Israel's new ambassador in Tirana: I got to know Albania through a film showing how it welcomed the Jews
Galit Peleg, the new ambassador of Israel in Tirana, officially started her duty through a ceremony held at the memorial dedicated to Jews in the Artificial Lake Park.
In his speech, the head of the Municipality of Tirana, Erion Veliaj, called Ambassador Peleg a successful career diplomat, who, like her predecessors, proves the respect that the State of Israel shows to Albania. "It is a great pleasure to welcome a friend, a career ambassador to Tirana; it is respect that the state of Israel shows to Albania, bringing ambassadors of high caliber", he declared.
Veliaj said that he is proud that Albania is one of the few countries that, during the Second World War, opened its doors to Jews. "It is not by chance that we came here, to the memorial dedicated to the Holocaust in Tirana's Lake Park, to remember that our little Albania has taken the right stance, being on the right side of history. This city had only 200 Jews at the beginning of the war, and at the end of it about 2000. Regardless of whether the families were Catholic, Orthodox, Sunni, Shia, or Protestant, they welcomed them without prejudice, without seeing racism, without being infected by anti-Semitism, " he continued.
The diplomat, who served in several important missions before coming to Albania, said that as the daughter of Holocaust survivors, she feels honored to start her duties in Tirana from this memorial.
“Si bijë e të mbijetuarve të Holokaustit, e dija se duhet ta nisja misionin tim në Shqipëri në një vend si ky. Jam këtu sepse dua t’i tregoj botës për mirësinë e popullit shqiptar. Ajo që më bën përshtypje kur flas me shqiptarët për këtë çështje është fakti se ata reagojnë në mënyrë të natyrshme, a thua se e gjithë bota ishte e dashur me hebrenjtë! Gati sikur thonë: “Ne i shpëtuam hebrenjtë se është pjesë e natyrës sonë”. Në fakt, është me të vërtetë në natyrën tuaj dhe ne e çmojmë këtë,” u shpreh Peleg.
Dimplomatja izraelite rrëfeu edhe lidhjen e saj shpirtërore me Shqipërinë dhe se e gjitha nisi pasi pa film shqiptar kushtuar mikpritjes së hebrenjve.
"When I received the news that I was coming to Tirana, I was very happy. Two years ago, a friend of mine told me that a film about Albania was being broadcast in the cinema of Tel Aviv, which told the story of the Jews who were saved by the Albanians. I say with conviction that this movie changed my life. The history of Albania and its Jews touched my heart in such a way that from that moment I realized that I had to come as Israel's ambassador to Albania. Two years passed and I am where I am," confessed the ambassador, who also promised that she will do everything during her mission so that Albania is considered more than just a friend of Israel.