(103 letters from communist prisons)
Letters from Shkodra prison 1951- 1953
Letters from Burrell Prison 1953-1965
Memorie.al/Sunday 29.01.1967, still without dawn, and the darkness was on the way, when no one was alive on the street, I knocked hard on the door of the Franciscan Assembly, in the neighborhood “Arra e Madhe” of the city. Duel guard (or goalkeeper).
– I am looking for Father Frano Kirin.
– “He slept,” he replied.
– Take it, I have to inform you about the death of a friend!
After a while the door reopened and I faced Father Franon. As soon as he saw me, I changed his face, as if he were numb, he thought well and did not speak for a moment, and finally without comforting me, he said to me: “Son, he has left you rich!”. On the way home by bike, where a mountain of work and trouble awaited me, I thought very little about the words I heard. So quickly I asked myself: What happened to us? Our movable and immovable property was confiscated, it was confiscated… we were left alone, his family: aunt, sister, wife with three sons and two graves.
The good and enviable legacy…, but above all it left us a good name: glorious work for the benefit of the Homeland, national education, Islamic culture and fees. He left concrete works, published writings, manuscripts… yes, yes, he also left us letters from communist prisons with that beautiful writing, to express his love for his family perfectly artistically.
These 103 letters were preserved as expensive, as relics, as the greatest left treasure from him. When I got home, in the Parrucë neighborhood, I was calm and alive. I was full of energy to face that mortal day, which was also known as a day of victory, because we: father and family, arrived with triumph over 7000 days of suffering with deprivation of liberty, in forced labor camps and prisons, and for about 500 days (after being released alive from prison) we lived very happily in the over 200-year-old house of the Mukejs, in Shkodra.
In 1997, prof. Vehbi Hoti, professor of Psychology at the University “Luigj Gurakuqi” of Shkodra, defined the letters from prisons in this way: “Letter of exchange with the family… are an expression of his versatile personality. They are prose with poetic inspirations, very exciting and educational. They can rightly be called a “handbook” for education in general and family education in particular. They represent an intimate conversation with the family, especially with their children. He advises and guides them, seeks them out and encourages them to always move forward. “108 Letters from prisons are one of the ways in which the prisoner had the opportunity to communicate mainly with his family. In order to be “released” they had to meet the requirements of the regulation: to be short, about 1 page of a notebook, to be written clearly and understandably, on issues related to the health and needs of the prisoner; 1 letter per month was allowed. After the letter was checked, her fate to go to the family or not was left to the operative court… Many times, the letters did not come, because in certain situations, especially when prisoners were in labor camps, or when prisoners were punished for “breaking the rules,” communication and receipt of letters and food were cut off. (This has often happened in Burrell Prison), so letters are not regularly filed every month. During the time that Sheuqet Muka was serving his sentence in Shkodra, he sent a few letters. this is because we meet after 1 pair of thick bars at a distance of 1 meter away. From Shkodra prison in this book are presented the first 12 letters (20.IX.1951- 15. III. 1953), while the other 91 letters are from Burrel prison (1953 – 1965).
Correspondence from Burrel prison, which was over 100 km from Shkodra, has been more frequent. For nearly 19 years in prison, his family has been guarding 103 of them. Absences as a result: they are not allowed to be sent (are forbidden) or they are not allowed to be guarded by us. These are the copies, they are all being published, without any changes and some of them (the readable ones, which are not written in pencil), can be scanned. The purpose is to understand some aspects of the conditions, yes and to show how we have achieved communication, uninterrupted, with the father in prison, to keep in touch with us, to send in the last years of imprisonment every week (to eat) a letter and every mid-month a telegram with reply. Communication kept him alive and the gratitude of this political prisoner of conscience is boundless, as will be read and described in beautiful touching words in these letters. This regularity with letters, simple family communication telegrams, became the object of evaluation by the prison command and was recommended to the prisoners as an example to follow.
Derg. Sheuqet Muka. Prison of the Enemies of the People, Shkodra
Send. of Rep 321, Burrel
Letters from prisons, beginning in 1951 and ending with the letter August 1, 1965, are rare in their kind and perhaps the only ones that are preserved and being published. Their evaluation belongs to the reader.
