Prishtina’s main square, which is a boulevard, stretching from the Assembly of Kosovo all the way to the Grand Hotel, is a quirky one. Throughout its length, there are sections which are known by different names. Directly opposite the Assembly you’ll find Dr. Ibrahim Rugova’s statue, a little further down, next to the Government Building, you’ll find the imposing statue of Gjergj Kastrioti – Skenderbeu, further down still – it is Nene Tereza (Mother Tereza) and close by the Grand Hotel is the statue of Zahir Pajaziti. All of them are revered national heroes, with the first three also internationally known.
What is lesser known and visible is the little plaque, next to the Assembly’s entrance. Modest and discreet, the plaque commemorates the tragic legacy of the 1999 armed conflict – the missing people. Over one-thousand-six hundred people are still missing, and their fate may never be fully disclosed.
As difficult as this may be, I encourage you to see the plaque and then ask permission from the Assembly to visit the installation art for the missing. The somewhat narrow corridor which houses the installation is lined in photos of the missing and quotes from their families. As you walk through the corridor, you’ll be walking under thousands of dangling keys, each representing one person. Personally, I found the experience very humbling. It drove me to think about the difficult history of the Balkans. We are the region of blood and honey.
P.S. The installation was designed by Eliza Hoxha, a multi-talented artist.