Serbo-Kosovo crisis

Article

August 11, 2022

The Serbian-Kosovo crisis (Serb. Srpsko-Kosovo crisis, Alb. Kriza serbo-kosovare) is an aggravation of the situation between Serbia and Kosovo, formally due to the expiration on August 1, 2022 of the 11-year validity period of documents for cars.

Background

On September 22, 1991, the establishment of the independent Republic of Kosovo was proclaimed. On October 22, 1991, Albania recognized the independence of the Republic of Kosovo. In 2008, the Kosovo parliament declared independence from Serbia, which did not recognize this, considering that Kosovo is part of it under the name of the Autonomous Province of Kosovo and Metohija. In 2011, an agreement was concluded between Serbia and Kosovo on the use of neutral documents and license plates by the northerners of Kosovo, which expire on August 1, 2022. After that, Serbian citizens entering the territory of the republic will receive temporary Kosovo documents on crossing the border, and Serbian ones will be invalid. Serbia does not recognize the independence of Kosovo and does not consider it possible for Kosovo to set rules for car registration. Most of the countries of the European Union, as well as 98 countries of the world, recognize Kosovo, while Russia, China and 95 other UN member states do not. Kosovo's Prime Minister Albin Kurti has said that the republic will apply for membership in the European Union by the end of 2022.

Course of events

July 31st

On July 31, the Serbian army was put on high alert, and the Serbian population in northern Kosovo began to build barricades. NATO-led Kosovo forces sent troops to patrol the streets. At the same time, the Kosovo special forces closed the border. Serbian Foreign Minister Nikola Selakovich said that Kosovo is "literally preparing hell in the coming days" for the Serbs who live in Kosovo. Member of the Serbian Progressive Party Vladimir Djukanovic stated that it was necessary to "denazify the Balkans". According to the Serbian newspaper Danas, air raid sirens went off in the north of the partially recognized Republic of Kosovo (in the settlements of Kosovsko Mitrovica, Zubin Potok, Metohija). The Serbian Ministry of Defense stated: “Due to the large amount of disinformation that the administration in Pristina deliberately puts on the air and that is distributed black