Send me the envelope. Sheuqet Muka. Prison of the Enemies of the People) Shkodra with the initials at the top of each letter V.F.L.P. (Death – Fascism, Freedom – People). Posted by Rep 321 Burrel (address of this A.M. prison)
Letter from Shkodra prison
Letter no. 36
It has been a long time since you have heard me, you have called your name sweet! Well, how many times have I called you, but you could not feel me, why do you separate us from a distance of more than 100 kilometers. You always know what you have around you. If you did not know the hardships you have when traveling by car, you would have said that you are stupid, where you could not come during the four years except once to see me. How are aunts Xhevja and Hakja? I miss them a lot too. If they are well, embrace me with longing and greet me warmly. Meserret, who for us is the first light of our eyes, this time is bringing you birthday wishes through you, because that way I was even happier. I wish him full health and long life, and the beautiful name he has, may he always rejoice and be surrounded by goodness and joy, all as his heart and soul long. I received the letters of Adnan, Zija and Meserret together with the telegram. I was very happy that you are fine. I wish Tahiri and his wife the marriage of a son. Let them inherit! As well as Suta and Sabrije are bringing my congratulations for Myz’s wedding. On both sides, you have to go and drink coffee from my side. What about my Religion, Uranus and Adnan, His Freedom? He grabs me and kisses me hard. Uncle Elezit, Ragipit, Zijas e their families, as well as your brothers-in-law with your bride and your sisters and their husbands, Damnorvet, neighbor, and whoever ask you, all hello. For now, I do not need anything. Marmalade, biscuits do not fall on me. A little flour, milk boxes if any, prunes would have helped me. With that you are closing the letter to shake your hand warmly, to greet you cordially and, on this occasion Meserreti is kissing both cheeks.
Letter no. 37
Myhsinit, with brother and sister;
The sad news of the death of your beloved father, Uncle Elez, saddens me greatly. May God protect you all as you are. With his death, for our family Mukej, precedes her deity, which as long as he was alive, he had as his mark. Even though it was long ago, you hoped that we would have it for a long time, but after it was said, and especially for me, it was not even possible for you to see them alive once with him! You wrote this letter of condolence, my eyes are dipping in oil and my cheekbones are wet with tears, where I was in front of you, they shook hands with you one by one for the sake of health, from Adiles to Myniren! The death of the parents and that seed of the tribe, are extremely painful and tangible. But with whom we have all our sons and daughters, we have no choice but to be patient. Did Haxhirja stay there? This letter, if you do not find it in the middle of you, when you write it, bring me my condolences. By this letter, my condolences are also being extended to Hamid, Mehmet, Bahris and their sisters; as well as Aunt Xhevas, Fetes and Zija, who informed me and comforted me by telegraph. I am not talking to you about the rare merits and beautiful qualities of Uncle Elez as a popular man, who has enjoyed a popularity in all layers of the country since his youth. For those of us who left behind, it is up to us not to tarnish them. So be calm and at peace, may his soul and yours not be sheltered by any evil or evil, but always have life, health and good as much as your heart desires. I share in the pain with you.
Letter no. 38
I was very happy that you had a good time. Even Uranus, for whom I longed so much to see me, was thankfully like an apple. Of course, you will also be happy for the deduction for 3 and a half years without the 9 days I had, on the occasion of the implementation of the amnesty decree. This deduction was calculated for me after the amount of the sentence of 25 years that appears in the prison card, while I, according to the law “on the general provisions of the criminal code, promulgated in 1948, automatically fell to 20 years, because this law abolishes the sentence of life imprisonment as the main sentence, and does not allow punishment beyond 20 years. In order to correct this amount of sentence contained in the card, on January 16, 1957, I addressed a petition to the High Court in Tirana, which was followed by Zijaja, who, after being held responsible, informed me that you had been in prison for 20 years. they came down, and on top of that, they prayed back for a conditional release. In order to make the necessary correction on the card, an act of judicial authority is needed. Therefore, Zijaja should mediate once again, to request that this judicial act be issued to me, which corrects the amount of the sentence of 25 years imposed by the Shkodra court on 15. IX.1953, after the new Criminal Code enters into force in 1952, which has no retroactive effect, so that the change of the maximum sentence from 20 to 25 years, cannot be extended to the decisions given before the date of entry into force of the new code and consequently the lighter sentences that were in accordance with the laws of 1945 and 1948, they had provided the interested parties with acquired rights that could not be violated by the subsequent law. If I could receive this corrective act from the judicial authority, I would be able to calculate the deduction based on 20 years, and as a result you would have a double deduction of the current one. Therefore, until I receive an answer from you, I will not pray for correction. Along with this, I am waiting for the end of the prayer given on 10. X. 1957 to the Presidium of the People’s Assembly to forgive me the humiliating sentence. From Zija, apart from the letter that he sent me 3 months ago from Tirana, I had no other choice. Like this, like Qirjakut my greetings. I have not received any letter from you except Adnan’s postcard wishing me a Happy New Year. I received the arrival telegram within the day of Uranus, as well as the money you brought me. Dinos of wife I wish you marriage. Let them inherit and let their whole life go in harmony. Heartfelt greetings to the whole family of the late uncle Elez and especially to his daughter Bija. Irfan kissed her cheeks. The family of Vjerdhevet and Hafiz Haliti, my condolences. When you have the opportunity to take some food, for my sake, first of all take the Matthews of Hakis.
