Naime Maçastena Sherifi

Pristina | Date: March 4, 2022 | Duration: 84 minutes

But, no, I wasn’t part of the organizing [body]. I was only a participant like all the other citizens. I remember that on March 26 [1981], when the most difficult student demonstrations took place at the square in Pristina, and after the demonstration took place, I went out in the city with my father and saw the square in a terrible condition. I mean, I saw people’s hair on the ground, heels, people’s belongings. They beat up any student they caught, they beat them up so badly that it was horrible just to think about it. And then, during the April 1st demonstration at our school, I was a student of the Meto Bajraktari elementary school, so all of our group were students of the same class and the Meto Bajraktari school. They isolated our school that day, they said… we were in class. They said, ‘You shouldn’t go out.’ And among other things, during our first class for the day, the students from Emin Duraku school came with flags, they came in an organized manner shouting in the school yard and they called us too. So, they invited us to join the demonstrations. Since our doors were locked and the teachers were supervising the halls, we found another way, we found a window on the first floor through which we all went out. […] That group of children with the flags, mainly young 14-15-16 year old students, we then [together] joined a bigger group of demonstrators.

Anita Susuri (interviewer), Renea Begolli (Camera)

Naime Maçastena Sherifi was born in 1968 in Istanbul, Turkey. She graduated in 1995 from the Faculty of Philology, in the Albanian Language and Literature Department at the University of Pristina. From 1994 to 2001, she worked in the Council for the Protection of Human Rights and Freedoms in Pristina. Due to her political activity, she was arrested in October of 1984 and sentenced to six months of juvenile probation. She was the executive director of the Center for the Protection of Women and Children until 2016. She currently works as an official in the Governmental Commission for the Recognition of the Status of Former Prisoners, Convicts and the Politically Persecuted. Currently, she lives with her family in Pristina.