Declaration of independence: Pakistan, India in a bind over Kosovo status

Published: April 10, 2011
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Indian paramilitry personnel stand guard at a closed market during a strike in Srinagar on April 9, 2011. PHOTO: AFP

Indian paramilitry personnel stand guard at a closed market during a strike in Srinagar on April 9, 2011. PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: 

Pakistan’s obsession with Kashmir and India’s fixation over it is withholding them both from recognising Kosovo as an independent state.

A Foreign Office official told The Express Tribune that although Pakistan is eager to recognise Kosovo, “(it) finds it impossible to translate its desire into a reality.”

“Islamabad is willing to recognise the Kosovo Republic, but the situation in Balochistan does not allow us to do so,” the official said.

India is also in a similar bind, the source said, adding: “Delhi is (also) willing to recognise … Kosovo, but the situation in disputed Kashmir has barred it from doing so.”

Pakistan, he said, “is being pressed by several Muslim states and the United States to recognise the republic”. Also, the people of Kosovo, whom it had been supporting in their freedom struggle against Serbian occupation, “are also eagerly awaiting recognition by Pakistan”.

As many as 75 UN member countries, including the US, Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan, have recognised it “but we are sorry we can’t do so,” the official said.

“The reason is that Kosovo had declared its independence unilaterally after a long struggle against the republic of Serbia … Pakistan fears that a parallel could be drawn between Kosovo and Balochistan, even if a few Baloch (insurgents) were to declare independence unilaterally.”

A leading Indian daily The Hindu cited several US embassy cables, according to which the US was pressing India to ‘quickly’ recognise Kosovo’s independence, but New Delhi was worried that a parallel would be drawn between Kosovo and Kashmir.

The cables, declassified by political counsellor Ted Osius of the New Delhi embassy, were accessed by The Hindu via Wikileaks.

On July 22 last year, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled that Kosovo’s declaration of independence did not violate any international law, which its president said contains no “prohibitions on declarations of independence”.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 10th, 2011.

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Reader Comments (12)

  • Apr 10, 2011 - 11:33AM

    Jeez! these politicians! As though not recognizing Kosovo will change the fact that it exists!Recommend

  • DumVidyut
    Apr 10, 2011 - 12:18PM

    YES KOSOVO EXISTS AS KOSOVO I METOHIJA–A PART OF SERBIA! JUST ASK RUSSIA AND CHINA WHO ARE PERMANENT MAJOR POWERS ON THE UN SECURITY COUNCIL!Recommend

  • Mendo
    Apr 10, 2011 - 4:40PM

    Kosovo is Kosovo and never will be Serbian and never was. I just hope India and Pakistan will recognise Kosovo soon. Recommend

  • Une
    Apr 10, 2011 - 4:41PM

    Hey. While it is true that china and Russia are part of the UN security council so is USA, France and England. And they all have recognized Kosova. Recommend

  • Denis
    Apr 10, 2011 - 4:55PM

    Kosovo exists as an independent and sovereign country regardless if Serbia accepts the fact or not. Most major powers have recognised it. Just because Russia and China are againist it, doesn’t mean it does not exist. Same thing happened back in 1999. China and Russia were against bombing Serbia, but it happened. Ask the major powers in Nato if Kosovo exists and they will give you a very clear answer. Even the European Union knows so, but they can’t just throw the truth to Serbia at once, otherwise it’ll be too much weight for the Serbian people to bear, and violence will erupt and then they’ll have to bomb Nokia Serbia ONCE again!!
    May God Bless The Republic Of KosovoRecommend

  • Apr 10, 2011 - 9:32PM

    How can any country support Serbia’s quest to dominate other nations, after what happened in Bosnia. Serbs killed 8 thousand Bosnian-Muslims in a single day in Srebrencia. Serbia still holds 49% of Bosnia occupied and prevents it from being an independent country.

    Pakistan and India and others should ask themeselves why all neighbouring countries of Kosovo, with the exception of Serbia, have recognized Kosovo’s independence. What’s the point for the countries hunderd of miles away to refuse to recgonize it? This is non sens and not fair. Recommend

  • Shepndi
    Apr 11, 2011 - 4:12AM

    I really do not understand those Serbs, Russians or all those who do not like Kosova. How come they keep saying Kosova is part of Serbia? I go in Kosova ever year. I have stamps on my passport which says Kosova Republic. I go around Kosova and see no Police who works for Serbia within Kosova.

    Are you guys on drugs or still sleeping in the past? How can you keep thinking that Kosova is still Serbia?

    What you can say is that in my dreams it is still under Serbia but in real life it’s not. This has more understanding.

    Well India and Pakistan are not enemies with us nor do they hate us. If they do not accept us as a country we do not have to be mad because they have their own problems.

    What makes me laugh is how come these guys still think kosova is Serbia.

    Guys keep dreaming.Recommend

  • UN
    Apr 11, 2011 - 7:47PM

    @Shepndi:

    Well if it wasn’t part of Serbia it would be a country recognized by the UN, it would participate in the Olympics/FIFA, and the Kosovo Passport would be accepted anywhere… but it has none of these.

