Kosovo is a region in the Balkans that has been the site of conflict for centuries. The most recent conflict was the Kosovo War of 1998-1999, in which NATO intervened to stop a Serbian campaign of ethnic cleansing against the Albanian population of Kosovo. Since then, Kosovo has been a UN-administered province, and its status is currently the subject of negotiations between the Serbian and Kosovar governments.
Kosovo is a predominantly Albanian-populated region with a Serb minority. Albanians have long been discriminated against by the Serbian government, and the Albanian population took up arms in the late 1990s to fight for independence. After the war, Kosovo declared independence from Serbia, but this is not recognized by the Serbian government.
The Kosovo War was fought largely along ethnic lines, with the Albanian population supporting the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) and the Serb population supporting the Serbian government forces. The war ended with NATO intervention, which drove the Serbian forces out of Kosovo. Since then, Kosovo has been under UN administration.
The current status of Kosovo is the subject of negotiations between the Serbian and Kosovar governments. Kosovo has been seeking full independence, while Serbia has been offering autonomy within Serbia. The negotiations have been ongoing for years without any breakthrough.
The Kosovar Albanian population is largely in favor of independence, while the Serb minority is opposed to it. There are also divisions within the Albanian population, with some favoring a continued dialogue with Serbia and some favoring a more hardline approach.
The issue of Kosovo's status is further complicated by the fact that Kosovo is home to a number of important Serbian Orthodox religious sites, including the Patriarchal Monastery of Pec. The Serbian government has been unwilling to cede control of these sites to an independent Kosovo.
The current impasse in negotiations has led to increased tensions in the region. In 2018, there was a major outbreak of violence between Albanian and Serb youths in the city of Mitrovica. The violence was sparked by a dispute over a Serb-run restaurant that was accused of serving food on Serbian Orthodox religious holidays.
The situation in Kosovo remains volatile, and the issue of its status is likely to continue to be a source of tension in the Balkans for years to come.
Yugoslavian New Dinar (1994–2002)