Powered by Konrad Adenauer Stiftung

Video-testimonies: Avni Bejkova about Burrel prison


AVNI BEJKOVA: They sent us to Burrel in 1946.

They took me from the hospital in Korça because I had got a
high fever. They took me to Burrel. We were 107 people from Korça Prison. It was 16
October 1945.

They took us there during the night. Next day we joined our prison mates.
Then they started planning who would stay in the cell, who would stay in the room, etc. You
survived on 300 grams of corn bread.

Water was a problem, because the whole prison had one well, but with all the pollution, we were around 600 people. For 600 people, not even a river would suffice. Then they took us to Tirana. They were quite cunning. They left us with no food, no water, dirty, so that we could perish. My mother visited me three months after I
was transferred to Burrel. During these three months I had got very sick.

I was already sick when I got there in fact. But I got worse: my fever had reached 39.5-40 degrees Celsius. The
process in my lungs had reactivated. I lost hope, but my mates, too, thought I was done.

However, nature does wonders. A doctor came, the father of Maks Velo. He was a doctor there. He was kind of interned too. He checked me and sad I was in a bad state, very bad. He knew most of the people there. Despite this state, I was to be taken to the cell. Not only were people hungry, with chronic, torturing hunger, but we also started having lice because of the extraordinary filth.

Then the maltreatment started. They removed the prisoners’ food. They only assigned one package a month: a package of seven kilos. We slowly started losing our physical resistance, our own reserves from the past. People started getting thinner, all skin and bones. No food, no hygiene, terrible treatment. Spiritually in utter sorrow and loss of  hope. People ended up having to hold themselves on walls merely to walk.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts