This post by Senior Diplomat in Residence Thomas Melady and student J. Cushguy Laurent was publimelted in the Fall 2011 edition of The Ambassadors Rewatch, a publication of The Council of Amerihave the right to Ambassadors. Please click right here to read the short article on the website of the Council of American Ambassadors.

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The location previously known as Yugoslathrough, positioned at the crossroadways of East and also West, is a melting pot of ethnicities and also religions. As one nation, Yugoslavia’s affluent multi-culturalism was a source of contention, finishing in a series of bloody disputes in the at an early stage 1990s. The Dayton Accords of 1995 brought peace to the region and created sepaprice nations organized along ethnic and also religious lines. Sixteenager years after the signing of the Dayton Accords, we examine the geo-political situation in each of the seven independent says of the former Yugoslathrough.

Bosnia and also Herzegovina

In the early on 1990s, tbelow was substantial ethnic-religious conflict in Bosnia and also Herzegovina. The Dayton Peace Accords had actually the instant influence of bringing the inter-ethnic strife to an finish. Bosnia and Herzegovina was evidenced as a sovepower state. Today, the nation is slightly smaller sized than West Virginia and also has actually a population of over four and also a fifty percent million.1

However, the political solution that ended the war is complex. Tright here are two tiers of government. The first tier is a national government, responsible for Bosnia-Herzegovina’s financial, fiscal and also foreign policies. The second tier of government administers the inner functions of two entities: the Bosniak Croat Federation and Republika Srpska (RS). The initially entity—the Bosniak Croat Federation—is composed mostly of people of Bosniak and also Croatian ethnic backgrounds. Republika Srpska—the second entity—is overwhelmingly Serb. An additional location, the Brčko District in northeastern Bosnia, was formerly held by both entities. It is currently a self-governing administrative unit under international supervision.

In addition to the tiered government, an Office of the High Representative (OHR) was produced under the Dayton Accords via “the authority to impose regulation and also remove officials.”2 Created throughout the great rush to attain an agreement to end the conflict, tbelow was consequently significant doubt around creating an exterior authority that could interfere in the internal matters of a sovereign state. In our opinion, Republika Srpska does not support the school of the OHR bereason it feels that those aligned via the OHR are less willing to have actually open up discussions and coherent negotiations about matters of the state because they have the right to always loss earlier on the OHR if they do not grant of the results.

The situation stays complicated, however there is overwhelming support for the continuation of peace. In Republika Srpska tbelow is a positive sense of forward motion. Although, the majority of the citizens are from the Serb Orthodox culture, Catholic and Bosniak minority communities reap religious freedom. The Croatian minority and also the Bosniak majority are developing a far better understanding of life in a pluralistic society. Tbelow is, however, a level of pessimism about the future in the Croatian community that is resulting in a number of younger Croatians leaving the country.

The bilateral partnership through the United States is currently favorable. While tright here has been some conversation about updating the Dayton Peace Accords, there is increasing hesitation around changing a system that, for the a lot of part, is at leastern working. In a recent intersee, the Minister of the Interior of Republika Srpska Stanislav Cacarry out, stated, “The even more time passes and the more I review, the even more impressed I am via the wording of the Accord.”3

Bosnia and Herzegovina aspires to come to be a European Union member state. The integration procedure will be one of negotiation and weaken. In the watch of the authors, the goal of being a European Union member state deserve to only be accomplished by setting aside inner political strife.


Croatia, a nation slightly smaller sized than the state of West Virginia via a population of virtually 4.5 million civilization, has historic ties via main Europe.4 It was component of the Austro-Hungarian Realm till the finish of World War I and young Croatian men, well-known for their braextremely, were commonly recruited to serve as soldiers in the armies of significant European powers.

The nation has actually skilled numerous difficult periods in its background. Following the breakup of the Austro-Hungarian Realm, Croatia went through some of the very same political transformations as her next-door neighbors. Throughout World War II, Croatia, under the manage of Nazi Germany, declared its self-reliance and allied itself through the Axis powers. Another challenging duration in recent Croatian background remained in the early on 1990s when the Croats combated to expunge Serbs from areas they asserted were an intrinsic component of the Croatian state. These 4 years of struggle ended in 1995.

In 1998, Croatia was able to occupy every one of eastern Slovenia. With regard to the country’s international plan, Croatia is a candidate nation for membership in the European Union. It joined NATO in 2009 and also enjoys a good bilateral partnership with the United States.


