Western Balkans

Three visions for final status of Kosovo

, by Fehmi Hajra, Isak Gllogovci

All the versions of this article: [English] [français]

Three visions for final status of Kosovo

Vision one: the International Community

On February 6th John Sawers, Political Director of the British Foreign Office, told the Kosovo Serbs leaders during a meeting directly that the Contact Group, comprised of France, Great Britain, Germany, Italy, Russia and the US, had decided that Kosovo should be granted independence.

This statement comes after the modification of the international community’s attitude towards Kosovo.

This can be clearly seen after the Security Council meeting of February 14th when for the first time Great Britain, a member state of the EU and permanent member of Security Council, clearly stated that independence for Kosovo is a realistic option.

Later this statement had been supported by certain other permanent members of the Security Council. These statements give hope for a sustainable solution of Kosovo’s final status that will contribute to the stability of the Balkan region, also known as the “black hole” of Europe.

Vision two: the Serbs

On the Serbian political scene there are actually three stances with regards to the future of Kosovo.

The first being presented by the Serbian Radical Party leader - according to him - in agreement with the prime minister of Serbia Vojislav Kostunica that if anyone proclaims independence of Kosovo they will declare Kosovo as “occupied territory”.

Second by the Serbian President Boris Tadic, who at the above mentioned Security Council meeting proposed that no decision for Kosovo’s status should be made in the next 20 years.

While the third vision, represented by the leader of the Liberal Democratic Party Cedomir Jovanovic, ex deputy of prime minister in Zoran Dzindzic government, represents the moderated and pro European wing in Serbia’s politics says that Kosovo is already independent and as such of no threat to the Serbian state.

Vision three: the Kosova Albanians

Member of Kosovo’s negotiating team Hashim Thaqi said in his latest lecture at the Free University of Berlin that Kosovo will be a citizen’s state, where all ethnicities will have the opportunity to develop their own national and cultural identities and will enjoy equal rights.

While Veton Surroi, also member of the negotiating team, representing Kosovo’s intellectual and urban vanguard says the independence of Kosovo is not a flag, anthem, logo, “battle of Fushë Kosova” [1], or Illyrian - Dardanian [2] continuity issue nor an isolation issue, but rather an issue of management, security, and perspective in the XXI century.

Independence of Kosovo for Kosova’s well known activist Albin Kurti, who was imprisoned during the Milosevic time for organizing famous peaceful student’s protests, is the only repayment for Kosovar Albanians suffered during the Milosevic time.

For Kosovo to be well managed and become a democratic state of its entire people, and join the European Union, Kosovo must first become an independent sovereign state.

Instead of Conclusion

Jose Manuel Barroso came to Kosovo to deliver the message that the future of Kosovo and the entire region is within the European Union. The EU has proved that it can act effectively in the foreign policy field, as was the case in Macedonia, where it took an active part and forced the conflicting parties to search for the best solution through negotiations resulting in the Ohrid agreement and a win-win situation.

Therefore the EU should also take a leading role in Kosovo and its post-status circumstances. As the International Crisis Group recommends the independence package, the international community asks Kosovo to focus on social and economic development. Crafting it should be an opportunity for the EU and its Member States, to expand their commitment, including resources, to the Western Balkans in general.

A generous education assistance program and a visa liberalisation are needed, as is assistance for rural development. The EU must not end up spending more on its own post-status mission costs in Kosovo than it does on pre-accession structural funds for the new country.

Keywords

Footnotes

[1Fushë Kosova is a valley near Kosovo’s capital Prishtina where the battle between the Ottoman Empire and Balkan’s people coalition took place in 1389.This battle served as a base for settlement of Serbian national identity and became a myth amongst the Serbians despite having lost the battle.

[2Dardanians were part of Illyrian tribes that used to live in the Kosovo area, and Albanians claim to be their descendants.

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