Special Envoy Rosenthal traveled with Special Representative Pandith to London, England, Athens, Greece, and Tirana, Albania, from March 5-9, 2012, to share their 2012 Hours Against Hate campaign with government ministries, mayors, and civil society.
In Tirana, S/E Rosenthal and S/R Pandith met with Albanian Prime Minister Sale Berisha, Minister of Culture Aldo Bumçi, Chairman on State Committee on Cults Racim Hasanaj, the Mayor of Tirana, Lulzin Basha. S/E Rosenthal thanked the Prime Minister for saving Albania’s entire Jewish population as well as other European Jews during the Holocaust. She echoed this sentiment with everyone she met in Albania. She and S/R Pandith introduced the 2012 Hours Against Hate campaign to all the government officials, religious leaders, students and other civil society members during their trip.
During their stay in Tirana, they participated in a roundtable dialogue with religious leaders of the Bektashi, Albanian Islamic Community, Orthodox, Catholic, and Evangelical communities, reflecting on Albania’s tradition of interfaith tolerance. They also met with members of the Albanian Jewish community and toured the proposed site for a Holocaust memorial in Tirana.
As the 2012 Hours Against Hate campaign is focused on youth, S/E Rosenthal and S/R Pandith met with several hundred students and faculty at the University of Tirana and at Tirana’s Madressa Haxhi Mahmud Dauti. 2012 Hours Against Hate was welcomed enthusiastically by all.
Albania’s leading broadcaster Top Channel aired their visits with the students and interviewed the Special Envoy and Special Representative for a special program on tolerance.