Rilindja Demokratike

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Rilindja Demokratike
Democratic Rebirth
Rilindja Demokratike logo.svg
RD 27 Maj 2011.jpg
Rilindja Demokratike on 6 November 2013
Type Daily Newspaper
Format Berliner
Owner(s) Democratic Party of Albania
Editor-in-chief Bledi Kasmi
Founded 5 January 1991; 26 years ago (1991-01-05) [1]
Political alignment Part of Democratic Party of Albania
Language Albanian
Headquarters Tirana
Circulation Present: 3.000 (2014)[2]
Record: 125.000 (1991)[3]
Website Rilindja Demokratike

Rilindja Demokratike (English: Democratic Rebirth and short RD) is an Albanian newspaper founded and continuously published in Tirana. Rilindja Demokratike is the official newspaper of the Democratic Party of Albania.[2] Its chief editor is Bledi Kasmi. Its first publication was on 5 January 1991 and was the first free newspaper since the Fall of communism in Albania, while it functioned against the state newspaper Zëri i Popullit what was the newspaper of the Communist Party and nowadays of the Socialist Party.[4] RD still preserve the same values as on its first day of publication and is one of the most respected newspapers of the Albanian media, this is because its first issue was actually the first free media coverage in 46 years.[5] RD was also the first media in Albania that openly criticized the regime of Enver Hoxha.[5][6]

RD still helds the record of most published newspaper in Albania, with a circulation of 125.000 copies in 1991.[3] Together with Gazeta 55 it is the only right winged news paper, but RD is considered the main opposition newspaper.[7]


First copy of RD newspaper held by some people on 5 January 1991.

Huge political reforms took place in Albania, and the Communist regime in power was forced to allow small opposition groups in its political system. After the fall of communism in Albania the Democratic Party (DP) on 11 December 1990 no free media was published in Albania. On 5 January 1991 the first issue of RD was published in Albania,[8] ordered by Sali Berisha, at that leader of the DP.[5] RD started to function against the state newspaper Zëri i Popullit what was the newspaper of the Communist Party and nowadays of the Socialist Party. Even after the creation of the first free media in Albania, the left winged media continued to criticize RD and considered this newspaper of an "enemy of the party." [5]

In the beginning, RD was published twice a week, but was later converted to a daily newspaper. The circulation of the paper was in the beginning around 70-100 thousand copies, while people interested in the newspaper had to wait in lines to get a copy.[5] Its 2005 circulation was 10,000 copies, making it the third most read daily in the country.[9] In the first numbers RD oriented to the values of freedom, democracy, free market and anti-self-understanding. There were left pages to former politically persecuted and former owners, who by this action got for the first time in history a voice in the country.

The first words of the newspaper where "today, Rilindja Demokratike [Democratic Reborn] says its first words. This reborn has a big task and one of great importance. It has taken the duty to say the right things." It first issue was sold by the price of 1 Leke.



The newspaper is organized in seven sections, including the magazine

  1. Politics: Includes articles about the political situation of Albania.
  2. News: Includes non-political news of Albania.
  3. Economy & Social: Includes relevant economic news and on social topics
  4. Opinion: Includes Editorials and Opinion pieces.
  5. Features: Includes feature articles of the magazine
  6. Health: Includes newest medical findings and tips.
  7. Sport: Includes news that is sport related.


When referring to people, Rilindja Demokratike generally uses honorifics, rather than unadorned last names (except in the sports pages, Book Review and Magazine). In the early years it used a four-column format, but switched to five-column format.

Opinion pieces[edit]

One of the main elements of RD are the opinion pieces published daily. Usually, two opinion pages are published. Although the authors of the opinion pieces are not scheduled,[10] some of its main contributors are Bledi Kasmi,[11] Basir Çollaku,[12] Hamit Taka,[13] Vincent Triest[14] and Hyqmet Zane[10][15] for RD. It is interesting to notice that RD have been over the time a starting point for many politicians of the Democratic Party, like Astrid Patozi, Edi Paloka and Gent Strazimiri.

Web presence[edit]

Rilindja Demokratike has had a web presence since 2005. Accessing articles does not require registration. Only the front page can be downloaded in pdf-format, the papers articles can be accessed only on the website. Since 2013, RD has a new website.

Editor in chief[edit]

The first editor was Frrok Çupi, who left in June 1991. After Cupi left, Napoleon Roshi took the lead of RD. He was a former director of Foreign Radio and former journalist at "Union", then Mitro Çela, will lead the newspaper till the end of 1991 until the successful campaign of 22 March 1992.

