Basic Western misconceptions on the Kosovo issue and their corrections
32. The best and most democratic solution of the Kosovo knot is to recognize Kosovo’s self-proclaimed independence from Serbia
Wrong. This is the worst solution of all possible combinations which already directly provoked a chain reaction by numerous separatist movements around the world. The first of them were of South Ossetia and Abkhazia in August 2008 followed by the Crimean separatists backed by Russia’s federal government who well exploited the case of “Kosovo precedent” for the re-inclusion of the Crimean Peninsula into Russia in 2014. The Catalan separatists proclaimed a formal independence from Spain in 2018 exploiting the Kosovo case too. As a matter of fact, the creation of independent Kosovo was a long-time option among the Yugoslav Albanians which was not rejected by the Western part of international community as thoroughly unacceptable. However, in this case, it should be respected the principle that the borders could be changed only by peaceful means and with the agreement of the parties concerned – the principle already adopted by the EU in the case of the bloody destruction of ex-Yugoslavia in 1991−1995. However, taking into consideration the public opinion as well as the opinion of the most important political factors in Serbia, who decisively were rejecting such possibility, the realization of this option was possible only by a war (the Kosovo War in 1998−1999) between Serbia’s central authorities and Kosovo’s Albanian extremists (KLA). Considering this reality, the moderate Albanian separatists from Kosovo advocated the strategy “step by step” (from the 1990s) by supporting the modality of achieving the status of republic or confederal unit under international protection, what would in the future open the possibility for a less painful secession. However, KosMet with the status of a highest autonomy (the “Hong Kong” or “Scandinavian” models) within Serbia can be also dangerous as there would be created a precedent that would encourage minority communities in other states which make a compact majority in some territory to follow the same way (Kurds in Turkey) – this would turn the ethnic issue into the global issue of security. The danger of creation of independent Kosovo does not only lie in the fact that the official Belgrade is opposing this idea (likewise, for instance, Cypriot government), but also in the danger that the newly-created state would strive to get united with the neighboring areas populated by the Albanians (South Serbia, West Macedonia, East Montenegro). Thus would, by itself, endanger the security and stability in the region.