Albanian man receives citizenship decades after having it revoked during Communism

By Team Albanians - May 07, 2020

On April 27th, Team Albanians shared the story of Shefqet Suljman Gavoçi which touched many Albanians. Since then, we were able to get in touch with the person who shot this video. He is Usama and the grandson of Mr. Gavoçi. We learned from Usama that Mr. Gavoçi is 102 years old, and as a proud Albanian he has never forgotten where he came from. Usama says "He has dedicated his whole life in helping Albanians all around the world. He stands strong for his country and his people."

The 102-year-old hero was born in the city of Shkodra, in 1918.

Gavoçi is the first son of imam Sulejman Gavoçi, who was a distinguished fighter in the wars against the Serbs that took place from Shkodra to Tuz. This family, with a lot of influence in Shkodra, was forced to leave their beloved city after being followed by the supporters of King Zog.

In 1946 they settled in Damascus, Syria. As more Albanians came and settled in the same village, it became known as "The Arnaout Village," meaning "The Albanian Village."

When he settled in Syria, Enver Hoxha's government stripped him of his Albanian nationality. Decades later, at the age of 102, Gavoçi regained his nationality and obtained an Albanian passport. He never forgot his origin and proudly says he is Albanian. Gavoçi is an example of strength for all of us and is an inspiration to the culture and people of his country, as he never tired of helping his people for decades.

Mr. Gavoçi continues to live in Syria and also spends his time in Syria, Saudi Arabia, and Sweden visiting his family.

Below are photos of Mr. Gavoçi, courtesy of Usama Gavoçi.

Gavoçi in 1936 in Cairo, Egypt where he completed his university studies.

Gavoçi in Damascus, Syria in the 1950s.

Gavoçi in Albania in 1957.

Gavoçi in Krujë in 1957.

Gavoçi in Tiranë in 1957.

Mr. Gavoçi with his grandson Usama in Tirana. 

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