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Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, 13-14 Febr. 2013 Juridical and political aspects regarding the minority of the Makedon-Armâns in Albania.

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Presentation on theme: "Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, 13-14 Febr. 2013 Juridical and political aspects regarding the minority of the Makedon-Armâns in Albania."— Presentation transcript:

1 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr Juridical and political aspects regarding the minority of the Makedon-Armâns in Albania and how they enjoy all the rights granted by the European and international norms Yiani Mantsu Makedon Armân Council

2 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr Makedon-Armâns no other European people known under so many names:  “Aromân”- Romania (taken ever: Aromanian, Aroumain, Aromune, Arumano, Arumeno, etc.)  Vlach (Vlleh / “Çoban ”) – Albania  Vlach (Helino-Vlach) – Greece  Vlasi – R. of Macedonia  Cincar (Zinzar) – Serbia and Bulgaria  Mazedo-Romanen – Germany  Armân / Makedon-Armân – self definition = identifies their native space, the ancient Macedonia

3 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr The continuity thesis about their origins (supported by the most historians and linguistic scientists – excepting the Romanian linguistic scientists )  descends directly from the Romanized population of ancient Macedonia (including Thessaly and Epirus)  168 BC / 148 BC – Romanizing process years before Dacia (present Romania) was occupied by the Romans  the ancient Macedonia (including Thessaly and Epirus), is the birth area of Makedon-Armân Language > 1,5 mill. p.  The first document of Makedon-Armân language are the words “Torna, torna, fratre!” (Turn back, turn back, brother), dating 587 / Byzantium, chronicle of the monk Theophanes)

4 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr The cultural movement of Moschopolis  Moschopolis: to inhabitants, most of them Makedon-Armâns (Johann Thunmann: “everyone in the city spoke Armân, many also spoke Greek, the language used for commerce”)  the birthplace of the Makedon-Armân enlightenment  the movement was an initial beginning of the European spirit in the Balkans  Moschopolis gave birth to a multicultural movement  in 1813, in Vienna was published by Michael Bojadjchi – the first Modern Grammar in the Balkans – Armân,Greek and German language – an “official document of a language of a European people”

5 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr. 2013

6 The critical moment in their history  the second Balkan War (1912) and Bucharest Treaty 1913  the establishment of the national states at the beginning of 20-th century  the lifestyle of the Makedon-Armâns was totally disturbed by the political and social changes in the Balkans  a lot of residual effects in contemporary politics, especially concerning the Makedon-Armân people  the “Armân” subject was always a controversial subject between Greece and Romania  Greek Academy: the Armâns = part of the Greek people  Romanian Academy: the Armâns = part of the Romanian people  the truth: neither Greek nor Romanian = different from any other Balkan people, with deep roots in the Ancient Macedonia

7 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr Council of Europe and the Reccomendation 1333 /97  the most imp. achievement for the Armâns in their modern history  the Council of Europe encouraged the Balkan states to support their language in the fields of education, religion and the media  have supported the adoption of this Recommendation and therefore, implicitly, recognized the existence of the Armân people  Albanian authorities did not make any steps to implement the Recommendation to prevent the imminent disappearance of Armân language and culture  merely supporting the activities of some folk groups does not mean supporting as Rec. provided:  education in their mother tongue, religious services in their mother tongue, newspapers, magazines, radio and television programmes in their mother tongue  associations are not able to cover the fundamental needs in the various fields of the language and culture

8 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr Makedon-Armân Council  Makedon-Armân communities from Balkan countries and diaspora established in October 2005 the Makedon-Armân Council  to assure coordination, collaboration and fulfillment of all initiatives contributing to the preservation and promotion of their language, traditions and cultural values  organized a lot of events in the Balkan countries where the Armâns live:  Great Assembly in Moschopolis / Voskopoje (Albania), in 2010  Great Assembly in Krushevo / Republic of Macedonia, in 2012  a lot of cultural activities (in Albania, Greece, Romania, R. of Macedonia)  attended international congresses, conferences, seminars and forums on minority issues (UNO Geneva, London University, Fryske Akademy Leeuwarden / Netherlands, Lorient (Bretagne) / France, etc)

9 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr Salient juridical and political issues regarding the Makedon-Armâns in Albania  Albanian State-Reports submitted to FCNM:  the minority of Armâns / Aromanians was described as a “livestock nomadic population”(?)  discriminating treatment, or an attempt to marginalization  practiced transhumant pastoralism, which has nothing to do with nomadism  Analysis of all submitted Albanian State-Reports, focused on three salient juridical and political aspects regarding the Armân minority:  national or linguistic minority  minority language education  census on minorities

10 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr National or linguistic minority  Albanian authorities make a strict difference between national minorities and linguistic minorities = reason for discriminating or marginalization of a non-recognized linguistic minority as a national minority  This classification leads implicitly to a different treatment in enjoying of certain rights by persons belonging each of these linguistic minorities  The refuse is based on the assumption that they have no “motherland” or “kin-state”  In Albania, the Makedon-Armâns represent in fact a traditional national minority, an autochthonous minority = an issue which has to be re-examined and be taken into consideration by the Albanian authorities

11 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr Minority language education  the change in the political systems in Southeastern-Europe and HR changes in Europe - brought the freedom of assertion and promotion of the identity of each people  every Armân living in Albania is naturally bilingual and exercises dual ethno-cultural identity  education in their own language within the public system and within the Monday-through-Friday educational time = an immediate solution  lack of support to their language in the fields of education, religion and the media (Radio, TV, etc.)  lack of reaction to the several requests for dialogue-meetings made by Makedon-Armân Council  Albanian authorities opens a “free line” for Romanian authorities: the recognition of the status of Romanian minority to the Armâns from Albania(?)

12 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr Census on minorities  census on minorities enables the persons belonging to national or ethnic minorities to assert their ethnic identity  a fair census on minorities is an essential right in any democracy  statistical data on minorities is also a determinant factor for design of policies in the relation to national and ethnic-linguistic minorities  the percentage of national minorities (including ethnic-linguistic minorities) = 1,4 % :  the media has not paid enough attention to inform the minorities  information tools (newspapers and radio-television operators) not available  information on census in their own language, were missing  responsible authorities on census on minorities did not cooperate with minority associations  State Committee for Minorities not enough involved  preparation of persons belonging to minotity groups to be self involved in census activities, was missing  the result of census could be best supplemented by rigorous studies on minorities

13 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr Conclusions  A clear State-minority policy is necessary, more than even  Submitted State-Reports to FCNM do not contain enough substance and do mostly not reflect the real existing problems of the national or ethnic-linguistic minorities  Makedon-Armâns, represent in fact an autochthonous minority an issue which has to be re-examined and be taken into consideration by the Albanian authorities  fair-mindedness to all minorities, independently from their minority status, are to be expected from Albanian authorities

14 Yiani Mantsu-Conference on Minorities, Tirana, Febr THANK YOU FOR YOUR ATTENTION!


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