracted from the underground or seafood, that allows it to enter the prison?! I returned the meatballs and boiled eggs they had brought me to the meeting!
For the 23 years I have been incarcerated, according to the norm we have had one day of rice soup, one day of pasta soup, and one day of beans. For a year the command has been cutting our beans even though there have always been such in the warehouse. It is not right for our ration to be eaten by the police. Where will I, as a prisoner, get the minimum protein allowed by law? We are systematically eaten by the two hours of treatment allowed by the prison regulations.
Any guard eats 20 minutes when he wants to, and if you complain he threatens. The clock is hidden in the office, but the atopalant tells us the lost minutes. A small repair, a hospital discharge, an appointment, a call to command, all of these await our vital ventilation. We live in a room of 8 by 5, 25 men who are lit by a 40-watt lamp, just like those of the toilets.
I am not mentioning here the cases when the command refuses to let us out on air. Even when we do the ventilation, 60 minutes pass quickly, where with the cleaning of the room, where with going out in the bathroom, where with going to the barber, etc. So, the ventilation goes 30 minutes. Never find more than 10 people in the yard. Bathroom is allowed 2 times in 24 hours, from 20 minutes. There are four separates in two taps, 20-25 room members are forced to close all inside.
If you take your head or body out of line, you are under the threat of dungeon and cutting correspondence for three months, a threat that has happened many times. Everyone has 5 minutes tap and toilet. Can a person fulfill his personal needs within these minutes?! The command has excess time at dinner from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., but refuses to add minutes. Prisoners are forced to return with unwashed hands and stomach ailments.
In the room, most of us use urine gourds and plasma bags when our needs come. They often refuse us to go to the bathroom during the day, forcing us to do them in our cells. In the regulations we have a bathroom once in ten days but in fact, even when it is turned on, it no longer works and we are forced to wash 25 people in 60 minutes. The command may find time to do these tasks, but it will not.
Prison Doctor Tricks!
We have been asking the commander to disinfect the insects since July. There will be, he told us, but only in October when the typhoid fell into a cell, was this room disinfected. We officially have 3 nurses, but they are in vain. Once a year or two, he is hospitalized by a sick person and given a ” poor fortune” companion. But even these, stay 10 days and then dust there.
We have a lot of patients. Once a year we are visited by the Health Commission and the Ministry of Internal Affairs for inspection. The doctors just insert their heads and make a report as if everything is fine. We rarely do a radioscopy and we all come out healthy. Once Skënder Alia, who had stayed in the sanatorium for a long time, came out healthy.
I wrote to these commands but got negative responses! In these conditions I was forced to declare a hunger strike, in compliance with the regulation. From the first day they brought butter to the prison, which had previously been refused. They called me and said: why did you break the strike, why did we bring the butter?! I said, ‘I’re not a gentleman who lives on butter and biscuits. I strike for the implementation of the regulation. The second day came the canned fish, and the third came the cheese and sausage.
Although the commander told us that you would never eat them. How is it possible that they came in three days?! The ward nurse, NCO Kamber Lybeshari, does not answer or visit you unless the doctor calls you. He hospitalized me twice when I had broncho-pneumonia and a heart attack. Both times he left me with the cauldron soup for two weeks. I was also introduced to the provocateur M. K., who recorded all the words he said in my name. And after 10 years in 1979, I was re-sentenced to 12 years.
I remember as today the poor villager Hilmi Gocaj who had spent almost 20 years in prison and had a few days left to be released. He had caught a belly and was saying to Lybeshari, aman oh god doctor we did medicine. “You want milk, so do it,” replied Lybeshari cynically! After the night, he became ill and died the next day. Kamberi came with the nurse and the cleaner. They took him and took him to the infirmary, where they made an accurate report, where it was said that he “died under the care of doctors”.
Burrel, Ward 321
(Note by Pjetër Arbnori, the strike lasted about 20 days and was attended by many prisoners. But I wrote the letter alone because the collective protest was forbidden). /Memorie.al