Albania Country Profile

Albania, officially the Republic Of Albania is a country in Southeast Europe on the Adriatic and Ionian sea within the Mediterranean sea. It shares land borders with Montenegro to the northwest, Kosovo to the northeast, North Macedonia to the east, Greece to the south and maritime borders with Greece, Montenegro, and Italy to the west. With a population of 2.87 million in 2017, Albania ranks 136th in the world by population. The population density is 101 inhabitants per square kilometer.
The flag of Albania is a red flag with aa black double-headed eagle in the center. The red color symbolizes the bravery, strength, and valor of the Albanian people and the black color appears as a symbol of freedom and heroism.
The most –commonly practiced religion in Albania is Islam, the second –most-commonly practiced religion is Christianity (mainly Orthodox, Catholic, and Protestant), however, there are also many irreligious people. The Albanian language is an Indo-European language spoken primarily in south-Eastern Europe and Diaspora. It is called Shqip in Albanian. It is spoken by about 7.6 million people, mainly in Albania and Kosov, and also in parts of Italy, Macedonia, Montenegro, Romania, and Serbia. There are two main dialects: Geg, Tosk and an intermediary dialect between them. The Albanian alphabet (Albanian: alphabet shqip) is a variant of the Latin alphabet used to write.


Albania has the highest migration flow in Europe. One-third of the population has left the country in the last 25 years. The number of emigrants is now higher than the resident Albanian labor force. A recent surge in the number of Albanian asylum seekers driven to leave by economic motivations points to the country’s ongoing struggle to increase economic growth and job creation. A country of entrenched poverty, Albania is one of the poorest in Europe. One of the biggest problems Albania is facing is the perception/reality of rampant corruption in its government/society, rampant illegal activity by its mafia and the lack of the rule of law, all of which contribute to a lack of good jobs and foreign investment compared to other States. The Albanian Mafia participates in a diverse range of criminal enterprises including trafficking in drugs, arms, humans, and human organs. The Albanian criminal scenario is characterized by diversified criminal plans which, in their complexity, show one of the highest criminal capacities in the world. Human trafficking in Albania. Albania is a source country for men, women, and children subjected to trafficking in persons, specifically forced prostitution and forced labor, including the forced begging of children. Gjakmarrja (literally "blood-taking", i.e. "blood feud") or Hakmarrja ("revenge") refers to the social obligation to commit murder in order to salvage honor questioned by an earlier violation of any of the many-core morals of Albanian culture. It is said that revenge is a dish best served cold and in Albania, it can be served very cold indeed. Disputes known as blood feuds can span generations, sucking in descendants who had nothing to do with the original insult or murder. Whilst Albania has problems with drug trafficking, organised crime, and of course, corruption, it is not a safe country to live in.

Human Rights Watch Country Reports

written by an asylum seeker from Albanian