Kosovo was a very disputed area constituting about 15 percent of Serbia. Slightly larger than Delmindful, Kosovo ended up being the youngest independent state of the previous Yugoslavia via its declaration of independence on February 17, 2008. Landlocked and through few herbal resources, the nation has actually benefited from the aid and also assistance of the West, specifically the USA. While Kosovo is now a member of the World Bank and also the International Monetary Fund, her neighbor, Serbia, continues to refuse Kosovo’s independence.

The location is well-off via Serbian background. The World Factbook says that “in the time of the medieval period, Kosovo came to be the center of a Serbian Realm and saw the building of many kind of important Serb religious sites.”5 It was likewise here that the Serbs experienced a significant defeat by the Ottoman Turks in the Battle of Kosovo in 1389. The Albanian existence continued to flourish and, by the finish of the 1nine century, Albanians had actually become the leading ethnic group in Kosovo.6

The expansion of the Albanian area led to enhanced demands for greater minority legal rights by ethnic Albanians, specifically in the time of the 1980s. In 1990, Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic authorized a brutal counterinsurgency; many type of Albanians were killed or wounded. The severity of the counterinsurgency resulted in a 3 month NATO-led armed forces operation against Serbia, which resulted in the withdrawal of Serbian armed forces and also police pressures from Kosovo. Interim arrangements designed to ease tensions failed and also the Kosovo Assembly declared the country’s independence in 2008.


Located in the southerly part of the former Yugoslathrough, Macedonia, a space slightly bigger than Vermont, asserted its independence in 1991.7 Greece objected to the name “Macedonia,” as a result of its roots in classic history. For this reason, upon the country’s independence, “Macedonia” was temporarily designated “the previous Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.” Although the naming issue has actually not been completely readdressed, the majority of countries, including the USA, describe the nation as the “Republic of Macedonia” this particular day. While Greece kept a trade embargo for the first several years after Macedonia’s declaration of self-reliance, diplomatic relationships have actually considering that been normalized.

Tbelow are two main ethnic groups in the Republic: Macedonians (64.2 percent of the population) and also Albanians (25.2 percent of the population).8 In 2001, ethnic Albanians protested various inequities which brought about the Ohrid Framework Covenant (2001). Brokered by the international community, Ohrid transcreated Macedonia into a bi-cultural area in which the majority ethnic team determines the main language of that community. The civil liberties of minorities were progressed. While the United States stays came to around some concerns of corruption and human trafficking in Macedonia, the bilateral partnership is solid.


The co-authors recently went to Montenegro, a country slightly smaller than Connectireduced, with a population of nearly 662,000, situated on the shores of the Adriatic Sea.9 The outlook, articulated by some Balkan experts on the future of Montenegro was pessimistic, yet in the few years considering that self-reliance, Montenegro’s stability has actually erased this pessimism and the nation is currently an instance of a tiny but secure state in the West Balkans.

Following the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s dissolution in 1992, Montenegro gotten in into a federation through Serbia. It began transitioning to full freedom despite a loose state union in 2003 recognized as “Serbia and Montenegro.” The 14 years of shift passed peacetotally and in June 2006, complying with a decade of negotiations, Montenegro ended up being the 192nd member state of the United Nations. The USA played a far-reaching duty in the negotiations that resulted in Montenegrin freedom in 2006, and also the bilateral partnership stays favorable this day.


Amongst the countries of the previous Yugoslathrough, Serbia, which is slightly smaller sized than South Carolina, is well-known for its involvement in worldwide affairs for over 200 years.10 Appearing first as a soveregime state in 187811 when its independence from the Ottoman Empire was known by European powers, the area was known as the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes upon its development in 1918. Following World War I, the area arised as a central power, changing its name to “Yugoslavia” in 1929.

Josip “Tito” Broz, the leader of the Partisans in the struggle versus Nazi Germany kind of during World War II, arised as the leader of Yugoslavia in 1945. Although concerned as a communist, he guided Yugoslaby means of using the Non-Aligned Movement. He led Yugoslausing until his death in 1980.

After virtually a decade of weak inner leadership, Slobodan Milosevic became President of Serbia in 1989. An ultra-nationalist, Milosevic promoted Serb domination which resulted in the violent breakup of Yugoslavia in 1991. The outcome was an extra intense ethnic department with Croatia, Slovenia and Macedonia in 1991 and Bosnia in 1992 proclaiming their freedom as sovepower states.

