Kiço Mustaqi

Kiço Mustaqi (22 March 1938 – 24 January 2019) was a former Albanian general and politician of the Albanian Party of Labour. He served as Chief of the General Staff of Albanian People's Army, the last Minister of Defence of the communist era in Albania, and was a member of the Politburo.

Kiço Mustaqi
Kiço Mustaqi.jpeg
Minister of Defence
In office
22 February 1991 – 10 May 1991
PresidentRamiz Alia
Prime MinisterFatos Nano
Preceded byProkop Murra
Succeeded byNdriçim Karakaçi
Personal details
Born(1938-03-22)March 22, 1938
Pecë, Sarandë, Albania
DiedJanuary 24, 2019(2019-01-24) (aged 80)
Tirana, Albania
Political partyParty of Labour of Albania


Mustaqi was born in Peçë, a village of the Sarandë District (today's Finiq municipality). He was of Greek ethnicity.[1][2] He left the village at the age of 13, moving initially in Kuçovë to follow the school there, and later entered the Skanderbeg Military High School in Tirana where he graduated as a military officer in 1960, at the eve of the Soviet-Albanian split. He immediately joined the Albanian People's Army, initially serving in a remote military establishment, and then returning to Tirana where he worked for 4 years at the same military school he graduated from. During 1964-1967, he studied at the "Mehmet Shehu Military Academy". He worked in later in Tropojë by the end of 1966, Chief of Staff of the Offensive Brigade and later Commander of the Offensive Brigade in 1968-1969, following in Vau i Dejës as Commander of the Infantry Brigade. In 1974, he became Director of the Military Praparation in the Ministry of Defence. Two years later, Commander of the Military Command of Tirana. Following three years he served as Operative Commander of the Albanian Army, and Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Albanian Army. In 1982, he became Chief of the General Staff, replacing Veli Llakaj.[3]

In 1974, Mustaqi was selected for the first time as a representative in the People's Assembly as part of the eighth legislative term until the 12th legislature in 1992.[4] During mid-80's, he was appointed First Deputy Minister of Defence.[5] During the 9th Congress of the Party in November 1986, he succeeded as candidate-member of the Politburo of the Party of Labour of Albania,[6] and eventually rose in July 1990 as member of the Politburo, where he remained until June 1991.[5]

On 9 July 1990, he became the successor of Prokop Murra as Minister of Defense in the government of Prime Minister Adil Çarçani. He held this position until 22 February 1991, but was elected again in the successive government of Fatos Nano until May 12, 1991.[7][8][9][10] During this time, he sought in the course of political events and the upcoming collapse of communism to a closer association with the actual military to the political leadership, so as to preserve the power of the Party.[5] However, after emerging riots in February 1991 by the democratic opposition, Mustaqi was replaced by a civilian politician at the same time with the Minister of Internal Affairs Hekuran Isai, of Foreign Affairs Reis Malile, and of Justice Enver Halili.[11] Mustaqi emigrated soon-after in Greece, and worked there simply as a premises security personnel for a private security company in Athens, before returning to Albania together with his two sons.[12]

In June 1996, a special court was brought in Tirana against him (in absence). He was accused of inciting a military coup-d'etat in the Military Academy of Tirana on 22 February 1991. Co-defendants were the commander Arsen Stroka, and the former political commissar of the Military Academy Ksenofon Coni. Allegedly, the defendants were responsible having commanded on 20 February 1991 the students of the Military Academy an intervention against the crackdown on riots that spread after the fall of the statue of Enver Hoxha. Three people were killed while 37 others were injured at that time.[13] In addition, he was accused of corruption and espionage on behalf of Greece.[14] On July 19, 1996, he finally received a prison sentence of five years,[15] which he never served anyway.[16]

Further readingEdit

  • Kiço Mustaqi Minsitri i Mbrojtjes midis dy sistemeve (Kiço Mustaqi, the Minister of Defence between two systems), Albert Zholi, Botimet Toena, Tirana, 2011. ISBN 9789994316960
  • Dosja 1990-1991, dëshmia e Kiço Mustaqit (Dossier 1990-1991, the testimonial of Kiço Mustaqi), Robert Goro, Alb-Diorasis, Athens, 2004. OCLC 58447784


  1. ^ Richard F. Staar (25 November 1991). East-Central Europe and the USSR. Palgrave Macmillan UK. pp. 217–. ISBN 978-1-349-12898-3.
  2. ^ Wesson, Robert (1983). Yearbook on International Communist Affairs. Hoover Institution Press. p. 239. ISBN 978-0-8179-7861-7. Kiço Mustaqi, for the "dirty" work of cleansing the armed forces of bad influences and for tightening party control. Mustaqi was born in the Sarandes district and is of Greek origin.
  3. ^ Albert Zholi (2011), Kiço Mustaqi Minsitri i Mbrojtjes midis dy sistemeve [Kiço Mustaqi, the Minister of Defence between two systems] (in Albanian), Tirana: Toena, p. Preface, ISBN 9789994316960
  4. ^ [1][permanent dead link] - Republika e Shqipërisë KUVEND. Tiranë 2005
  5. ^ a b c Albania Political Control (April 1992)
  6. ^ Elez Biberaj: Albania's Economic Reform Dilemma, in: THE WORLD TODAY (Oktober 1987)
  7. ^ Miranda Vickers,James Pettifer: Albania: from anarchy to a Balkan identity, S. 296, ISBN 1850652791, 1997
  8. ^ 3 3. Kabinett Çarçani
  9. ^ Albanian Defense Ministers
  10. ^ "Ministers of Defense of Albania (1953-1991)". Archived from the original on 2015-09-23. Retrieved 2015-06-19.
  11. ^ NEW YORK TIMES: New Opposition Paper Appears in Albania (11. Februar 1991)
  12. ^ Kiço Mustaqi: Si u shmang gjakderdhja në Shkollën e Bashkuar në ’91-shin (in Albanian), Gazeta Panorama Online, 16 March 2011
  14. ^ J. F. Brown: The OMRI annual survey of Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, Open Media Research Institute, S. 145, ISBN 1563249243, 1996
  15. ^ OMRI DAILY DIGEST: ALBANIAN COMMUNIST ERA OFFICIALS SENTENCED FOR 1991 SHOOTING (23. Juli 1996) Archived 2015-06-19 at the Wayback Machine
  16. ^ "Kiço Mustaqi, ministri që punoi 16 vjet roje objekti në Athinë (in Albanian)". Archived from the original on 2015-06-19. Retrieved 2015-06-19.