I hug you all one by one with a lot of longing and those who ask for me, salute.
Letter no. 39
The joy of our family, Meserret;
The last telegram refreshes me and I enjoy it very much, I wish you always good health. Thankfully I was fine without any complaints. Even the radioscopy shot my seeds well. I received your letter and telegram from Zija, together with the calendar that took me from Tirana, at once. For the correction of the sentence by Kom. of prison, on 23 February 1958 I presented the petition
Territorial Military Court of Tirana. As soon as the correction of the sentence is communicated to me, I will pray for conditional release, because with the reduction of qi that belongs to me, I am almost filled with ¾ of the sentence. From Ziya, I expected that he was writing me something about the clue prayer, but apparently, there was no next what to inform me. Greetings to me. This time, neither Symja nor Lirija should come to see me. Let them wait a little longer for the weather to be fine. Maybe I go to Tirana for an operation, and then they make the trip even easier. I also miss seeing them, both these and Aunt Xhevan and His. I have the opportunity to see the rest of you, when it is their turn to bring me food. Do not believe how healthy I am for the news you gave me that you spend your free time with lessons and studies. Well done! I expected from Adnan that he is informing me that he has registered to attend a faculty by correspondence. Even though I am old, I get fat when I learn something that I did not have the opportunity to know before. As for Him that is tue successfully completed the class lessons, I did very well. I wish you success since the beginning of this school year. I look forward to sending you the grades qi has won in the semester exams. Like this, as Lirijen was grabbing and kissing him with a lot of longing. On the next issue, which Uranus asked about, we now talk about when you come to the meeting. If you do not see the treasure, I expect you to come some day before Ramadan. And push me, there is nothing. Legume, olives, terhan, flour and salt are no longer needed bring why I have. Instead of pasta, you had a few noodles, which is better, because I also like pasta. I have soap and sauce. Elfe coffee do not forget. You, aunt Xhevan; Uranus, Feten and Adnani Symen, to hug me tightly from me. Hakas, Zades, Ragip and Myhsin with members of the families they have, many greetings. Especially Hafis Musa, Hafis Ujkashevic, Shuayb with his brother Ruzhdis, Tahir and the other neighbors and all those who ask you, all greetings. If you had the opportunity, go and see Shaqirin which is sicken and greets me from Ragip’s me.
The feet that I said to Uranus, do not forget to bring them to me, even a few nuts.
Letter no. 40
Copy of the prayer
With the mediation of Kom. Burrel Prison Military Territorial Court of Tirana.
For sentence correction
We signed Sheuqet Muka from Shkodra, now in Burrel prison, I get permission to present to you the following petition: On the occasion of the implementation of the decree for amnesty no. 2548, d.27.XI 1957 of the Presidium of the People’s Assembly, it was concluded that in the card of the Prison I am serving a sentence of 25 years imprisonment and on this basis the amount of the sentence was reduced to the effect of that decree as a beneficiary of amnesty. Given the reason I invoke down here, I understand that we are facing a qi mistake should be remedied by a new court decision, after which the sentence we should be charged with is 20 years imprisonment and not 25.
