Home Today's Paper Most Popular Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Subscription Blog Signin Register
Monday, August 21, 2017 02:11:56 PM
Follow Us On: Facebook Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter

Recognition of Kosovo by Bangladesh and its implications

18th-Mar-2017       Readers ( 326 )   0 Comments
Share your thought
Post a comment »
Read all (0) »

S.M Rashed Ahmed :
We have a shared history with Kosovo. Both the countries have fought for their independence. Like us, they are also victims of genocide and have long history of denial of rights and autonomy that eventually gave birth to an independent Kosovo after long political struggle and bloody war of Independence.  Like us they also started their struggle for independence peacefully under the leadership of Ibrahim Rugova who is called the Gandhi of the Balkans. He wanted a non-violent resolution of the Kosovo crisis with Serbian dictator Milosovice and his military responded with bullets. They have freedom fighters like Hashim Thaçi, former prime minister who is now the President of Kosovo, Adam Jeshari one of the the bravest freedom fighters of Kosovo, who was the founder of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) and other freedom fighters. Adam Jeshari single handedly fought against the Serbian Security forces and was killed along with his entire family. The birth of KLA was due to disproportionate us of force by Serbian dictator Milosovic. Instead of a negotiated settlement of the Kosovo crisis with the Albanians leadership, he decided to opt for a military solution to the conflict by policy of ethnic and religious cleansing of Kosovo Albanians. This led to bloody arm struggle including forcible expulsion of million of Albanian men, women and children who fled as refugees into neighboring countries.
All diplomatic efforts by the West failed to persuade Milosovic to cease the policy of brutal repression and Force to resolve the crisis peacefully though a negotiated settlement of the crisis acceptable to all parties. NATO decided on humanitarian intervention on 24th Mach 1999 by air strikes against strategic targets inside Yugoslovia.
Milosovic countered through a coordinated operation of ethnic cleansing of Kosovo Albanians on an unprecedented scale forcing nearly six hundred thousand Kosovo Albanians mostly women, children and elderly to leave Kosovo as refugees while killing, maiming and detaining the Albanians young men. In the ensuing battle between the Serbian security forces and the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) backed by the NATO the
Serbian security forces suffered heavy causalities in the hills and village of Kosovo. When NATO threatened to take military action on the ground, Milosovice decided to accept the UN Security Council resolution 1244 for a cease-fire. Consequently NATO also decided to suspend further military action against Serbian military targets in Kosovo.
UN resolution 1244, inter-alia, placed Kosovo under a UN interim Administration (UNMIK) to oversee administration of Kosovo, holding of local elections, ensuring return of the refugees and displaced persons, withdrawal of Serbian armed forces from Kosovo and disarming of the KLA.
The recognition of Kosovo by Bangladesh is a welcome development. It has added a new dimension to our diplomacy. The implications for the international community are important. Bangladesh has joined other countries, which have recognized Kosovo in reaffirming the principle that there would be no reward for ethnic or religious cleansing wherever it takes place. Bangladesh also upholds the principle of humanitarian intervention when a massive violation of human rights takes place in any country forcing its citizens to flee to other countries for safety and security and become refugees.
At this point the plea of the country involved in such massive violation of human rights that the issue is an internal matter for that country is unacceptable under humanitarian international law. In this context the humanitarian intervention by NATO forces in Kosovo, at the initiative of president Clinton in 1999 involving air strikes on the Serbian security forces following decision of Milosovic to embark on massive ethnic cleansing of Kosovo Albanians sets a welcome precedent in international humanitarian law. This paved the way for the return of millions of Kosovo Albanians refugees and displaced person to their homes and setting up of the UN Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) Under Security Council (UNSC) resolution 1244. The UN resolution 1244, also eventually led to a negotiated settlement of the Kosovo crisis.
In my capacity as the UN Regional Administrator of Kosovo, the first diplomat from a developing country to hold the post, I was fortunate to be able to make my modest contribution to the process of peaceful resolution of the Kosovo crisis. As the Regional Administrator of Mitrovica I sustained the process of direct negotiations initiated by my predecessor David Mitchels involving the elected presidents of three Albanian municipalities in the south of Mitrovica region and three presidents of the Serbian municipalities in the north of Mitrovica. Mitrovica was characterized a de facto partition between the Kosovo Albanians in the South and the Kosovo Sarbians in the North separated by river Ibar and connected by a bridge on the river. The bloody Kosovo conflict started from this region. Even after the conflict was over there were frequent interethnic clashes on the bridge between the two ethnic groups. The agonizing negotiations and dialogue took place in the UN Regional head quarters in Mitrovica and lasted for months.  