In April 1992, Bashkim Trenova was the editor in chief until the end of 1994, which was took by Lorenc Ligori, spokesman for the Democratic Party in that time. In the autumn of 1995 RD will be administered by Lazer Stani until March 12, 1997, after which will be overtaken by Xhevat Mustafa, who will remain in office until May 1997, when he was replaced by Astrit Patozi, former editor of Albania. Patozi ran the newspaper until July 2005, when he would be elected a member of the Democratic Party in the Parliament. From this time onwards newspaper RD was directed by journalist Bledi Kasmi.[5]


RD is often criticized by the left winged media in the country, because it is the official organ of the Democratic Party.[16] Since creation of the first free media in Albania, the left winged media continued to criticize RD and considered this newspaper of an "enemy of the party." [5] Nowadays, together with Gazeta 55 it is the only right-winged media in Albania.

Incidents and legal cases[edit]

  • Mujo Bucpapaj, a journalist of RD was shot and injured on 20 August 1998. He was shot down by a person that moved with a police vehicle. Genc Pollo, accused the government of the Socialist Party for the responsibility of this incident.[17]
  • During the opposition of the Democratic Party in 2000, 3 journalists where legally persecuted by the Albanian justice system. Astrit Patozi, Redin Hafizi and Shemsi Peposhi were persecuted for several articles published in RD.[18] Hafizi fled to the United States to receive political assylum.[18]
  • Erion Veliaj startet a legal case against RD. He lost this case in court.[19]
  • On 2 December 2012 an incident happened between Edi Rama and Vincent Triest. After the incident the social media use of Rama was contested, because he is reported to insult on twitter after his ideas where rejected.[20][21]
  • On 16 April 2013 Telnis Skuqi got threaten to get killed after he published an investigative article about the drug planes in Albania.[22]
  • On 19 April 2013 Telnis Skuqi got threatened by an unknown attacker. Someone threw the cut off head of a goat in front of his house.[23]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [1] Archived July 3, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ a b "Albania: The Cost of Speech: Violations of Media Freedom in Albania" (PDF). Human Rights Watch (HRW) ( June 2002. Vol. 14, No. 5 (D). 
  3. ^ a b "Frrok Çupi: Shtypi i pavarur, ka qenë një legjendë". Noa. 5 January 2012. 
  4. ^ Elez Biberaj (1999). Albania in transition: the rocky road to democracy. Westview Press. ISBN 978-0813336886. Retrieved 9 November 2013. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g "5 janar 1991, Rilindja Demokratike e shtypit të lirë". Gazeta Tribuna. 11 January 2011. 
  6. ^ Robert Elsie: Albanian print free, not TV or radio, Nieman Reports 50.2 (Summer 1996), p.78
  7. ^ Albania's Second Transition; Borchgrevink, Aage
  8. ^ Van Kornegay (1995). "On the Road to a Free Press in Albania: Evaluating Outside Aid Efforts" (PDF). The University of Georgia. Retrieved 23 January 2014. 
  9. ^ "Albania". Press Reference. Retrieved 13 September 2014. 
  10. ^ a b "Editorials". Gazeta Rilindja Demokratike. 
  11. ^ Bledi Kasmi
  12. ^ Rilindja Demokratike, Basir Collaku
  13. ^ Rilindja Demokratike, Hamit Taka
  14. ^ Rilindja Demokratike, Vincent Triest
  15. ^ Hyqmet Zane
  16. ^ "Numri i parë i gazetës RD, premtimet ndaj shqiptarëve dhe përshëndetja e Agollit". Gazeta Tema. 17 January 2008. Retrieved 9 November 2013. 
  17. ^ Index on Censorship, Volume 26, Issue 5, 1997 Special Issue: Banned Poetry
  18. ^ a b Albania: The Cost of Speech: Violations of Media Freedom in Albania. 14. New York: Human Rights Watch. June 2002. pp. 35–44. 
  19. ^ Veliaj padit për shpifje 4 gazeta proqeveritare Agjencia. 29 April 2010. Retrieved 23 January 2014.
  20. ^ "Debatet e Ramës në Twitter "..derr, bajgë e ferrit, llaxore"". 1 December 2012. Retrieved 17 October 2013. 
  21. ^ Gazeta Rilindja Demokratike, Rama ne Twitter: Derr, bajge, llaxore, page 2, Date: 02 December 2012
  22. ^ Kërcënohet me jetë gazetari Telnis Skuqi
  23. ^ Kokë dhie e prerë para banesës, kërcënohet gazetari Telnis Skuqi

External links[edit]