Monday, September 19, 2005

Government asks for substantial changes in Kosovo Police Law

Zëri reports on the front page that at a time when UNMIK chief is expected to sign the ‘Police Law’, some remarks from the Government of Kosovo could turn the process back to the beginning.

A working group assigned by PM Kosumi has found many flaws in the final draft of the law and have drafted their own version, which has already been sent to the UNMIK Pillar I and to the SRSG, said the paper.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

History of Kosovo

Modern province has only existed as a political or territorial entity since 1945. Before then, its territory was ruled entirely or partially by Italian-occupied Albania, Serbia, Montenegro, the Ottoman Empire, the Byzantine Empire, Bulgaria and the Roman Empire. Some have suggested that Kosovo has been a single distinctive region since ancient times but this is strongly contradicted by archaeological findings and historic records. Nor has Kosovo's population been ethnically consistent over the years: the province's complex ethnic map has included Latins, Turks, Roma, Gorani (Slavic Muslims), Circassians, and Jews in addition to Serbs and Albanians.

Little is known about Kosovo before about the 11th century AD. The region was certainly inhabited in prehistoric times: in particular, Bronze and Iron Age tombs have been found only in Metohia, and not in Kosovo. After the Indo-European invasion, Kosovo became inhabited by Illyrian and Thracian tribes, such as the Dardani and the Triballi. Later, the whole territory of Kosovo became part of the Roman Empire, although it is not clear whether it was part of the province of Moesia or was divided between Dalmatia and Moesia (a view which is supported by some archaeological evidence). [1]
According to most historians, Serbs entered the Balkans around the late 6th or early 7th century AD, possibly migrating from the northern Caucasus where Ptolemy placed the "Serboi" in the 2nd century AD. The initial spread of the Slavic population of the Balkans was much larger than today, reaching well into Greece and Albania. Placenames derived from Slavic root words are still widespread in the remaining non-Slav Balkan countries and particularly northern Albania to this day (Kamenica).
The origins of the Albanians are much less clear. Most believe that they are descended from the Illyrians, ancient inhabitants of the western Balkans in Roman times, although Romanian historians have suggested that they may alternatively be descended from the ancient Thracians, who inhabited the Eastern and Central Balkans. Albanian historians claim that in around the 6th century the Illyrians were forced south into what is now Albania by Slav tribes - the predecessors of modern day Serbs. This claim is challenged by the fact that Byzantine chroniclers date the arrival of Albanians (Alvanoi) from Southern Italy at 1043 in central Albania (Durrës) as mercenaries in the army of Maniakis. Some historians, including Serbian, claim the Albanians originate from the Caucasus, particularly Caucasian Albania, but most historians dispute these claims. Albanian linguists suggest that the vocabulary and structure of the Albanian language points to a much earlier presence in the western Balkans. See also: Origin of Albanians
The Kosovo region lay on the outer fringes of the Byzantine Empire and lay directly in the path of the Slav expansion. From about the 850s until about 1014, it was ruled by Bulgaria. Byzantine control was subsequently reasserted by the forceful emperor Basil "the Bulgar Slayer". Serbia at this time did not exist: a number of small Slav kingdoms lay to the north and west of Kosovo, of which Raška (Rascia, central modern Serbia) and Dioclea (Montenegro and norther Albania) were the strongest. In the 1180s, the Serbian ruler Stefan Nemanja seized control of Dioclea and parts of Kosovo. His successor (also called Stefan) took control of the rest of Kosovo by 1216, creating a state incorporating most of modern Serbia-Montenegro.

