Fun Facts About Kosovo – Welcome to the Land of Freedom!

The Youngest Country of the World!

Did you know…Following more than seven decades of Yugoslav/Serbian government, Kosovo declared its independence on February 17, 2008. Hence, the Connecticut-size land made the world headlines when became the youngest country in the first decade of the 21st century. Ten years before, it was not an independent nation in Europe compared to its neighbors — for example, Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia Hercegovina. At the same time, Kosovo boasted one of Europe’s last wars, an ethnic-based conflict, where were killed more than 10,000 persons. From the end of the Cold War to the beginning of the 21st century, it had not been neither prosperous nor stable. In those circumstances, Kosovo stood as the poorest region on the European mainland. Later on, Kosovo’s independence was backed by America, Albania, and Great Britain. In 2009, it was one of the most peaceful countries on the Balkan Peninsula of Europe.

People

Did you know… This Southeastern European nation has a population of about 1,800,000. It ranks 148th in population among the countries of the world. Around 88 per cent of the nation’s population is made up of Albanians. There are also other ethnic groups: Kosovo Serbs, Bosniaks, Goranis, Roma, Turks, Ashkalis, Egyptians.

Education

Did you know…Education and technology have received increased emphasis in this landlocked country since it became independent in the first decade of the 21st century.

Kosovo & the United States of America

Did you know…On November 23, 1999, President Bill Clinton made history when arrived in Urosevac, Kosovo. Since then, it was the first official visit by an American Head of State to Kosovo. America’s leader Clinton arrived in Urosevac to an enthusiastic welcome. During his visit, Mr Clinton had called on Kosovo Albanians to forgive the injustices perpetrated against them by the Serbs. This Southeastern European nation has been recognized by Washington since 2008.

Geography

Did you know…The landlocked country of Kosovo, that once formed part of Ottoman empire, lies on the Balkan Peninsula of Southeastern Europe. It is bordered by Montenegro on the Northwest, Macedonia on the South, and Albania on the West. This new nation holds a territory of 4,203 square miles (or 10,908 square kilometers). On the other hand, the Kosovar countryside consists mainly of mountains separated by fertile valleys. Unique among European countries, it is about the size of Connecticut, an American state.

Kosovo’s capital

Did you know…Pristina — the country’s largest city — is the capital city of Kosovo. It is also the nation’s chief commercial, cultural, and industrial center. Since then, Pristina’s rich history and friendly people has made it one of the most important metropolises on the Balkan Peninsula. Additionally,it has about 500,000 inhabitants.

Languages

Did you know…Albanian and Serbian are the national languages. The landlocked nation also has other non-official languages: Gorani, Romani, Bosnian, and Turkish, among others.

Sports

Did you know…The most popular sports are: basketball, boxing, canoe, chess, gymnastics, soccer, swimming, table tennis, team handball, track & field, water polo, and wrestling. Nonetheless, the Olympic team — made up of Albanians, Kosovo Serbs, Bosniaks and Goranis — has not competed in the modern Olympic Games. Over the past 14 months, the national government has stepped up efforts to participate in the world championships and multi-sports events. Some of its best athletes living in Western Europe. In 1987, Kosovo’s boxer Aziz Salihu earned the gold medal at the Mediterranean Games in Syria.

Ecology

Did you know… More than 25 per cent of its territory is covered by rainforests.

Awards & Prizes

Did you know…The new nation was endorsed by Donald Trump,president of Miss Universe Organization in 2008. Also that year, Miss Kosovo, Zana Krasniqi, under the watchful eye of Fadil Berisha — one of the world’s most popular fashion photographers — made the top 15 in Nha Trang, Vietnam. She was the first Kosovar women to compete in MU. Ironically, Kosovo does not have diplomatic ties with Hanoi. In the following year, in August 2009, the nation’s contestant Marigona «Gona» Dragusha finished third in The Bahamas, outpacing 80 other entries. Prior to Miss Kosovo’s Bahamas trip, she, who is reminiscent of the world-famous actress Audrey Hepburn, had been training in New York City,along with Hasna Xhukici, Miss Albania.

Metropolises

Did you know… Apart from Pristina, the region gathers four amazing cities: Dakovica, Kosovska Mitrovica, Peja, and Prizren.

International Organizations

Did you know…Since 2009 this Eastern European nation belongs to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank.

Economics

Did you know… On the economic side, Kosovo over the last five decades has changed from a socialist economy to a free market system. From then onwards, a number of foreign corporations operate businesses in the country. Despite being one of Europe’s smallest nations, the landlocked country has important mineral resources, including nickel, lignite, lead, chrome, aluminum, and magnesium. But there’s more. Much of Europe’s coal wealth lies in Kosovo. The resources could provide for economic growth if those natural resources were used more fully. Additionally, Kosovo is endowed with fertil soil. Nature-based tourism is a new source of income.

Mountains

Did you know…Deravica is the nation’s tallest peak: it rises 8,714 feet (2,656 meters) above sea level.

Famous Kosovars

Did you know… The country’s has produced a number of performers/artists, including Melihate Ajeti (actress), Adekina Ismajli (singer), Shaban Gashi (photographer), Akil Mark Koci (composer), Esat Valla (painter) and a host of others. It has also produced many fine writers, among them Xhevdet Bajraj and Eqrem Basha. However, few of them are known outside the country.

Foreign Relations

Did you know…During the 1990s and early 2000s, Kosovo worked to establish ties with several republics. So far, the new nation has been internationally recognized by 62 member countries of the United Nations, including the United States, Australia, France, Turkey, Germany, and the United Kingdom. Meanwhile, the new country receives continued support and aid from the US and European Union.

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