Muslim State of Kosovo Opens Its Embassy in Jerusalem

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The Parliament building of the Republic of Kosovo in the capital of Prishtina.
The Parliament building of the Republic of Kosovo in the capital of Prishtina. (AFP)



Kosovo opened its embassy to Israel in Jerusalem on Sunday in its latest effort to cut itself from links with failed Arab leadership in West Bank also known as Judea and Samaria.



Geographically tiny but geopolitically extremely important country in the Balkans is joining the United States and Guatemala as the only countries with embassies in a city whose status is at the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Muslim-majority Kosovo promised to locate its embassy in Jerusalem when it established diplomatic ties with Israel last year under U.S. sponsorship.

Kosovo’s Foreign Ministry said on Twitter that with the embassy’s opening, “the pledge given in the Oval Office today is finally fulfilled”.

In the early 1990s Christian-Orthodox Serbs launched massacres of Kosovo Albanians and buried them is mass graves. The discovery of one of such graves led to NATO intervention in the war in Balkans which erupted after the dissolution of Yugoslavia.

On June 10, 1999, the United Nations Security Council passed a resolution which ended the war, established a NATO peacekeeping force in Kosovo, and provided for some autonomy which included a 120-member assembly. The inspirations of Kosovo Albanians for an independent state had increased in few years.  When it was clear that the state is the best solution that will protect them from attacks President Bush Administration helped to prepare such a declaration.

Four days after Kosovo Parliament promulgated the act of sovereignty, the United States together with France, Germany, Italy, and Australia recognised its independence. By mid-2009 63 countries, including Israel, around the world followed the example of the first five world economies.

In 2021, Israel sees its new ties with Kosovo as part of its broader normalisation with Arab and Muslim countries under agreements sponsored by former U.S. President Donald Trump.

Mr. Wasel Abu Youssef, a member of the executive committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization, said the opening of Kosovo’s embassy in Jerusalem contradicted U.N. resolutions and aimed to “weaken the Palestinian cause”.

On Thursday, the Czech Republic opened a diplomatic office in Jerusalem, a branch of its embassy in Tel Aviv, a move that drew condemnation from the Palestinians and Arab League.

The status of Jerusalem is one of the thorniest obstacles to forging a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians, who want East Jerusalem as their capital. But their demand is impossible to be fulfilled since during nearly fifty years of its residence in Judea and Samaria, the Arafat successors are still dreaming about the destruction of Israel.

Israel regained East Jerusalem after the 1967 conflict with Jordania.

 


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