Albania munitions blast rattles ministry

By March 19, 2008

Albania (MNN) — Albania's
defense minister quit his job after a weapons depot near the capital blew
up. According to the reports, the blasts
began Saturday and continued for 14 hours.

Continuing explosions rained
artillery shells down on nearby villages and destroyed more than 300 homes. Officials acknowledge the explosions came
while teams were working to destroy excess ammunition stockpiled since
Albania's communist past.

Enkelejda Kumaraku is
with a Trans World Radio partner Valët
e Ungjillit (‘Gospel Waves'), broadcasting from Tirana, Albania. She says the deadly tragedy had a severe
impact on many of their listeners. 

Authorities evacuated 4,000
people from the area. The radio staff
has been responding by providing humanitarian aid, among other things. "In
a few minutes, they were without home, without clothes, without basic needs. So
we've been working with our other partner organizations to help them and show
our love for them and our care for them, not just by our words but by our
deeds." 

Kumaruku says while her
staff of nine has been shaken, they are trying to rebuild through their broadcasts. The
staff produces programs in Albanian, including Thru the Bible and Women of Hope. They also have programs focusing on prayer
and the needs of the listeners.

Even as rescuers search
for survivors, the ministry of TWR in this region is bringing hope. "From
the very beginning, we've been recording the interviews of people–not
just giving the sad stories, but trying to really tell people that God has a
plan for their lives, and God has a plan for the country, and His plan is going
to be fulfilled."

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