Kosovo: Consequences of independence

Kosovo flag

(Photo: Kosovo Future Maker/Flickr/CC BY-ND)

Social and political conflicts are a leading source of instability in the world today. They affect not just the countries in which they occur, but they very often engulf their neighbors and have a potential to throw entire regions into turmoil. Even if settlements are reached, they often remain unsound, resulting in a return to violence or necessitating ongoing intervention by the international community. Unfortunately, Kosovo may be such a case. However, the potential for the success of peace processes can be greatly increased when all sections of society are provided with opportunities in order to become active partners in their own peace process.

Nature of the problem of Kosovo

There could be little doubt that the independence declaration of Kosovo has created a new situation as well as a new crisis in the region, with implications much wider than the province’s borders. It is even clearer that, unless realism prevails, this crisis could only worsen or, at the least, fester for a long time. There is a good chance that it could periodically result in episodes of violence. The problem is that realism and solutions based on it are never painless, even more so when the parties in conflict launch from different premises, even if they are both mistaken.

Implications of Kosovo’s independence

The recognition appears often in the official declarations of states, which have recognized Kosovo as the end of a process of dissolution of the former Yugoslav federation, a so-called happy ending of the period of ethnic cleansing and promise of a brighter future. In most related declarations, the responsible officials are making a bet for a harmonious cohabitation between all ethnic groups which, once finally reconciled, will start their integration in the Euro-Atlantic family.

Prospects as to the future of Kosovo

The “Kosovo case” will remain open for a number of years, perhaps decades, primarily due to problems of legality and legitimacy and secondly, due to concrete empirical situations in the field; none of these factors play in favor of a realization of Kosovo as an independent state. The first one involves serious endangerment of the international legal and political order, while the second issue absorbs the fact that Kosovo, in the long run, could look like a non-functional entity as an international protectorate, which furthermore has a “de facto” divided institutional functioning between the Serbian and the Albanian communities.

These factors, however, do not mean that the “Kosovo case” will be archived as a difficult and painful case, for which there are not enough facts or “enough witnesses” (the idea of a frozen conflict). To the contrary, it should be expected that the question of Kosovo in the upcoming period could remain in the heart of interest of not only Serbia and the Balkans, but also of the United States, Europe, Russia and other countries around the world.

Value of Kosovo

Kosovo has some of Europe’s richest reserves in coal, but also in lead, zinc and lignite. The Trepca mine has some 7.5 million tons of mineral reserves, while Kosovo also has silver, gold, nickel, bauxite and manganese. According to a World Bank report, the richness of the Kosovo resources could amount to $13 billion. In a financial emergency, people without this kind of money might turn to a simple credit check cash advance or an installment loan.




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