Map: "Kosovo: History of a Balkan Hot Spot", 1998
During the rule of the Nemanjić dynasty, many Serbian Orthodox churches and monasteries were built throughout Serbian territory, particularly Kosovo which became the economic, demographic, religious and political heartland. The Nemanjić rulers alternatively used both Prizren and Priština as their capitals. Large estates were given to Serbian monasteries in Metohia (which included parts of Albania and Montenegro), for which the area earned the designation Metohia or "monastic land". The most prominent churches in Kosovo - the Patriarchate at Peć, the church at Gračanica and the monastery at Visoki Dečani near Dečani - were all founded during this period. Kosovo was economically important, as the modern Kosovo capital Priština was a major trading centre on routes leading to ports on the Adriatic Sea. As well, mining was an important industry in Novo Brdo and Janjevo which had its communities of émigré Saxonians miners and Ragusans merchants.
The ethnic composition of Kosovo's population during this period is a controversial issue among Serbian and Albanian historians. Serbs, Albanians and Vlachs were all clearly present, as all three groups were named explicitly in Serbian monastic charters or chrysobulls along with a token number of Greeks, Armenians and Bulgarians. A majority of the names given in the charters are overwhelmingly Slavic rather than Albanian. This has been interpreted as evidence of a crushing Serbian majority. However th chrysobulls show Serbian named sons to Albanian-named fathers and vice-versa. Albanian historians have suggested that this is evidence of cultural assimilation of an alleged pre-Ottoman Albanian population in Kosovo yet this is undermined by records of Serbian-named fathers giving sons Albanian names (which would surely not have happened if the assimilation was a one-way process) and the fact that such cases of mixed names represent a small fraction of less than a twentieth of all the names. This Serbian claim seems to be supported by the Turkish cadastral tax-census (defter) of 1455 which took into account religion and language and found an overwhelming Serb majority.
Ethnic identity in the Middle Ages was somewhat fluid throughout Europe and people at that time do not appear to have defined themselves rigidly by ethnic group. About all that can be said for sure is that Serbs appear to have been the dominant population culturally, and were probably a demographic majority as well.
In 1355, the Serbian state fell apart on the death of Tsar Stefan Dušan and dissolved into squabbling fiefdoms. The Ottoman Empire took the opportunity to exploit Serbian weakness and invaded, meeting the Serbian army on the field of Kosovo Polje on June 28, 1389. The Battle of Kosovo ended in the deaths of both the Serbian Prince Lazar and the Ottoman Sultan Murad I. Although the battle has been mythologised as a great Serbian defeat, at the time opinion was divided as to whether it was a Serbian defeat, a stalemate or even a Serbian victory. Serbia maintained its independence and sporadic control of Kosovo until a final defeat in 1455, following which it became part of the Ottoman Empire.
Kosovo from 1455 to 1912

Teritorry of today's province was for centuries ruled by the Ottoman Empire. During this period, several administrative districts (known as sancaks ("banners" or districts) each ruled by a sancakbeyi (roughly equivalent to "district lord")) have included parts of the territory as parts of their territories. Despite the imposition of Muslim rule, large numbers of Christians continued to live and sometimes even prosper under the Ottomans. A process of Islamisation began shortly after the beginning of Ottoman rule but it took a considerable amount of time - at least a century - and was concentrated at first on the towns. It appears that many Christian inhabitants converted directly to Islam, rather than being replaced by Muslims from outside Kosovo. A large part of the reason for the conversion was probably economic and social, as Muslims had considerably more rights and privileges than Christian subjects. Christian religious life nonetheless continued, with churches largely left alone by the Ottomans, but both the Orthodox and Catholic churches and their congregations suffered from high levels of taxation.
Around the 17th century, there is evidence of an increasingly visible Albanian population initially concentrated in Metohia. It has been claimed (often by Serbian historians) that this was the result of migrations out of the south-west (i.e. modern Albania), and that the putative migrants brought Islam with them. There is certainly evidence of some migration: many Kosovo Albanians have surnames characteristic of inhabitants of the northern Albanian region of Malësi. However, many others do not. It is also clear that many Slavs - presumably members of the Serbian Orthodox Church - converted to Islam under Ottoman rule. Today, most Slavic Muslims of Serbia live in the Sandžak region of southern Serbia, northwest of Kosovo. Historians believe that there was probably a pre-existing population of probably Catholic Albanians in Metohia who mostly converted to Islam, but remained strictly a minority in a still largely Serb-inhabited region.
In 1689, Kosovo was greatly disrupted by the Ottoman-Habsburg war (1683-1699), in one of the pivotal events in Serbian national mythology. In October 1689, a small Austrian force under Margrave Ludwig of Baden breached into Turkey and reached as far as Kosovo, following their earlier capture of Belgrade. Many Serbs and Albanians pledged their loyalty to the Austrians, some joining Baden's army. This was by no means a universal reaction; many other Serbs and Albanians fought alongside the Ottomans to resist the Austrian advance. A massive Ottoman counter-attack the following summer drove the Austrians back to their fortress at Niš, then back to Belgrade, then finally back across the Danube into Austria from whence they had come in the first place.
The Ottoman offensive was accompanied by savage reprisals and looting, prompting many Serbs - including Arsenije III, Patriarch of the Serbian Orthodox Church - to flee along with the Austrians. This event has been immortalised in Serbian history as the Velika Seoba or "Great Migration". It is traditionally said to have accounted for a huge exodus of hundreds of thousands of Serbian refugees from Kosovo and Serbia proper, which left a vacuum filled by a flood of Albanian immigrants. Arsenije himself wrote of a figure of "30,000 souls" (i.e. individuals) who fled with him to Austria, a figure confirmed by other sources.

