The eighth Congress of the Albanian Women's Union (AWU) opened on Wednesday (1 June), in the western city of Durres, on the Adriatic coast.
GV OF: Congress building with people in national dress dancing in foreground and crowds applauding. (3 SHOTS)
SV OF: Band playing.
GTV OF: Square with celebrations.
SV OF : Crowd applauding as Enver Hoxha arrives and is greeted and receives flowers from children. (4 SHOTS)
GV INTERIOR OF: Crowd applauding.
SV: Mr. Hoxha arriving as crowds applaud. (2 SHOTS)
GV ZOOM INTO SV: AWU President Vito Kapo speaking and being applauded.
There are eighty-three women members in Albania's People's Assembly. Five women have places on the Central Committee, but three of these are wives of State's three leading officials. The AWU conference was to continue until 4 June.
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Background: The eighth Congress of the Albanian Women's Union (AWU) opened on Wednesday (1 June), in the western city of Durres, on the Adriatic coast.
SYNOPSIS: The conference, held in the Palace of Sports, was attended by one thousand four hundred delegates, including members of sixteen delegations from other countries. Among the foreign visitors were Albanian-born women now living in the United States and France. Before proceedings got underways, they were treated in dancing and music.
The residents of this sea port did their utmost to ensure the guests enjoyed their stay.
The major visitor at the opening was the Albanian Head of State, Enver Hoxha. Historically, Albania has been a rigidly patriarchial society, revealing the legacies of customs imported by a series of Turkish, Greek and Italian invaders. But this social pattern has weakened under the fierce Marxist doctrine imposed on the country during the past generation.
A new constitution was laid down a year ago, and was approved, clause by clause, by village groups throughout the land.
It insists on equality between the sexes, and reports say it is considered a legitimate rather than an empty, formula. The government asserts that fifty percent of the work in Albania is done by women, a statastic apply proven by streams of women who pour through factory gates each working day.
In terms of political power, women's strength is no significant. The Politburo, which Mr. Hoxha heads, is resolutely all-male.
The president of the AWU, Comrade Vito Kapo, presented a report on the activity of the organisation's general council. In the country where all cars belong to the state, women drivers are rare, as are women smokers. A pregnant woman receives three months' paid maternity leave, one month before and two months after the birth of her child. After that, she can work a six-hour day for six months on normal pay.