    Guess what you can walk around RS in Bosnia and see it has its own government, police force, and laws, but are people on “drugs or sleeping in the past” to think that it is still part of Bosnia?

    Too many double standards, always looking for everything your way with no compromise

    I am not from the Balkans but to me, borders need to be disputed and changed accordingly for everyone to be accepted within the EU.

    Let Pristina join Albania, let the North stay with Serbia, let RS join Serbia, let the Croats in the south of Bosnia join Croatia. Each ethnicity just complains to be with their own nation, yet the west is trying to force them to live together after the west supported them to break up? And all that is doing is causing a complete halt on each of the government from focusing on real issues of making a better living for their people. Each of these countries will continue to be paralyzed in international bodies until everyone just comes to the table and peacefully compromises on border issuesRecommend

  • corrections
    Apr 11, 2011 - 8:00PM

    @Une:

    The point is that it only takes 1 to veto, and it isn’t England it is the United Kingdom… last time I checked Northern Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales weren’t independent countries. How ignorant of you.

    @Denis:

    If it does exist than why do Kosovo citizens have to use Serbia passports when going to Spain, Brazil, India, Russia, Mexico, Argentina, etc. Looks like they won’t be visiting the Olympics or World cup in Brazil, well its not like they have any national teams anyways accepted by these world events…

    Kosovo is FAR from existing and enjoying international sanctions, plus the west is way too occupied in other parts of the world, their lies are slowly surfacing about what happened in Kosovo, and lets be honest Obama and the US people are not wanting to stick their foot in anymore countries. Americans are shouting for Kosovo I think they are shouting for their troops to come home…Recommend

  • Yogesh Khandke
    Apr 12, 2011 - 11:16PM

    In 1947, India was partitioned into Pakistan and India, much like the former Yugoslavia. The demand for partition was based on the assumption that Hindus and Muslims cannot live as citizens of one country. Today there are about 150 million Muslims in India including 5-6 million in its state of Jammu and Kashmir. Parts of Jammu and Kashmir are illegally occupied by Pakistan and China. If 150 million Muslims can live as citizens of a secular India, what is the raison d’etre for Kosovo, can it not take the lesson from Pakistan, that religion and hatred cannot be the basis of nationhood. Pakistan has been facing centrifugal pressures from the day it was formed, loosing a majority of its population when Bangladesh fought and gained independence, and as this report informs, faces a secessionist nationality in Baluchistan.Recommend

  • chandran
    Apr 13, 2011 - 11:49AM

    again the K word comes Kosovo,Kashmir,Karachi what a smillarityRecommend

  • Denis
    Apr 13, 2011 - 5:12PM

    This topic could go on and on forever. The year is 2011. What happened in the past is thousands and thousands of innocent people died in Slovenia(not alot there) Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo. Who was the predator? The would be Serbia. What was the solution in Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia? Independence and they got it. Moving on; However Kosovo was a very special part and still is a special part of Former Yugoslavia. Does Trepca ring a bell to any of you? That is the reason why today Serbia does not want to accept Kosovo’s independence. 70% of Serbia’s wealth was in Kosovo(Trepca). Having said that when Kosovo declared herself independent, she knew not everyone would be happy about it and someone would get in her way, however considering the fact of what happened in the past Kosovo and its people were brave enough to go ahead with the independence knowing that they would be isolated from the world for some time. That is the past. The present is, Kosovo is Independent as we speak, and is in the process of being recognised by more countries as days pass by. I mean running a country is not an easy task but I do give credit to its leaders and Kosovo’s Police.They’re learning how to run a country and getting better at it each and every day. P.s When the negotiations failed in Dec 2007 betwen Serbia and Kosovo, the international community told Kosovo to go ahead with its independence and Kosovo did do that the following year in Feb 2008. That same year Brussels signed the SAA agreement with Serbia. Also to ease the loss of pain for Serbia the European Union told the Serbs “You don’t require a visa to travel around Europe anymore as of Dec 31st 2009”. Very well. July 22nd comes and The most respected International Court ruled that Kosovo’s Declaration of Independence did not violate international law. Everybody saw that coming except Serbia. Now the EU had to do something about satisfying Serbia’s side so they told them, the talks for being a candidate for EU membership would start sometime in late 2011. Also that same time after the international court gave ruled Kosovo’s Declaration of Independence legal, Serbia was going to the United Nations to call out for new negotiations on Kosovo’s Status. What happened next is Germany sent out one of its leaders to let Serbia know in closed doors that, either you change that resolution to only call out for “Talks on technical issues” in the UN meeting or the billion dollar trade that is betwen our countries will stop. So serbia did change its resolution to what Germany told her to. Serbia knows Kosovo’s gone, however for its leaders to stay in power, they have to act as if they’re fighting for their territorial integrity just to show its citizens they’re doing something about it.
    God Bless The Republic Of Kosovo!Recommend

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