Vilayet of Kosovo in 1878
In 1878, one of the four vilayets with Albanian inhabitants that formed the League of Prizren was Vilayet of Kosovo. The League's purpose was to resist both Ottoman rule and incursions by the newly emerging Balkan nations.
in 1910, an Albanian organised insurrection broke out in Priština and soon spread to the entire vilayet of Kosovo; lasting for three months. The Ottoman Sultan visited Kosovo in June 1911 during peace settlement talks covering all Albanian-inhabited areas.
20th century

Following the First Balkan War of 1912, Kosovo was internationally recognised as a part of Serbia and Metohia as a part of Montenegro at the Treaty of London in May 1913. In 1918, Serbia became a part of the newly formed Kingdom of Yugoslavia. Between the two world wars the Yugoslavian government tried to evacuate all the Albanian population from Kosovo and Macedonia sending them to Turkey and Albania and colonizing it with Serbian population. On March 7, 1937 a memorandum was presented to the government by Vaso Čubrilović from the Serbian Academy named Expulsion of the Albanians.
The partition of Yugoslavia, from 1941 and 1945, by the Axis Powers awarded most of the territory to the Italian-occupied Greater Albania, and smaller part of it to German-occupied Serbia and the Greater Bulgaria. During the occupation, thousands of Kosovo Serbs were expelled by armed Albanian groups, notably the Vulnetari militia. It is still not known exactly how many fell victim to this, but Serbian estimates put the figures at 10,000-40,000 killed with 70,000-100,000 expelled.

