Albanian town honors Clinton with sculpture

The Albanian town of Saranda on Thursday unveiled a bronze sculpture honoring Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonPence: Chief Justice Roberts 'has been a disappointment to conservatives' Top federal official says more details coming on foreign election interference The Hill's Campaign Report: COVID-19 puts conventions in flux  MORE.


Saranda Mayor Florjana Koka told onlookers the monument thanks the former first lady and secretary of State for her kindness toward Albania, Reuters reported.

“This bust in our most central public space is an expression of our gratitude through Mrs. Clinton to the American people and state for what they have done for the Albanian people and nation,” she said.

Koka, Saranda’s first female mayor, added the statue pays tribute to Clinton’s trailblazing for women in politics.

Koha Jone, an Albanian newspaper, commemorated the moment with photos of the ceremony on Twitter.

Sculptor Idriz Balani said Thursday Clinton’s “charm, elegance and vitality” inspired his likeness of the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee.

Balani said the idea for the artwork came after Clinton visited the Albanian parliament in 2012 for the Balkan nation’s first centenary.

Clinton told parliament members she hoped Albania and the U.S. would remain friends for another 100 years, he added.

“I used three photos to get her smile, hair, posture and attire right and kept the necklace,” Balani said. "She exudes benevolence. I hope they like it.”

Reuters said Albania is a staunch ally of the U.S. with a history of commemorating American presidents with statues.

Albania has a bust honoring Woodrow Wilson, it said, for the former president’s help during the European country’s youth.

Former President George W. Bush also boasts a monument after visiting Albania in 2007. Bush backed Kosovo’s independence from Yugoslavia, a popular stance in Albania as Kosovo’s population is mainly ethnic Albanian.

Former President Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonA political hero is born in Ohio: America needs more Tyler Ferhmans Presidents, crises and revelations Biden needs to bring religious Americans into the Democratic fold MORE, Hillary Clinton’s husband, has his own statue in Kosovo for supporting it against Yugoslavia in 1999.