Kosovo, officially the Republic of Kosovo, is a landlocked country in the central Balkan Peninsula. It declared its independence from Serbia in February 2008 and became the Republic of Kosovo. With these facts about Kosovo, let us learn more about the history, economy, people, culture and geography of this beautiful Balkan country.
1. Kosovo was ruled by the Ottoman Empire from mid 15th century to the early 20th century.
2. The name “Kosovo” derives from the name of a place in Serbia meaning “field of blackbirds”.
3. Kosovo unilaterally declared itself independent from Serbia on 17 February 2008. However, Serbia contested and claimed that the independence of Kosovo is “illegal”. On 22 July 2010, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) decided that the independence of Kosovo from Serbia is legal and it did not violate any applicable rule of international law.
4. More than 110 countries recognize Kosovo as an independent country. However, a bunch of countries including Serbia, Russia, and some EU countries still do not recognize Kosovo as an independent country for that matter.
5. Due to its geographical location, it serves as an important link between central and southern Europe, Black Sea and the Adriatic Sea.
6. It is one of the youngest countries in the world to have attained independence. The Newborn monument in downtown Prishtina is painted every year in different styles. South Sudan is the youngest of the lot after attaining independence in July 2011.
7. The majority of the country’s population is Albanian and most of the population lives under the poverty line.
8. Kosovo (10,887 sq km) is the smallest country in the Balkans and it is about the size of Jamaica (10,991 sq km) or Lebanon (10,400 sq km). Kosovo is slightly larger than Delaware.