Kosovo within Serbia in 1946
Following the end of the war and the establishment of Tito's Communist regime, Kosovo was granted the status of an autonomous region of Serbia in 1946 and became an autonomous province in 1963. The Communist government did not permit the return of many of the refugees.
With the passing of the 1974 Yugoslavia constitution, Kosovo gained virtual self-government. The province's government has applied Albanian curriculum to Kosovo's schools: surplus and obsolete textbooks from Enver Hoxha's Albania were obtained and put into use.
Throughout the 1980s tensions between the Albanian and Serb communities in the province escalated. The Albanian community favoured greater autonomy for Kosovo, whilst Serbs favoured closer ties with the rest of Serbia. There was little appetite for unification with Albania itself, which was ruled by a Stalinist government and had considerably worse living standards than Kosovo.
Serbs living in Kosovo complained being discriminated against by the provincial government, notably by the local law enforcement authorities failing to punish reported crimes against Serbs. [2] The increasingly bitter atmosphere in Kosovo meant that even the most farcical incidents could become causes célèbres. When a Serbian farmer, Đorđe Martinović, turned up at a Kosovo hospital with a bottle in his rectum and a story about being assaulted in his field by "masked men", 216 prominent Serbian intellectuals signed a petition declaring that "the case of Đorđe Martinović has come to symbolize the predicament of all Serbs in Kosovo." Martinović's subsequent confession that his "assault" had been a botched act of self-gratification did nothing to defuse the ethnic tension that his case had produced.
Perhaps the most politically explosive complaint levelled by the Kosovo Serbs was that they were being neglected by the Communist authorities in Belgrade. In August 1987, during the dying days of Yugoslavia's Communist regime, Kosovo was visited by Slobodan Milošević, then a rising politician. He appealed to Serb nationalism to further his career. Having drawn huge crowds to a rally commemorating the Battle of Kosovo, he pledged to Kosovo Serbs that "No one should dare to beat you", and became an instant hero of Kosovo's Serbs. By the end of the year Milošević was in control of the Serbian government.
In 1989, the autonomy of Kosovo and the northern province of Vojvodina was drastically reduced by a Serbia-wide referendum. The referendum implemented a new constitution which allowed a multi-party system, introduced freedom of speech and promoted human rights. Even though in practice it was subverted by the Milošević's government, which resorted to rigging elections, controlled much of the news media, and was accused of abusing human rights of its opponents and national minorities, this was a step forward from the previous Communist constitution. It significantly reduced the provinces' rights, permitting the government of Serbia to exert direct control over many previously autonomous areas of governance. In particular, the constitutional changes handed control of the police, the court system, the economy, the education system and language policies to the Serbian government.
The new constitution was strongly opposed by many of Serbia's national minorities, who saw it as a means of imposing ethnically-based centralised rule on the provinces. Kosovo's Albanians refused to participate in the referendum, portraying it as illegitimate: as it was a Serbia-wide referendum and Albanians are a minority in Serbia as a whole, their participation would not have changed the outcome of the referendum whichever way they voted.
The provincial governments also opposed the new constitution. It had to be ratified by their assemblies, which effectively meant voting for their dissolution. Kosovo's assembly initially opposed the constitution but in March 1989, when the assembly met to discuss the proposals, tanks and armored cars surrounded the meeting place, forcing the delegates to accept the amendments.
The 1990s

After the constitutional changes, the parliaments of all Yugoslavian republics and provinces, which until then had MPs only from the Communist Party of Yugoslavia, were dissolved and multi-party elections were held for them. Kosovo Albanians refused to participate in the elections and held their own, unsanctioned elections instead. As election laws required (and still require) turnout higher than 50%, the parliament of Kosovo could not be established.
The new constitution abolished the individual provinces' official media, integrating them within the official media of Serbia while still retaining some programs in the Albanian language. The Albanian-language media in Kosovo was suppressed. Funding was withdrawn from state-owned media, including that in the Albanian language in Kosovo. The constitution made creating privately-owned media possible, however their functioning was very difficult because of high rents and restricting laws. State-owned Albanian language television or radio was also banned from broadcasting from Kosovo [3]. However, privately-owned Albanian media outlets appeared; of these, probably the most famous is "Koha Ditore", which was allowed to operate until late 1998 when it was closed after it published a calendar which was claimed to be a glorification of ethnic Albanian separatists.
The constitution also transferred control over state-owned companies to the Serbian government (at the time, most of the companies were state-owned and de jure they still are). In September 1990, up to 123,000 Albanian workers were fired from their positions in government and the media, as were teachers, doctors, and workers in government-controlled industries [4], provoking a general strike and mass unrest. Some of those who were not sacked quit in sympathy, refusing to work for the Serbian government. Although the government claimed that it was simply getting rid of old communist directors, the sackings were widely seen as a purge of ethnic Albanians.
The old Albanian educational curriculum and textbooks were revoked and new ones were created. The curriculum was (and still is, as that is the curriculum used for Albanians in Serbia outside Kosovo) basically the same as Serbian and that of all other nationalities in Serbia except that it had education on and in Albanian language. The new textbooks were (and still are) basically the same as those in Serbian, except that they were in the Albanian language. Education in Albanian was withdrawn in 1992 and re-established in 1994. [5] At the Priština University, which was seen as a centre of Kosovo Albanian cultural identity, education in the Albanian language was abolished and Albanian teachers were also sacked en masse. Albanians responded by boycotting state schools and setting up an unofficial parallel system of Albanian-language education.
Kosovo Albanians were outraged by what they saw as an attack on their rights. Following mass rioting and unrest from Albanians as well as outbreaks of inter-communal violence, in February 1990, a state of emergency was declared, and the presence of the Yugoslav Army and police was significantly increased to quell the unrest.
Unsanctioned elections were held in 1992, which overwhelmingly elected Ibrahim Rugova as "president" of a self-declared Republic of Kosovo; however these elections were not recognised by Serbian nor any foreign government. In 1995, thousands of Serb refugees from Croatia settled in Kosovo, which further worsened relations between the two communities.
Albanian opposition to sovereignty of Yugoslavia and especially Serbia had surfaced in rioting (1968 and March 1981) in the capital Priština. Ibrahim Rugova advocated non-violent resistance, but later when it became apparent that this was not working, opposition took the form of separatist agitation by opposition political groups and armed action from 1996 by the "Kosovo Liberation Army" (Ushtria Çlirimtare e Kosovës, or UÇK).
War and its aftermath

