Zyrafete Berisha Lushaj

Pristina | Date: November 17, 2021 | Duration: 75 minutes

It was the anniversary of the ‘81 demonstrations. I lived on campus, at the Student Center, and while on campus, of course, nothing happened without me knowing about it. I was prepared for something to happen, I was prepared because my brother was also part of the Movement and I knew that if something happened, I knew what I would say, I know where I am and I know well the reasons behind it. 

[…] I went out with friends in the yard in front of the dorm and met my brother. I met many of my friends, many university colleagues. I did not know that we were being photographed [by the police], each movement was photographed, such severe police measures. So, they tracked us down and after a short while we were arrested, my brother and friends. The three of us at once were arrested. And that’s when the torture started while we were under investigation and the sentence in prison was being decided.

It was a very, very terrible period, because you had to be aware of what you were saying. My concern was protecting others, I was not concerned for myself. […] But, I remember that my brother who was three years older than me, was more courageous and said to me, ‘Don’t say a word!’ I remember only this.

Anita Susuri (Interviewer), Renea Begolli (Camera)

Zyrafete Berisha Lushaj was born in 1962 in the village of Pozhar, Municipality of Deçan. In 1982, she enrolled at the Faculty of Philology – Department of Albanian Language and Literature at the University of Prishtina. Mrs. Berisha-Lushaj worked for five years in education and volunteered for a year at the City Library. She is a mother of five and lives with her family in Deçan.