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Cutting or Tightening the Gordian Knot?

16th Workshop of the Study Group ”Regional Stability in South East Europe” - Proceedings

Beiträge in dieser Publikation:

Name Seiten/Dateigröße
The Future of Kosovo and the Peace Process in the Western Balkans after the Decision on Independence 214 Seiten / 784 KB PDF ansehen
214 Seiten (784 KB) PDF downloaden
214 Seiten (784 KB)
Welcome Speech 6 Seiten / 122 KB PDF ansehen
6 Seiten (122 KB) PDF downloaden
6 Seiten (122 KB)
The Status Process and Its Implications for Kosovo 5 Seiten / 103 KB PDF ansehen
5 Seiten (103 KB) PDF downloaden
5 Seiten (103 KB)
The Independence of Kosovo and the Consolidation of Macedonia - A Reason to Worry? 29 Seiten / 234 KB PDF ansehen
29 Seiten (234 KB) PDF downloaden
29 Seiten (234 KB)
Implications for Southern Serbia 17 Seiten / 196 KB PDF ansehen
17 Seiten (196 KB) PDF downloaden
17 Seiten (196 KB)
The Secession of Kosovo - A Precedent for the Region? 26 Seiten / 227 KB PDF ansehen
26 Seiten (227 KB) PDF downloaden
26 Seiten (227 KB)
The Future International Presences in Kosovo 11 Seiten / 196 KB PDF ansehen
11 Seiten (196 KB) PDF downloaden
11 Seiten (196 KB)
Kosovo’s Independence: The Consequences for EU Integration Policy 7 Seiten / 160 KB PDF ansehen
7 Seiten (160 KB) PDF downloaden
7 Seiten (160 KB)
Kosovo: America’s “NATO State” in the Balkans? 9 Seiten / 166 KB PDF ansehen
9 Seiten (166 KB) PDF downloaden
9 Seiten (166 KB)
The Russian “Return” to the Western Balkans 9 Seiten / 184 KB PDF ansehen
9 Seiten (184 KB) PDF downloaden
9 Seiten (184 KB)
International Support to Enhance Confidence Building in Kosovo 12 Seiten / 166 KB PDF ansehen
12 Seiten (166 KB) PDF downloaden
12 Seiten (166 KB)
Untying the Gordian Knot in the Balkans 34 Seiten / 252 KB PDF ansehen
34 Seiten (252 KB) PDF downloaden
34 Seiten (252 KB)


After two years of Serb-Albanian negotiations without having achieved a political compromise, the Kosovo status issue since February has gone through tremendous changes: The Kosovo Parliament on 17 February 2008 declared the independence of this province under UN administration.

While the greater part of EU member states and the US government have recognized Kosovo as an independent country or have announced their intention to do so, Serbia and Russia want to fight this as an "illegal” qualified decision with diplomatic means.

The EU plans to replace the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), in order to support state building and to monitor the implementation of minority rights in accordance with the Ahtisaari Plan. The conditions for the new EU missions are difficult due to a deteriorating security situation in the ethnically Serb dominated north of Kosovo and political resistance from the Serbian government in Belgrade. The heterogeneous government of Vojislav Ko¹tunica broke up as a consequence of antagonist opinions on future relations with the EU after their support for Kosovo’s independence. Although a nationalistic setback in Serbia seems less probable due to the appointment of a mainly pro-European new government in July, as a consequence of preliminary elections conducted in May, the path to a more pragmatic policy towards Kosovo seems to remain rather difficult.

In Serbia’s and Kosovo’s neighbourhood - especially in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Macedonia - the fear of negative repercussions of the Kosovo development has increased. There is a genuine fear of a "domino effect” where other groups in neighbouring countries could also demand rights for self-determination, especially in Serbia proper, where in its mainly Albanian inhabited southern part a de facto division of Kosovo could lead to nationalistic demands.

This book includes contributions from the 16th workshop of the PfP Consortium Study Group "Regional Stability in South East Europe”. It was carried out in Reichenau, Austria, 23-25 May 2008, and aimed to go deep into the analysis of the latest developments in Kosovo: Does Kosovo’s declared independence mean that the Gordian knot has been finally cut and that the region after a turbulent interim period can concentrate on integration into the Euro-Atlantic institutions? Or was the February decision the starting point for new critical status issues, which appear as a consequence in Kosovo itself - this time driven by the Serbs - as well as in the neighbouring countries? What can the international organisations engaged in the peace processes do to guarantee a peaceful transition in Kosovo and to prevent a new cycle of instability in the region?

How can the Euro-Atlantic institutions contribute to secure the whole region sticking to co-operation and integration? In this book outstanding experts in their analyses try to approach these questions, which are fundamental for the region’s further peace-building.

Eigentümer und Herausgeber: Bundesministerium für Landesverteidigung | Roßauer Lände 1, 1090 Wien
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