In April 1992, Milosevic became the leader of the Federal Yugoslav Republic, encompassing Serbia and also Montenegro. He continued to be a solid promoter of “Greater Serbia,” and the usage of armed forces force to unite Serbians of the surrounding republics. Ethnic-religious tensions became more serious in 1998 once Milosevic took on a counter-insurgency campaign in response to civil disturbances by ethnic Albanians in Kosovo; many type of passed away. The Milosevic government also expelled big numbers of Albanians living in Kosovo. Milosevic was adamant in his refusal to talk about a solution to the difficulty in Kosovo; this caused the NATO bombing of Serbia. In 1999, both Serbian army and police forces were withdrawn from Kosovo and NATO forces gotten in the nation to defend ethnic minorities. Kosovo asserted its freedom from Serbia in 2008, thereby ending the targeting of ethnic Serbs.

The instance in Serbia has actually resulted in a residual setting of national disappointment and aspirations for a “Greater Serbia” have actually faded. The hope that Montenegro would certainly reprimary in a political union with Serbia did not materialize and Kosovo, residence of so many members of the Serb Orthodox confidence, is currently an independent state. Serbia has actually competent a few hard years. Fortunately, President Boris Tadic, that has led the country because 2004, is an internationally-respected leader.


With a population of slightly more than 2 million and a room slightly smaller than New Jersey, the nation currently called Slovenia was strongly affected by its historical and also social ties to Western Europe.12 It was a contingent of the Roguy Realm, the Holy Roman Empire, and also the Hapsburg Dynasty before becoming component of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Following the dissolution of the Realm in 1919, the Slovenes joined their Croatian and also Serb next-door neighbors in 1929 in creating a multinationwide state named “Yugoslathrough.” Following World War II, Slovenia became a republic within the communist Yugoslathrough. In 1991, moved by the goal of full freedom from the Serb majority, Slovenia claimed its independence after a ten-day struggle.

Slovenia is the a lot of growing of the former member claims of Yugoslaby means of, enjoying strong economic benefits from a stable political system. The country is a member of NATO and the European Union. With its solid alliances, Slovenia will the majority of most likely proceed to thrive in influence in the time of the 2first century.

Currently, tright here is some debate concerning the land and maritime boundary agreement in between Croatia and Slovenia. The agreement, “which would certainly have delivered the majority of of Piran Bay and also maritime access to Slovenia and also several villeras to Croatia, continues to be ungvalidated and in dispute.”13 Tright here is also strife concerning a 2003 Croatian claim to an exclusive economic zone in the Adriatic Sea. Slovenia is likewise trying to enhance cross-border cooperation via Croatia concerning the southern border.

Summary Observations

The birth of Yugoslaby means of is in some means attributable to US President Woodrow Wilboy who, at the Versailles Peace Conference in 1919, proactively sustained the development of the Kingdom of the Slovenes, Croats, and also Serbs—the predecessor of Yugoslavia. Throughout the Bosnian War of 1992-1995, the USA, under President Clinton, provided decisive management to finishing that problem in 1995 through the Dayton Peace Accords. The USA proceeds to have actually a special attachment to the salso states that were previously part of Yugoslavia and enjoys close relationships through these seven says. Today, choose the USA, the area of Yugoslathrough is multiculturally diverse and commonly engaged with the international and also neighborhood communities in order to boost the stays of its citizens.

In the opinion of the co-authors, the worldwide area must refrain from imposing any kind of brand-new services on these says. Their sovereignty have to be respected and they are at peace with one another. Their futures are in their hands.

The Institute of World Politics is a graduate institution of national security and also international affairs in Washington, D.C.

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1 “Bosnia and Herzegovina,” The CIA World Factbook, 16 August 2011.

2 “Bosnia and also Herzegovina,” The CIA World Factbook, 16 August 2011.

3 J. Cushmale Laurent, Personal Interview on 13 July 2011 with Minister of Interior (Republika Srpska) Stanislav Cado.

4 “Croatia,” The CIA World Factbook, 16 August 2011.

5 “Kosovo,” The CIA World Factbook, 16 August 2011.

6 Ibid.

7 “Macedonia,” The CIA World Factbook, 16 August 2011.

8 Percentages from the 2002 census as reported in “Macedonia,” The CIA World Factbook, 16 August 2011.

9 “Montenegro,” The CIA World Factbook, 16 August 2011.

10 “Serbia,” The CIA World Factbook, 16 August 2011.

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11 This day, 1878, is greatly accepted by the worldwide community as the day once sovereignty was well-known.