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Scrutiny
  
It’s now or never...
For Kosovo the time has come
01/11/2007

Freedom is neither a gift nor charity. It is claimed in exchange for blood, lives & resources. But probably, Kosovars have realised the truth a little late. Their small province, Kosovo (the land where 10% Serbs and 90% Albanians are in residence currently) is still in limbo. Its declaration of independence may bring some unforeseeable consequences, while keeping over two million patriotic Kosovars deprived of freedom, which will be an unfair judgment & will only amplify violence, murder & ethnic conflicts.

The last territory of the former Yugoslavia, Kosovo has been a UN protectorate state since 1999 when NATO forces bombed to throw out Serbian armies. But technically it remains a province of Serbia. While 90% Kosovars have been hunting for freedom; years of negotiations, intervention of international bodies remained unfruitful. Still Kosovar leadership agreed to give another chance to the impasse on December 10, after which they will declare independence. Though the US, the EU & the UN are to give Kosovo supervised freedom, Serbia (which never wanted to separate the province) & its ally Russia strongly opposed the proposals. Serbia envisaged that it will destabilise the world. Boris Tadic claims that it would agitate 10% Kosovan Serbs (he sees it as losing part of its historical & religious heritage). It would also trigger instability in many other parts like Bosnia-Herzegovina & Macedonia and it could disrupt EU’s eastern part as its relation with Putin is already in danger over trade disputes, energy supplies etc..

But for that, should Kosovars sit idle & sacrifice their freedom? Serbian leadership has taken eight years to unfold with no result. The country has enough stock of gas but it is fuelled by poverty and unemployment. Despite over $2.5 billion foreign aid, unemployment is as high as 50%. Electricity is available for merely 12 hours a day. But, Kosovo’s independence, could certainly ignite Balkan again.

By:- B&E
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