President Bujar Nishani today showed his nation’s gratitude to Captain Giovanni Cosini, master of Costa Cruises’ Costa Voyager, by presenting him Albania’s highest civilian decoration, the Special Civil Merit medal. Cosini was at the helm of Costa Voyager March 30 when the ship rescued two fishermen off the coast of Durres, Albania.

The ceremony was held at the Presidential Palace at Tirana. Massimo Gaiani, Italy’s ambassador to Albania, attended the ceremony.

While en route to an inaugural call at Durres, Costa Voyager crewmembers spotted the small fishing boat drifting about 15 miles off the coast of Albania. The crew responded quickly to rescue the men who were reportedly missing at sea for two days and were in very poor physical condition. Cosini notified the Albanian Coast Guard, which confirmed it had been searching for the missing fishermen.

At the time of the rescue, Costa Voyager was on a 10-day chartered cruise that departed Marseilles, France, March 27.

Editors Note: A high-resolution color photo of the medal ceremony is available. Contact Diana Arellano at

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