See the article Kosovo War for a fuller treatment.
The KLA launched a low-intensity guerrilla war characterised by regular bomb and gun attacks on Serbian security forces, state officials and civilians accused of "collaborating" with the Serbian government. In March 1998 Yugoslav army units joined Serbian police to fight the separatists, using military force on a large scale. In the months that followed, hundreds of people were killed and more than 200,000 fled their homes; most of these people were Albanians. Many Albanian families were forced to flee their homes at gunpoint, as a result of fighting between Serbian and KLA forces and also as the result of expulsions instigated by the security forces and associated paramilitary militias. There was violence against ethnic Serbs as well: UNHCR reported (March 1999) that over 90 mixed villages in Kosovo "have now been emptied of Serb inhabitants" and other Serbs continue leaving, either to be displaced in other parts of Kosovo or fleeing into central Serbia. The Yugoslav Red Cross estimated there were more than 30,000 non-Albanian displaced in need of assistance in Kosovo, most of whom are Serb. [6]
A full-scale war broke out on March 24, 1999 following the breakdown of negotiations between Serbian and Albanian representatives. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) intervened, heavily bombing Yugoslav civil targets (like bridges in Novi Sad). Simultaneously, Albanian fighters continued to attack Serbian forces and Kosovo Serb civilians, and Serbian/Yugoslav forces continued to fight Albanian rebels amidst a massive displacement of the population of Kosovo, which most human rights groups and international organisations regarded as an act of ethnic cleansing perpetrated by the government forces. A number of senior Yugoslav government officials and military officers, including President Milošević, were subsequently indicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) for war crimes for which they were allegedly responsible during the war.
The United Nations estimated that during the Kosovo War, nearly 640,000 Albanians fled or were expelled from Kosovo between March 1998 and the end of April 1999. Most of the refugees went to Albania, the Republic of Macedonia, or Montenegro. Government security forces confiscated and destroyed the documents and licence plates of many fleeing Albanians in what was widely regarded as an attempt to erase the identities of the refugees, the term "identity cleansing" being coined to denote this action. This made it difficult to distinguish with certainty the identity of returning refugees after the war. Serbian sources claim that many Albanians from Macedonia and Albania - perhaps as many as 300,000, by some estimates - have since migrated to Kosovo in the guise of refugees. The entire issue may be moot, however, due to the survival of birth and death records.

