Kosovo: Final Status
Recorded on January 4, 2006
Location: The Heritage Foundation's Lehrman Auditorium
After years of relative international neglect, the Bal­kans
was back on the political agenda in Washington and Brussels this
past summer when agreement was reached to review Kosovo's ultimate
status. As noted by Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs
R. Nicholas Burns, it is "a year of decision for Kosovo."
Since the NATO bombing campaign that ended Ser­bian ethnic
cleansing of Kosovo's Albanian popula­tion six years ago,
Kosovo was effectively made a ward of the international community -
administered by the UN and secured by NATO - with its future status
left to later determination. That time is upon us, to resolve this
issue and finally to win the peace.
Yet significant challenges remain. Longstanding ethnic differences
continue to poison negotiations. Conflict between the Albanian
majority and the Serbian minority has made any reconciliation near
impossible. Will Kosovo one day achieve a lasting and peaceful
independence? Or will history continue to repeat itself? Please
join us as our distinguished panel of scholars addresses these
questions and more.