From: Alice Taylor
Afghan Refugees Open Photography Exhibition in Tirana

An exhibition of photographs taken by Afghan refugees in Albania has opened in Tirana.

Entitled “Albania from my Eyes” it has opened at the Tirana Art Gallery and comprises the work of some 20 individuals.

The Albanian government opened its doors to more than 2400 Afghan refugees after the Taliban seized control of the country in summer 2021. After being processed in Tirana, they have since been housed in resorts in Durres and Shengjin. Around 300 have left, but thousands remain in limbo with no idea when they will leave.

A backlog in paperwork and a lack of communication from the United States government has left many feeling hopeless.

To process their trauma and to deal with the uncertainty, some have opened sewing groups, others a restaurant, and some have taken photos and created art.

Madina Talash told the AP that “this exhibition shows how other people see the beauty of Albania,” adding that “we could not live there anymore. Schools closed for girls and for a girl living there was so difficult.”

Photographer Firroz Mashoof said, “I’m trying my best to forget my past back in Afghanistan, and I want to tell the world that Afghans will never be silenced.”