Albania proclaims the Independence from the Ottoman Empire

Today on the 28th of November in 1912 CE, southeast European country Albania proclaimed its independence from the Ottoman Empire. The Ottoman rule in Albania collapsed when the Ottoman troops were defeated by the Balkan coalition (Serbia, Greece, Bulgaria, and Montenegro) during the First Balkan War (1912-1913).

1st Prime Minister of Albania Ismail Qemali proclaiming Albanian Independence in Vlorë, on November 28, 1912. Other delegates of the National Congress can also be seen with him on the balcony.

The Ottoman conquest of the Albanian territories was a process that started in the 14th century when competing Albanian noble families fell back on Ottoman military support to stand up against their opponents.

In 1389 CE, Ottoman Sultan Murad I defeated the Serbians in the Battle of Kosovo, which weakened Serbia as a political and military power in the Balkans. Soon, the conquest of Skopje (1391) finally enabled the Ottomans to bring the Albanian territories under their control.

In 1402 CE, Sultan Bayezid I was defeated by Timur in the Battle of Ankara. This Ottoman defeat disrupted the process of Albian conquest. But the consolidation of Ottoman rule under Sultan Mehmed I reestablished the dominant position of the Ottomans with the 1417 conquest of Valona (present-day Vlorë) and Berat.

After these conquests, the Ottomans established an administrative unit called the Albanian Sanjak (sancak-i Arvanid) made up of the western areas of southern and middle Albania. The Ottoman armies soon conquered the towns of Kruja (in 1478) and Shkodra (in 1479).

By the peace treaty of 1479, Venice had to abandon its possessions in Albania to the Ottoman Empire. Thus, Albania became part of the Ottoman Empire until 1912 CE.

Sources:
The History of Albania (A Brief Survey), Kristo Frashëri
The Ottoman Empire, Halil İnalcık

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