Bujar Nishani is the 6th (incumbent) President of Albania, having assumed the office on 24 July 2012. Formerly, he served the country as Minister of the Interior (2011 – 2012 and 2007 – 2009) and Minister of Justice (2009 – 2011).
Early Life and Education
Bujar Nishani was born on 29 September 1966 in Durres, Albania. After completing high school in Durres, he went to the Military Academy “Skanderbeg” until 1988. Then, Nishani did his Master’s degree from the Naval Postgraduate School, US. Nishani also earned a degree in law from the University of Tirana.
Bujar Nishani (50 years old) is married to Odeta Nishani (47 years old), a civil and construction engineering graduate, since 1994. The couple has two children: Fiona Nishani and Ersi Nishani. Ersi is 21 and Fiona is 17 now.
Incumbent President Bujar Nishani started off his career in 1988 as a teacher at Scanderbeg Military Academy. Three years later, he joined Democratic Party of Albania subsequently got appointed as the Director of Foreign Affairs (Ministry of Defense) in 1993. The following year, he headed the office of NATO relations. In 1996, Nishani became one of the cabinet members at the Ministry of Defense. He largely contributed to Euro-Atlantic Military Men and Women Forum.
As the party suffered a major loss in 1997 elections, Nishani also has to remain passive until 2001, when he got elected as the Secretary of Tirana Democratic Party Branch. In 2003, Nishani entered Tirana Municipal Council as a member and quickly progressed towards being the member of the Democratic Party National Council and Central Leadership by 2005.
Nishani consecutively got elected to the Albanian Parliament in 2005 and 2009 from Tirana 34. Between 2007 and 2009, he had a chance to take the seat of Minister of Justice. Starting on 17 September 2009, Nishani held the office of Minister of the Interior. He held the office until 2011 and again went back to the Ministry of Interior until 2012 when Albanian Assembly elected him to become the next President of Albania.
Under the capacity of a President, Bujar Nishani is largely focused on creating European integration and solving global challenges such as Islamic terrorism and radicalisation. To bring these strategies into effect, Nishani has made numerous visits and meetings with several heads of states. A year ago on February 14, 2016, he met US Secretary of State John Kerry in Tirana. Likewise, he also had diplomatic talks with Polish Prime Minister Beata Szydlo on 9 December 2016.
During these five years of presidency, Nishani has made four visits to the US for Sessions of the UN General Assembly. He missed the session in 2015. Besides the US, Nishani’s major visited states consist of European nations such as Austria, Croatia, Belgium, Bulgaria, France, and Turkey. On 21 December 2016, Nishani made his state visit to Istanbul and Ankara of Turkey. Last year, he also attended the Annual Conference on Cultural Diplomacy in Berlin, Germany.
Honors and Awards
- 2013 – Albania: Honorary Citizen of Libohova
- 2014 – Italy: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic
- 2015 – USA: Raoul Wallenberg Award
- 2016 – Albania: Honorary Citizen of Shkodër
- 2016 – 1st class Order of Stara Planina
- 2016 – Cross of Merit, Order pro-Merito Melitensi
Trump and Nishani
Both Nishani and his American counterpart Donald Trump being nation’s delegates to NATO, one’s stances adversely affect the other. Hence, it’s crucial that both of these presidents make up strong ties. However, looking at past statements of President Trump, it doesn’t seem as if he will like getting along with the NATO members.