Article by Violete Kurti
After the Balkan war which took place in the 90’s, the small yet struggling country Kosovo has proven several times their desire to become a part of Europe. By self-declaring themselves as independent in 2008, the country has opened discussions whether or not the country is able to be a part of the European Union. As considered as one of the poorest country in Europe, Kosovo’s dream of travel freely in the Schengen area and build up their industry, have faced many doubts if it ever will be realized.
With increased population and low opportunities for employment, Kosovo finds themselves in a dilemma where external aid is needed. Many of the requirements that the EU has presented to Kosovo includes a cooperation with their neighbor in the north, Serbia in order for the country to receive a fair chance. However, that is easier said than done. Long after the war, the two countries are reluctant to cooperate towards a prosperous future and this matter affects the population of Kosovo.
Even though there is no on-going war in the country, a majority finds themselves seeking asylum in the richer countries and hoping to establish a better life there. The problematic event between Serbia and Kosovo causes an unstable environment in the country and hinders Kosovo on their path to become an EU-member.
Since the end of the 1990’s, the UN has had its presence in the country in order to build the country again. The United Nations Mission in Kosovo has played a crucial part in the country when it comes to maintaining peace between the Serbs and Kosovars. Politically, UNMIK’s presence has not been welcomed by all due to the fact it has been considered that Kosovo was forced to follow a path that was not beneficial for the country. It is not only the legal and economic systems that are in need of restoring, also the perception of human rights in the country. Till this day, there are groups in the Kosovar society without any basic human rights. Traditions and prejudices are strong in the country and a reason as to why the UN’s presence is still needed.
UNMIK’s goal with Kosovo is a long process which probably will be needed until Serbia and Kosovo make peace with each other.
The fragile situation between Serbia and Kosovo is intense. Accusations of war crimes and the search of vendetta are very common and the main reason to why Kosovo has not received full recognition from all the independent countries in the world. For instance, Spain has chosen to not recognize the independence of Kosovo, due to the fact that they face a similar situation with Catalonia.
Finally, Kosovo has still a long way to go and as long as Kosovo is willing to create a brighter future for its population, the world and its government will be there as an assistant on the way.