The Military Court of Shkodra, with its decision to declare on 23 June 1947 No. 195, sentenced me to life imprisonment, a sentence which was automatically up to 20 years for the effect of the law “On the general provisions of the Criminal Code, I was promoted to in 1948, when I abolished the sentence of life imprisonment as the main sentence, you did not allow sentences beyond 20 years of imprisonment. For this reason, my final sentence must be no more than 20 years of imprisonment, and therefore the figure for 25 years in the act of the trial is reproduced and, in the prison, card must be corrected, a correction that is in the competence of that Judicial Authority. In line with the legal principle of the retroactive effect of criminal law, a principle which we find adapted even from our current legislation, the new law has retroactive effect when it abolishes or mitigates the sentence. So as a result of the difference between the law of the time, which I was judged by, and the later law that mitigates the previous sentence, I have to take advantage and have in charge a prison sentence that is milder. This acquired right will not be affected, because the Criminal Code, which came into force in 1952, the maximum target of the sentence against personal liberty is increased to 25 years of imprisonment, so the principle: “criminal law has no retroactive effect” here finds the most typical case and place of application. Therefore, I ask you to take the case decision and, if this request is accepted, to have the good fortune to notify the prison authority, to make the necessary correction on the card, so that I have the opportunity and amnesty and the reduction of amnesty in based on a sentence of 20 years.
Letter no. 41
- 04. 1958
Lirijes & Tijes;
“Two lollipops of the heart, two loving souls, two sincere daughters, two young mukes who shine like the rays of the sun of the two future falcon’s qi for virtues compete with the purity of the white lily leaves, the father wishes them a happy birthday!” To You, a little late, of Liberty three weeks in advance, by means of this lovable letter, is bringing you birthday wishes. Believe me, I always mean you, not differently, but how I always had you in front of my eyes and, who knows how many times a day I miss you so much that not even a night goes by without you being told to give me a good night’s sleep milk, when he falls asleep. Even in the years to come, you will always celebrate your birthdays and celebrate them with the best of luck, as all mankind expects the beautiful months of white spring, around which even nature itself laughs and life is renewed. So, you grew up with me, and you became like my aunt, my sister Fete, Hakas, my dear aunt, Symes. I myself have been and I am always good. Except for the cassava of your cassava, I have no other complaint which you have in your hand, to remove it from me, in case you will remember me by letters as you have reminded me until a while ago. It has been a while since I have had a letter from Ziya. How are you? Does everyone always have Dugaj? Greetings to me and to his family.
How are Ragipi, Myhsini’s uncles? Greetings to all of you. I also greet the Domnors and their families, especially Shuayb and Abdullah. Also, Ruzhdis, Repishti and Elez Barbullushi,
Hamid, Dan with Qazim’s son and other medicines as well as those who ask you for me to give my greetings. In the future, even if I correct the punishment, as it happened to the others who prayed before me, I will immediately pray for conditional release. I need multivitamins for a pair of balloons. Do not bring me pennies, biscuits, figs, sauce and salt. If you had noodles, do not drop pasta on me. Do not come until three weeks after Eid. When I left for Tirana, I telegraphed to you so that you would not take the road. Yogurt, sweet olives do not owe. A little spinach and plums do not forget. Aunt Xhevas, sister Fete of Symes, as well Meserret, Uranus and Adnan qi are the light of my eyes, greetings and hugs, and on this occasion, I wish you all the Eid wishes.
- April. 1958
He kissed you on the cheek, your father
Letter no. 42
2. 09. 1958
Dear Aunt Xheva;
It’s been three years since I saw you. Both you and I have missed you so much that I have you at once and as a mother, why did you raise and educate me. I know that my heart will break when you meet me, but please do not do this, because you get tired and then you get tired. I was very upset with the photo of the nephew and the boys, because it seemed to me that I was standing between them and I was enjoying them. The letter of Meserret and that of Zija as well as the telegram of I got uranium. How I rejoice in learning that I am good to you all! Irfan qi was sitting in front of Adnan, where he was playing, only the soft part of the cres in the photo was taken. Would you please send me a picture of him?
You should have known enough to honor both Bijes and Myhsin, whom on this occasion, I am also greeting. The photo that you did not expect from the boys, the first time I took it as a postcard and therefore not bad, but when I took it in my hand for the second time and took a look, first I noticed Meserret and then Adnan and last Uranus. As a group they had done quite well. The national garment on one side and the posture held on the other side aim to be more attractive, especially the eye I did not know I was fed up with. On the 13th of this month, Feta’s brother and Symes’s husband have a birthday. How you wish you had been among them on this day! Anima that you are for me oh my aunt and I are, qi for health, you have made me sound like an apple or you have no worry for me, why am I comfortable. With food I push even longer; rice and pasta do not fall on me, why I have. The melon turned out good for me, while the watermelons did not. When you come, if you have the opportunity, bring me grapes and figs and a melon from Lezha. Greens like the next time, 8 to 10 kg of coal, a little old canvas to reach the carpet. The time of coming, when you will see for yourself.
