|Kararname (resolutions) of the Committee for National Defence, signed in Prizren 1878, by 47 Muslim deputies (1878)
(resolutions) of the Prizren Committee for National Defence. Prizren, Ottoman Empire, June 10, 1878
Our league has come together to oppose any government other than that of the Sublime Porte and to defend our territorial integrity by all possible means.
It is our most earnest intention to preserve the imperial rights of our Lord, the irresponsible person of His Highness the Sultan. We will therefore regard as foes of our nation and fatherland all those who counteract this intention and cause a disturbance, as well as all those who endeavour to weaken the authority of the Government and those who assist in such endeavours, until they mend their ways, and we will eject from our territories those who make trouble for the loyal inhabitants of the country.
We will willingly accept delegates from other districts who wish to join our League and will register them in the national list as friends of the Government and the country.
In accordance with our noble religious law (sheriat), we will protect the lives, property and honour of our loyal non-Muslim compatriots as our own, but yet we will act against rebels and punished them according to circumstance and venue.
All expenditures for the troops to be mustered by the districts will be covered under directives to be issued. Auxiliary troops from abroad will be gratefully welcomed into our ranks.
In view of the situation in the Balkans, we will not allow any foreign troops to enter our territory. We will not recognize Bulgaria and do not even wish to hear its name mentioned. If Serbia does not agree to give up the regions it has occupied illegally, we will deploy volunteer corps (akindjiler) against it and do our utmost to bring about the return of these regions. We will do the same with Montenegro.
We will support our fellow countrymen and those faithful to the Government in the Balkans who have shown that they support our League. We will assist one another in times of need. There will be no lack of mutual support and understanding.
Should one district encounter opposition in carrying out the objectives of the League, the neighbouring districts will come to its aid and will provide requisite support to achieve the desired objectives.
Anyone who leaves our League, anyone who – God forbid – commits the crime of espionage against it, and anyone who does not obey the orders of his superiors, will be given the punishment he deserves.
Should the inhabitants of the districts that joined the League, whoever they be and whatever religion they follow, choose to leave our League, they may not go over to Serbia or Montenegro. Should anyone do so nonetheless, he will be declared a spy and will be punished according to the laws in force.
Anyone of us who has been entrusted with competencies from our League and does not carry out his duties properly, neglects them or absents himself from them, or who misuses his office or official power in any manner, or who behaves brutally or causes dishonour, will be publicly exposed and punished accordingly, and his property will be confiscated.
Marching orders for the troops, conscription, use of the forces and other such matters will be specified in special regulations to be set forth.
Great attention is to be paid to documents and written correspondence to ensure that these orders and directives are clearly followed.
It is understood that the Government may not interfere in the affairs of the League. Accordingly, the League will not interfere in the administrative affairs of the Government, unless the latter can be shown to have issued orders involving the use of force.
A copy of these resolutions will be presented wherever necessary.
In accordance with the covenant of the League that we deputies of the undaunted men of northern Albania, Epirus and Bosnia have contracted – men who have known nothing but arms since their birth and who are willing to shed their blood for the Empire, their nation and their fatherland - we have selected Prizren as the capital of the League, As soon as the League is functioning successfully, we will nevermore allow a tyrant to oppress us and the inhabitants of our districts. After us, this League will be taken over by our children and grandchildren. Whoever abandons it, will be treated as if he had abandoned our Islamic faith and will be the object of our curses and scorn. We pledge that we will carry out the provisions of our Resolutions faithfully and give witness thereto with our signatures.
- The deputy for Upper Dibra, Mirmiran Iljaz,
- The deputy for Gjakova, Mirmiran Abdullah,
- The deputy for Tetova, the noble Fevzi Rexhep,
- The deputy for Tetova, Mehmet Esat (seal missing),
- The deputy for Tetova, Hasan Masharnuredin, mirallaj,
- The deputy for Upper Dibra, the noble Mehmet Sadik,
- The deputy for Prizren, the noble Hajrulla Nursin,
- The deputy for Luma near Prizren, the noble Mehmet,
- The deputy for Mat, the noble Hasan Riza,
- The deputy for Ohrid, the nobel Mehmet Reshat,
- The deputy for Skopje, the noble Adburrahmen Sirri,
- The deputy for Skopje, the noble Mustafa Sabri,
- The deputy for Peja, the noble … Halil,
- The deputy for Lower Dibra, the noble Ahmet Sabri,
- The deputy for Mitrovica, the noble Osman Ali,
- The deputy for Prishtina, the noble Esseid Mehmet,
- The deputy for Yeni Pazar [Novi Pazar], Ali,
- The deputy for Yeni Pazar [Novi Pazar], Ejup,
- The deputy for Mitrovica, Osman Qahil [Qamil?],
- The deputy for Sjenica, Mustafa Abdu,
- The deputy for Sjenica, Masharnuredin Zejnelabedin,
- The deputy for Prizren, Murteza,
- The deputy for Tashlidja [Plevlja], the Musfti Esseid Mehmet Nuredin,
- The deputy for Prizren, Abdylhalim Nefi,
- The deputy for Prizren, Himi S[…],
- The deputy for Vushtrria, Hysein Shaip,
- The deputy for Gjakova, Mehmet,
- The deputy for Peja, Hamdi Shaban,
- The deputy for Dibra, Molla Iljaz,
- The deputy for Dibra, Bajram Masharnuredin,
- The deputy for Dibra, Enver Ismail Minhel [Binhel?]
- The deputy for Dibra, Mehmet
- The deputy for Tetova, Abdurreuf [Abdyl Reuf?],
- The deputy for Tetova, Sadik,
- The deputy for Tetova, Mehmet,
- The deputy for Gostivar, el-Haxhi Zylbehar,
- The deputy for Skopje, Esseid Mehmet Xheladin,
- The deputy for Skopje, Jashar,
- The deputy for Gjakova, Mehmet Kahreman,
- The deputy for Gjakova, Syleiman Vokshi [seal missing],
- The deputy for Peja, Zejnel,
- The deputy for Peja, Iljaz,
- The deputy for Peja, Sali,
- The deputy for Kërçova, Ahmet Syla,
- The deputy for Gjilan, Sahit,
- The deputy for Gjilan, Rashit,
- The deputy for Vushtrria, Kadri,
- The deputy for Vushtrria, Ilmi Abdurrahman,
- The deputy for Gucia, Ibrahim Lutfi Masharnuredin,
- The deputy for the Catholic population of Prizren [name and seal missing].
Source: HHStA, Vienna, Consulate of Shkodra, Note 64, AIH, A-VI-10, p. 73-77. Appendix to a report by Austro-Hungarian consul Jelinek of Prizren, to Consul Lippich in Shkodra, 13 July 1878; Akte të Rilindjes Kombëtare Shqiptare, 1878-1912 (Tirana: Instituti i Historisë 1978), p. 40-48; and La Ligue albanaise de Prizren, 1878-1881 (Tirana: Institut d’Histoire 1988), p. 55-65. Translated from the German, Albanian and French by Robert Elsie. The original Ottoman Turkish version is missing.