Second Albanian dissident torches self over payment row
October 11, 2012 3:56 AM EST
An Albanian former political prisoner set himself on fire on Wednesday, the second dissident to do so in two days after the government ruled out talks on their demands for compensation for suffering under communism.
Television footage showed Lirak Bejko, 47, pour petrol on himself and set his trousers on fire, before friends and policemen rushed to put out the flames with blankets.
Doctors said he was in critical condition, with third-degree burns to his limbs and face. Gjergj Ndreca, who set himself on fire on Monday, is also recovering in hospital.
Bejko, 47, and Ndreca are among 20 former dissidents imprisoned during the communist era who have been fasting for 19 days to draw attention to their demands.
The government says they have already received compensation. Prime Minister Sali Berisha said his party had granted former political prisoners $100 million (62.4 million pounds) in cash and privatisation vouchers.
Skender Tufa, the head of the prisoners association, said the dissidents have agreed to carry out other "extreme protests", but did not give details.
"These are very grave acts, but...we have nothing else to lose. We the former prisoners are corpses walking around without dignity," he said.
(Reporting By Benet Koleka, Editing by Diana Abdallah)
Most Popular Slideshows
- Top 5 Richest Tennis Athletes
- Angelina Jolie & Brad Pitt Heads to Malta For New Movie After A Whirlwind French Wedding [PHOTOS]
- 2014 US Open Update (Day 4 - Men's Singles): Murray, Djokovic, Raonic and Isner Advance to 3rd Round [PHOTOS]
- Kate Middleton’s Mom Accused Of Being A Social Climber, Prince George Not Seen By Relatives
Join the Conversation
- Tourre on stand says email in SEC case 'not accurate'
- Syrian authorities blocking access to needy in Homs - Red Cross
- Faith in European Union at low ebb, EU poll says
- Former UBS banker gets 18 months, $1 million fine, for muni bid-rigging scheme
- U.S. judge halts challenges to Detroit's bankruptcy bid
- Apple iWatch is iPhone 6 Accessory on Sept 19 Release Date: 6 Confirmed Specs & Features
- iPhone 6 Release Date Update: 4.7-Inch Model Scores 65.8% In Screen-To-Size Ratio; A Surprise Entry Scales Top Spot [List Attached]
- Canada Vs Russia War Erupts Via Twitter on Russia-Not Russia Maps
- Product Recall Alert: Hewlett-Packard Pulls Out 6M Power Cords from US, Canada Over Fire Hazard Concerns, Australia Also Affected
- ISIS Wants $6.6M and Release of Aafia Siddiqui in Exchange of Head of Female US Humanitarian Aid Worker, 1st American Fighting for Jihadis Dead
- James Foley Torture Involves CIA Waterboarding Technique
- Ukraine Ceasefire Looks Remote As Putin Talks Tough At Meeting With Poroshenko