Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Albanian steamship Herzegowina bombarding Albanian towns Kavajë and Siak according to the Dutch newspaper Nieuwe Rotterdamsche Courant dated 20 June 1914

An item dated Berlin, Germany 19th reported that Kawaja (1) was bombarded by the steamship Herzogowina hired by the Albanian cabinet from the Austrian Lloyd.(2) Within 30 minutes were 20 shells fired and were several houses hit. Around hundred rebels fired from the beach with rifles but fled when the fired was returned killing one rebel and wounding others. The ship moved to a location to bombard Siak although the results of the gunfire were not visible while Siak was situated behind the hills. After firing 12 shells  was the bombardment stopped. Rumours in Durazzo claimed that the British admiral ordered the Herzogowina to stop firing while otherwise she was attacked by the international fleet. The Albanian cabinet denied that the British admiral intervened while he was not allowed to meddle internal Albanian affairs.

1. Kavajë along the Adriatic Sea.
2. Albania had been part of the Ottoman Empire until May 1913 when the major powers recognized the indecency resulting in a principality with Wilhelm zu Wied as prince (called mbret or king in his new land]. For his protection was a Dutch gendarmerie responsible. The country was harassed by inland groups with surrounding countries interfering and seeking to occupy the newly borne principality. While defending Durrës (Durazzo] was the Dutch major Thomson killed. His body was brought by the Dutch protected cruiser Hr.Ms. Noord-Brabant to the Netherlands.