A man celebrates during celebrations of the 10th anniversary of Kosovo's independence in Pristina, Kosovo February 17, 2018. Ognen Teofilovski / Reuters
Kosovo is a partially recognized state in Europe, whose capital and largest city is Pristina. It is a disputed territory that declared independence from Serbia in 2008. Kosovo is recognized by 112 members of the UN.
The creation of Kosovo’s own 5,000-strong army is a threat to peace and security in a turbulent region and may lead to a new escalation, Russia’s UN envoy has warned, calling the EU’s lackluster response irresponsible.
NATO has expressed its ‘regret’ that Kosovo has decided to upgrade its Security Force into an army, but the move is just the next, logical step on the road to full statehood, which western powers have encouraged.
Kosovo has upset just about everyone (except the US) by creating its army, in a move that researchers see as revenge against both Serbia and the EU, and an attempt to better stake a claim for the breakaway region's sovereignty.
American flags were flown over the Albanian-majority south side of Mitrovica in Kosovo as the region voted to create its own army. In response, buildings on the north side were draped in Serbian flags, hanging out of windows.
Spain will afford athletes from Kosovo the same rights as other competitors at sports events in the country, after changing its stance following pressure from the International Olympic Committee (IOC).