Yesterday violent protests in opposition of the current prime minister rocked Tirana. The Peace Corps staff were great about warning us about them in advance and asking us to steer clear of the city.
In the morning yesterday I noticed a big group of Lezhean men leaving via bus for Tirana and in the afternoon I caught a fair amount of the live video coverage of the protest turning violent when I was out for coffees in town. However, I have not seen any other evidence of the protests in my site. Life continues on as “normal” here.
The coverage that’s accumulating online paints a pretty interesting story, though. I’m not going to comment on it here (and my work with local government is very much disconnected from the national sphere), but these protests sheds some contextual light onto just how difficult it can be do accomplish anything here and just how deep seeded the corruption in this country actually is. Plus, it’s a bit concerning to see places I frequent as the backdrop for such events and see my PC host country compared to Tunisia in the headlines.