Migration: as a right and a contributing threat to international security
Sep 12, 2019
Agri Verrija
Migration: as a right and a contributing threat to international security

Agri Verrija has very recently been admitted to the Metro Bethesda Rotary. Originally from Albania, he has studied international law in his native Albania, earning the equivalent of a Juris Doctor. Upon the collapse of communism, he left to pursue legal studies in The Netherlands, The UK, Italy, and the U.S., and holds a Master of Laws from Hamline University, Minnesota. Previously, he has worked with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) as a legal protection officer in the aftermath of the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia, which led to a humanitarian disaster and one of the most serious refugee crises following the dissolution of Yugoslavia. As advisor to Albania’s Minister of Justice and the Prime Minister he worked on key legislation designed to fight organized crime and corruption, such as the amendments to the Criminal Code, aka “the Anti-Mafia Legal Package”, the law on measures against terrorist financing, and seizure and forfeiture of assets resulting from the criminal activities law. Together with the U.S. Department of Justice and Italy’s Chief Prosecutor, Agri worked to set up Albania’s first Witness Protection Program. In the U.S. he advised the Embassy of Albania in the process that led up to Albania’s becoming the newest NATO member.

In his leisure time, Agri enjoys running, reading ancient Greek philosophy and early Islamic philosophical thought, military history, and current affairs. He is an aficionado and practitioner of Mediterranean cooking and culinary culture. In that regard he and his wife, Sharon, like to host social dinners. He is married with one daughter, Beatrix (aka Trixie), who has just started middle school.