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Albania History Timeline

1900s continued
  • (1955) Albania was a founding member of the Warsaw Pact
  • (1960) Albania sided with China in the Sino-Soviet split; Soviet economic support to Albania curtailed; Chinese aid increased
  • (1961) Enver Hoxha broke with Nikita Kruschev over ideological rift; relations severed; Soviet aid to Albania ended; Albania found ally in China
  • (1967) Violent clampdown on religious activity; Albania was declared the world's first atheist state
  • (1968) Albania officially withdrew from Warsaw Pact
  • (1968) Albania condemned the Soviet-led invasion of Czechoslovakia
  • (1978) China terminated all economic and military aid to Albania
  • (1985) Hoxha died, succeeded by Ramiz Alia
  • (1989) Communist rule in Eastern Europe collapsed
  • (1990) Independent political parties formed
  • (1990) Albanians granted right to travel abroad; thousands fled through western embassies
  • (1991) First opposition newspaper published
  • (1991) Ramiz Alia re-elected president; new government headed by Vilson Ahmeti
  • (1992) Democratic Party won elections; party leader, Sali Berisha, elected president; Aleksander Meksi prime minister
  • (1993) Fatos Nano and Ramiz Alia convicted and jailed for corruption
  • (1996) Democratic Party general election victory tainted by accusations of fraud
  • (1997) Leka, son of late King Zog, returned from exile in bid to take throne; referendum on restoration of monarchy failed; Leka accused of trying to stir up an armed insurrection; fled back into exile
  • (1998) Azem Hajdari, prominent opposition Democratic Party politician, shot dead; violent street protest; Prime Minister Fatos Nano quit; Pandeli Majko became new prime minister
  • (1999) NATO air strikes against Yugoslav military targets caused mass refugee exodus into Albania
  • (1999) Majko resigned; Iler Meta became Europe's youngest prime minister
2000s
  • (2001) Albania and Yugoslavia re-established diplomatic relations broken off during the Kosovo crisis; Meta headed a new coalition government; rift widened between Meta and socialist party chairman, Fatos Nano
  • (2002) Meta resigned as prime minister; Pandell Majko replaced Meta as prime minister
  • (2002) Parliament elected Alfred Moisiu president after Nano and Berisha reached compromise; socialist party ruled to merge the roles of premier and party chairman; Nano elected premier for the fourth time
  • (2003) Albania and EU began Stabilisation and Association Agreement talks
  • (2004) Opposition staged angry demonstrations in Tirana; demanded Nano's resignation; protest against government for failure to improve living standards
  • (2006) Stabilisation and Association Agreement signed with EU
  • (2007) President George W. Bush was first U.S. leader to visit Albania
  • (2007) Parliament elected ruling party chairman Bamir Topi president
  • (2008) Defense Minister Fatmir Mediu resigned over arms depot blasts that killed 16, damaged Tirana airport
  • (2009) Albania officially joined NATO; formally applied for membership with European Union
  • (2009) Sali Berisha's center-right Democratic Party won parliamentary elections by a narrow margin; protests held against alleged vote-rigging in 2009 election
  • (2010) Socialist leader Edi Rama called for a campaign of civil disobedience to continue until government agreed to a partial recount of 2009 election
  • (2010) More than 12,000 people forced to evacuate due to flooding
  • (2010) EU rejected request for Albania's candidate status, eased visa requirements
  • (2011) Anti-government protests took place in cities around Albania, following 18 months of political conflict over alleged electoral fraud, four killed
  • (2011) Parliament stripped Dritan Prifti of immunity from prosecution of corruption allegations
  • (2011) Ilan Meta investigated over deal to build power station
  • (2012) Two political prisoners set themselves on fire in protest when authorities refused to award compensation, one died
  • (2013) Socialist Party won general elections
  • (2013) Edi Rama became prime minister


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