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26th-Jun-2008 07:55 pm - Sworn Virgins
Interesting article on gender roles and the Albanian custom of sworn virgins.

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Source: New York Times
19th-Oct-2005 01:17 pm - Blood feuds blight Albanian lives
By Majlinda Mortimer and Anca Toader BBC News, Shkodra, Albania

The centuries-old custom of blood feuds - responsible for thousands of Albanian deaths in the past - has started blighting lives in the Balkan nation again in recent years.

The feuds are particularly prevelant in the Albanian district of Shkodra, and the surrounding districts of Puke and Malesia e Madhe, where some families live in fear of blood vengeance.

The law and order vacuum created by the collapse of communism sent many Albanians back to the ancient customary laws of their tribal roots. These laws include the right to murder to avenge an earlier killing.

Blood feuds have existed in Albania for more than 3,000 years. They are regulated by the customary law known as the "Kanun" - used by Albanians during the centuries of foreign occupation, when there was no central authority.

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