I was ably assisted by the French KFOR General, the Irish police commander and the UNMIK Municipal Administrators of the region, among others. The Special Representative of the Secretary General (SRSG) in Kosovo also gave his personal support by visiting Mitrovica region, and participating in the discussions between the Albanian and Serbian municipal elective presidents whenever possible. The fact that the two antagonistic parties involving local elected Albanian and Serbian leaders had begun to talk among themselves with the UN Regional Administrator acting as an honest broker was by it self a diplomatic success considering that there were no direct communication between them after the bloody conflict. There were frequent outburst of violence between the two ethnic communities separated by the bridge dividing the Albanian majority in the South and the Serbian majority in the north.
This painstaking process of dialogue and negotiations between Kosovo Albanians and the Serbian leadership in Mitrovica region significantly contributed to the eventual resolution of the complex issue of the status of Kosovo. Though there was continued opposition from Belgrade backed by Russia, Kosovo declared its independence through a vote of the parliament on February 17, 2008.
I wish to place on record that during my tenure with UNMIK I received invaluable support and guidance from the Deputy Secretary General (DSRG) Mr. Tom Koenig. He is to my mind, one of the finest and dedicated breed of eminent German personalities I had the privilege of interacting and working with him among other distinguish personalities.
The historic process of building a democratic, multi-religious and multi-cultural Kosovo is ongoing. Its success is crucial to building democratic multi cultural, multi religious societies in other states of former Yugoslavia particularly in Serbia dominated by the rise of the radicals and haunted by the ghost of Melosovic. The international community support to the process of Ensuring peace and stability in the Balkans is essential for achieving global peace and for success in the fight against the menace of terrorism, militancy and extremism afflicting the world at large.
The recognition of Kosovo by Bangladesh would be mutually benefited. Politically, the vision of two countries is more or less identical. Both Bangladesh and Kosovo are Muslim majority countries with secular orientations.  About 90 percent of the Kosovo people are Muslims but they are secular and tolerant like Bangladeshis. They are more proud of their Albanian culture than their religion,which they consider as a personal matter. They are culturally rich nation music, dance, art, literature, painting etc. are part of their life like Bangladeshis.  Kosovo is an excellent example of multi cultural, religious, tolerant, and democratic society in the heart of Europe. This is significant. Bangladesh is also multi cultural, religious, tolerant, democratic, and secular state. Hence two muslim majority tolerant democratic and secular states would have favorable impact on other emerging nations with muslim majority populations.
The aspiration of Kosovo to join European Union is much significant. They have scarce resources but with dynamic young population they want to create a modern, forward looking nation. Currently their emphasis is on revamping their education sector to lay the basis of an enlightened society, among other priorities.  When I asked a gathering of young people as to what kind of university they want to have. They said that, they want first class English medium Universities along with Albanian ones so that they can integrate with modern world and become competitive. A war ravaged economy needs everything to rebuild their economy for development. Kosovo is seeking economic cooperation involving joint venture projects, investments, banking and need help in agriculture sector etc.  Kosovans see Bangladesh as model of war ravaged country, which has achieved remarkable development since its Independence. Kosovo can, therefore, be a promising destination for our businessmen and Private sector investments in particular as the price of goods in Europe are increasingly becoming costlier. Bangladesh would need to tap the opportunity in Kosovo given its needs.
Of the lessons learnt from UN experience in Kosovo is that there is no durable military solution to essentially political, religious, sectarian ethnic and such conflicts. It is time for the world to opt for patient negotiations and diplomacy. The outcome achieved through such peaceful means are generally more lasting as violence, conflicts and wars create perpetual hatred in the hearts and minds of the people.
It is said 'If war begins in the hearts and minds of the people, it is in their hearts that defenses of peace should be built'. In the ultimate analysis nations and peoples cutting across geographical boundaries and all forms of divides and differences. We will have to work collectively to find non-violent resolutions to all problems, disputes afflicting the globe for peace and development, to banish the scourge of poverty, illiteracy and to overcome man made and natural disasters.
I would like to thank Prime Minister of Bangladesh and her Government for giving Republic of Kosovo official recognition. This would pave the way for a strong bond of friendship between the two countries, the governments and the peoples. I also wish to express my sincere appreciation and thanks to Prof Dr Nazmul Ahsan Kalimullah Secretary General Bangladesh Kosovo Forum (BKF) along with other colleagues for their tiring effort and support for the recognition of Kosovo by Bangladesh.
[The writer is a career diplomat and a former UN Regional Administrator in Kosovo]

0 Comments. Share your thoughts also.
Write a comment
Add Rate

News Archive

Inside The New Nation

Editorial »

River erosion now adds to flood woes

REPEATED environmental disasters seem to take heavy toll on the people of this country this year. Followed by unprecedented off-season heavy rainfall, landslides, flash floods and the ongoing floods again, the newest woe that hits the people is unprecedented river erosions in the north and middle parts of the country. ...

