Thursday, July 22, 2010

Kosovo's Independence

This Fall, in addition to moving the Peace Corps process forward, I'll also be seeking acceptance into the New School's International Field Program. They offer programs in some 8 or so countries, with this year being the first time in Kosovo. This one-time autonomous province of Serbia, considered the Serbian "Jerusalem", is some 90% Albanian. Sound familiar?

My hope, being fascinated with all things Europe and specifically the disintegration of the former Yugoslavia, is to gain acceptance into the Kosovo program.

In 2008, Kosovo declared its independence from Serbia and today, the International Court of Justice declared its secession from Serbia legal. Stated here:

"International law does not have an active provision that limits independence declarations, therefore Kosovo's declaration of independence is not in breach of international law," the court president, Hisashi Owada of Japan, said.

Obviously, Serbia does not agree with this opinion. Also found on,

"all state organs would analyze the ICJ decision", while his emissaries would be dispatched over the weekend to 55 countries state worldwide, where they will deliver his personal message.

"Serbia will never recognize the unilaterally declared independence of Kosovo, since we believe that unilateral and ethnically motivated secession is not in line with UN principles," said he.

Some 69 countries have recognized Kosovo's independence, the U.S. being one of them, but Kosovo needs 100 to achieve official statehood status. In contrast, Serbia's rejection is supported by two of the permanent UN Security Council members as well as five of the 27 EU members.

In these articles, Serbia is pledging to resolve the dispute through political means, not through violence. With that said, tensions continue, making it a very compelling place to spend 8 weeks next summer.

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