Careers, Jobs and Education Resources for: Kosovo


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Serbs migrated to the territories of modern Kosovo in the 7th century but did not fully incorporate them into the Serbian realm until the early 13th century. The Serbian defeat at the Battle of Kosovo in 1389 led to five centuries of Ottoman rule during which large numbers of Turks and Albanians moved to Kosovo. By the end of the 19th century, Albanians replaced the Serbs as the dominant ethnic group in Kosovo. Serbia reacquired control over Kosovo from the Ottoman Empire during the First Balkan War (1912). After World War II (1945), the government of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia led by Josip TITO reorganized Kosovo as an autonomous province within the constituent republic of Serbia. Over the next four decades, Kosovo Albanians lobbied for greater autonomy, and Kosovo was granted the status almost equal to that of a republic in the 1974 Yugoslav Constitution. Despite the legislative concessions, Albanian nationalism increased in the 1980s leading to nationalist riots and calls for Kosovo's independence. Serbs in Kosovo complained of mistreatment and Serb nationalist leaders, such as Slobodan MILOSEVIC, exploited those charges to win support among Serbian voters many of whom viewed Kosovo as their cultural heartland. Under MILOSEVIC's leadership, Serbia instituted a new constitution in 1989 that drastically curtailed Kosovo's autonomy. Kosovo Albanian leaders responded in 1991 by organizing a referendum that declared Kosovo independent from Serbia. The MILOSEVIC regime carried out repressive measures against the Albanians in the early 1990s as the unofficial government of Kosovo, led by Ibrahim RUGOVA, tried to use passive resistance to gain international assistance and recognition of its demands for independence. In 1995, Albanians dissatisfied with RUGOVA's nonviolent strategy created the Kosovo Liberation Army and launched an insurgency. In 1998, MILOSEVIC authorized a counterinsurgency campaign that resulted in massacres and massive expulsions of ethnic Albanians by Serbian military, police, and paramilitary forces. The international community tried to resolve the conflict peacefully, but MILOSEVIC rejected the proposed international settlement - the Rambouillet Accords - leading to a three-month NATO bombing of Serbia beginning in March 1999, which forced Serbia to withdraw its military and police forces from Kosovo in June 1999. UN Security Council Resolution 1244 (1999) placed Kosovo under a transitional administration, the UN Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), pending a determination of Kosovo's future status. Under the resolution, Serbia's territorial integrity was protected, but it was UNMIK that assumed responsibility for governing Kosovo. In 2001, UNMIK promulgated a Constitutional Framework, which established Kosovo's Provisional Institutions of Self-Government (PISG). In succeeding years UNMIK increasingly devolved responsibilities to the PISG. A UN-led process began in late 2005 to determine Kosovo's future status. Negotiations held intermittently between 2006 and 2007 on issues related to decentralization, religious heritage, and minority rights failed to yield a resolution between Serbia's willingness to grant a high degree of autonomy and the Albanians' call for full independence for Kosovo. On 17 February 2008, the Kosovo Assembly declared its independence from Serbia. (from the CIA)
 
 

 

Economic Overview

Over the past few years kosovo's economy has shown significant progress in transitioning to a market-based system, but it is still highly dependent on the international community and the diaspora for financial and technical assistance. remittances from the diaspora - located mainly in germany and switzerland - account for about 30% of gdp. kosovo's citizens are the poorest in europe with an average annual per capita income of only $1800 - about one-third the level of neighboring albania. unemployment - at more than 40% of the population - is a severe problem that encourages outward migration. most of kosovo's population lives in rural towns outside of the capital, pristina. inefficient, near-subsistence farming is common - the result of small plots, limited mechanization, and lack of technical expertise. economic growth is largely driven by the private sector - mostly small-scale retail businesses. with international assistance, kosovo has been able to privatize 50% of its state-owned enterprises (soes) by number, and over 90% of soes by value. minerals and metals - including lignite, lead, zinc, nickel, chrome, aluminum, magnesium, and a wide variety of construction materials - once formed the backbone of industry, but output has declined because investment has been insufficient to replace ageing eastern bloc equipment. technical and financial problems in the power sector also impedes industrial development. the us has worked with the world bank to prepare a commercial tender for the development of new power generating and mining capacity. the official currency of kosovo is the euro, but the serbian dinar is also used in the serb enclaves. kosovo's tie to the euro has helped keep inflation low. kosovo has maintained a budget surplus as a result of efficient tax collection and inefficient budget execution. while maintaining ultimate oversight, unmik continues to work with the eu and with kosovo's government to accelerate economic growth, lower unemployment, and attract foreign investment. in order to help integrate kosovo into regional economic structures, unmik signed (on behalf of kosovo) its accession to the central europe free trade area (cefta) in 2006. in february 2008, unmik also represented kosovo at the newly established regional cooperation council (rcc).

Government Type

Republic

Population

2,126,708 (2007 est.)

Location

Southeast europe, between serbia and macedonia

Area

Total: 10,887 sq km land: 10,887 sq km water: 0 sq km

Slightly larger than delaware

Country Aliases

Conventional long form: republic of kosovo conventional short form: kosovo local long form: republika e kosoves (republika kosova) local short form: kosova (kosovo) former: kosovo and metohija autonomous province

Capital

Name: pristina (prishtine) geographic coordinates: 42 40 n, 21 10 e time difference: utc+1 (6 hours ahead of washington, dc during standard time) daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last sunday in march; ends last sunday in october

International Disputes

Serbia with several other states protest the us and other states' recognition of kosovo's declaring itself as a sovereign and independent state in february 2008; ethnic serbian municipalities along kosovo's northern border challenge final status of kosovo-serbia boundary; several thousand nato-led kfor peacekeepers under unmik authority continue to keep the peace within kosovo between the ethnic albanian majority and the serb minority in kosovo; kosovo and macedonia completed demarcation of their boundary in september 2008

Sources: Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)

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