Cricket »

Mominul to replace Mosaddek in 14-member national squad

A day after his omission from the team, top order batsman and most consistent performer in the longer version cricket Mominul Haque was recalled to the Bangladesh's squad on Sunday for the first Test against touring Australia scheduled to begin on August 27 at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium (SBNCS) in ...

Entertainment »

I have left everything for films and there is no looking back: Srinidhi Shetty

Miss Supranational 2016 Srinidhi Shetty is an engineer, model and soon to be actress. Srinidhi started her pageant career after she finished her engineering degree from Bengaluru. She then participated in Yamaha Fascino Miss Diva 2016 and Miss Supernational 2016. 2016 has been Srinidhi's reigning year as Miss Supranational and ...

International »

Iraq begins battle to retake Tal Afar, IS bastion near Mosul

AFP, Baghdad :Iraqi forces on Sunday launched an assault to retake the northern city of Tal Afar from the Islamic State group, after ousting the jihadists from Mosul last month.Tal Afar lies around 70 kilometres (45 miles) west of second city Mosul, which Iraqi forces recaptured in early July in ...

City »

Chairman of Awami Juba League (AJL) Omar Faruque Chowdhury speaking at a memorial meeting on August 21 grenade attack victims organised by (AJL) at Shilpakala Academy in the city on Sunday.

Cricket »

Members of Australian Cricket team during their practice session at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Mirpur on Saturday.

Sports »

Farah bids to give British fans memorable farewell

British athletics great Mo Farah will hope his final track race on home turf on Sunday will have a happier ending than last Saturday's world 5,000 metres final. The 34-year-old, who will compete in the 3,000 metres at the Diamond League meeting in Birmingham, produced a courageous performance just falling ...

Editorial »

Berlin confce to protect Sundarbans

A EUROPEAN conference on Sundarbans started in German capital Berlin yesterday to discuss how to protect the world's greatest mangrove forest from destruction at a time when our government is determined to continue with the construction of the giant Rampal Coal-fired Plant. It is being built as a joint venture ...

Entertainment »

Sonam to act in the film adaptation of The Zoya Factor

Sonam Kapoor had reportedly signed on for the movie adaptation of Anuja Chauhan's Battle For Bittora opposite Fawad Khan. But the film never materialised as relations between India and Pakistan soured. Now, the buzz is that she's been signed on for another movie adaptation of Anuja Chauhan's The Zoya Factor.  ...

City »

Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader, among others, at a discussion on 42nd martyrdom anniversary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and National Mourning Day organised by Bangladesh Awami Juba League in the auditorium of the city's Engineers' Institution on Saturday.

International »

India wildlife reserve park devastated by monsoon floods

AP, Guahati :Rising floodwaters have inundated large parts of a famous wildlife reserve park in northeastern India, killing more than 225 animals and forcing hundreds of other animals to flee, the park director said Saturday.Around 15 rhinos, 185 deer and at least one Royal Bengal tiger have died in the ...

Editorial »

Import is not enough; make sure people get rice at low cost

THE country is apparently facing acute food shortage; which is evident from a government decision to increase food grains import to 20 lakh tonnes this year from earlier announced import at 11 lakh tonnes. The cause of the sudden rise in import is that the country has lost over 20 ...

Sports »

Thailand`s Pornchai Kaokaew (center) kicks a ball against Indonesia's Saiful Rijai (left) and Syamsul Hadi during the men's Sepak Takraw Regu competition at South East Asian Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Friday.


Entertainment »

Friends & Family bring in Sangeeta Ahir`s birthday with a bang

Even though once and still considered a taboo, Suicide and depression are rarely the theme of films in Indian cinema. Depression is alarmingly rising in the youth and adults in India making it a major cause of concern. Depression is usually caused by traumatic experiences, bad relationships, anxiety, and low ...

International »

Civilian deaths surge in Raqqa as IS tactics slow US-backed advances

VOA News :As U.S.-backed forces continue to make slow progress in their offensive to oust Islamic State (IS) from its self-proclaimed capital of Raqqa, thousands of civilians who are trapped in the city face an increasing danger of getting caught in crossfire, rights organizations and local activists warn.Officials from the ...

Items that you save may be read at any time on your computer, iPad, iPhone or Android devices.
Are you new to our website? Do you have already an account at our website?
Create An Account Log in here
Email this news to a friend or like someone
Write a comment to this news