Jonada Avida: Red paint thrown at government building amid protest over girl’s death

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Protesters have thrown red paint on Albania’s interior ministry building after the death of a seven-year-old girl.

Citizens have called for justice and the resignations of senior officials after Jonada Avida died after colliding  with the boat of an off-duty police officer.

Avida — who was visiting Albania from the UK — died while swimming at Himara, southern Albania.

A regional police chief was dismissed after the incident on 2 August. He has also been charged with indirect intentional homicide.

The number of demonstrations in Tirana over the girl’s death has grown in recent days, with calls for the dismissal of tourism minister Mirela Kumbaro and interior minister Bedar Çuçi.

Relatives of Avida have called on Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama to answer their demands.

“We will continue to seek justice for Jonada in international institutions,” said Ilirjana Kuçana, a teacher and relative.

“We do this for the other Jonadas.”

Rama had said on Twitter that the girl’s death had “shocked young and old and created a serious feeling of concern”.

“Albania’s State Police is taking all measures to react much more strongly to the challenge of guaranteeing legal order not only in road traffic but also in water traffic,” he added.

“I wish once again that justice will give the most extreme punishment to the culprit for this tragedy.”