Greetings much like you, uncle Elezit, Fetes, Symes with son and grave; Hakas, Ragipit, neighbors and other medicines, and all those who ask for me. Even Mrs. Lot.
- IX. 1958
Letter no. 43
- 12. 1958
Fort of my loved ones: sister Fete of wife Syme;
I have been staying away from you for a long time, but with my heart, you have me constantly in your midst, even though we do not see each other with our eyes. I have a calm heart, I have you surrounded by my child for horns and aunts Xhevan at the head of Zijan qi reminds me. I always saw you well. You also have good comfort for me. Believe me, I have no complaint other than cassava for you never lack. Moreover, a little for the sake of the boys and the cemetery, and especially for the sake of Meserret and His, the elder would not let the seeds approach me, after I for this thing, I had taken measures in time since When you were young, you lived a regular life and stayed away from abuses. On the 4th of last month, a special commission came from Tirana to announce that all those sentenced to life imprisonment, according to the interpretation by the Presidium of the People’s Assembly of the law “on general provisions d. 3.IX.1958, reduced to 25 years of imprisonment and not to 20. Even if the Territorial Military Court of Tirana had corrected my sentence of 20 years, for which I addressed the prayer on 28 February 1958, this decision, after this interpretation, would still be abrogated. So, considering that I surrendered on October 21, 1946, it turns out that I was imprisoned for 12 years and 40 days.
Altogether, as a sentence, I was sentenced to 15 years and 7 months, and I was sentenced to 9 years and 5 months. At the beginning of the New Year, I will offer a prayer to the Presidium of the People’s Assembly. In case you, too, Syme, want to make a prayer on your behalf to this High Forum, know that you are giving down the date and year of the sentence here. Birthday 13 September 1887; date of sentencing 23 June 1946. In this way you will be answered by the Prison Command you have. For Hyrijen, I was very happy that he had succeeded in the operation that was done. I wish that this letter finds you safe and sound and that we return home. Bring me my greetings and greet me. Also, Zades and her sisters. I also received a postcard from Elez Gërbet, informing me that he had been released. I gained a lot of weight. During the time I was with him in Shkodra prison, he had me help a lot. Bring this to him and his parents My congratulations, especially to Elez, I soon wished marriage. How did he do with school? You had knowledge that grades received in the first two months. I also wish the boys to have a good time with work in Dugaja. I felt sorry for Zijan. I greet you and embrace you all with great longing. Dear Hakas, my respects. The sons and daughters of her, as well as the daughters-in-law of the young women who have many greetings. Qazi Hoxha, Ragip e his family, Zija, Myhsin, Domnorvet, Hamid and ilakavet, kojshive and all others who ask for me, the most say hello.
Burrel, 1. XII. 1958
Letter no. 44
20. 12. 1958
Beloved boy Meserret!
“I wish you a Happy New Year, with health and wine, with joys and good wishes as everyone’s heart desires! I cannot describe to you the joy I had in my soul when I saw you with Zijan on the day of the meeting. The pleasure came and increased many times over, that you had good health for everyone, even in terms of health. I will be taken to the hospital for surgery soon. This news was kindly given to me yesterday by a captain who called me. I ask you to be at all calm down for me after the qi operation will be done for me, it is not difficult. Let me hope, to learn as soon as possible, qi Symes to be fulfilled her desire. This is also my ardent desire. I do not need anything. In case you come, apart smoking a few pies with yogurt, do not bring me anything else.
Greetings and greetings to all. He kissed His freedom.
20. XII. 1958
Letter no. 45
My Flank Dear Lirije!
Lirije! When I saw you in the meeting, my heart was filled with joy, but at the same time I was carried by the weight of the great longing that has taken me for you and for everyone else. I was able to hold you back, but you, O loa of the heart, did not let the lady stop the tears from falling so that you fell on the cheekbones of your cheeks, like grains of figs! Do not worry about me, because in terms of health you have me like a ball. The qi operation that will be performed on me is easy and harmless, so you should be like you, like the others, completely calm for me. With him indeed qi in age I am pushed, but my health and body are like steel. Therefore, I repeat to you once more: do not be weak and do not have any fear for me. You were very happy for Verin, just as you were very happy for Him and Gjylfiroza who came to see me. This too was grown and made great for beauty. Let his mother live. Even Plumi, the little boy who approached me, I miss so much that I could not talk properly, not even with Vishon. Greetings to all. I do not need anything./Memorie.al
20 . II. 1959