Kosovo Refugees in Kukes, Albania (1999)
Kosovo from June 10, 1999

The war ended on June 10, 1999 with the Serbian and Yugoslav governments signing the Kumanovo agreement which agreed to transfer governance of the province to the United Nations. A NATO-led Kosovo Force (KFOR) entered the province following the Kosovo War, tasked with providing security to the UN Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK). Before and during the handover of power, an estimated 300,000 Serbs and other non-Albanians, mostly Romas, fled the province for fear of reprisals. In the case of the non-Albanians, the Roma in particular were regarded by many Albanians as having assisted the Serbs during the war. Many left along with the withdrawing Serbian security forces, expressing fears that they would be targeted by returning Albanian refugees and KLA fighters who blamed them for wartime acts of violence. Thousands more were driven out by intimidation, revenge attacks and a wave of crime after the war as KFOR struggled to restore order in the province.
Large numbers of refugees from Kosovo still live in temporary camps and shelters in Serbia proper. In 2002, Serbia and Montenegro reported hosting 277,000 internally displaced people (the vast majority being Serbs and Roma from Kosovo), which included 201,641 persons displaced from Kosovo into Serbia proper, 29,451 displaced from Kosovo into Montenegro, and about 46,000 displaced within Kosovo itself, including 16,000 returning refugees unable to inhabit their original homes. [7][8] Some sources put the figure far lower; the European Stability Initiative estimates the number of displaced people as being only 65,000, with another 128,000 Serbs remaining in Kosovo. The largest concentration is in the north of the province above the Ibar river, but an estimated two-thirds of the Serbian population in Kosovo continues to live in the Albanian-dominated south of the province. [9]
In March 17, 2004, serious unrest in Kosovo led to several deaths, and the destruction of a large number of Orthodox churches and monastries in the province, as Albanians clashed with Serbs. Several thousand more Kosovo Serbs were reported to have left their homes to seek refuge in Serbia proper or in the Serb-dominated north of Kosovo proper.

At 1:26 AM, Anonymous said...

Demographic history of Kosovo

15th century
1455: Turkish cadastral tax census (defter)[1] of the Brankovic dynasty lands (covering 80% of present-day Kosovo and Metohija) recorded 480 villages, 13,693 adult males, 12,985 dwellings, 14,087 household heads (480 widows and 13,607 adult males). By ethnicity:
12,985 Serbian dwellings present in all 480 villages and towns
75 Vlach dwellings in 34 villages
46 Albanian dwellings in 23 villages
17 Bulgarian dwellings in 10 villages
5 Greek dwellings in Lauša, Vučitrn
1 Jewish dwelling in Vučitrn
1 Croat dwelling
17th-18th century
The Great Turkish War of 1683-1699 between the Ottomans and the Habsburgs led to the flight of a substantial part of Kosovo's Serbian population to Austrian held Vojvodina and the Military Frontier. Following this an influx of Muslim Albanian[2] from the highlands (Malesi) occurred, mostly into Metohija. The process continued in 18th century[3].
19th century
19th century data about the population of Kosovo tend to be rather conflicting, giving sometimes numerical superiority to the Serbs and sometimes to the Albanians. Many historians regard Ottoman statistics as being unreliable, as the empire counted its citizens by religion rather than nationality, using birth records rather than surveys of individuals.
A study in 1838 by an Austrian physician, dr. Joseph Müller found Metohija to be mostly Slavic (Serbian) in character.[4] Müller gives data for the three counties (Bezirke) of Prizren, Pec and Djakovica which roughly covered Metohija, the portion adjacent to Albania and most affected by Albanian settlers. Out of 195,000 inhabitants in Metohija, Müller found:
73,572 Orthodox Serbs 38%
5,120 Catholic Albanians 3%
2,308 other non-Muslims (Vlachs etc.)
114,000 Muslims (58%), of which:
c. 38,000 are Serbs (19%)
c. 76,000 are Albanians (39%)
Müller's observations on towns:
Peć: 11.050 Serbs, 500 Albanians
Prizren: 16,800 Serbs, 6150 Albanians
Đakovica: majority of Albanians, surrounding villages Serbian
Map published by French ethnographer G. Lejean[5] in 1861 shows that Albanians lived on around 57% of the territory of today's province while a similar map, published by British travellers G. M. Mackenzie and A. P. Irby[6] in 1867 shows slightly less; these maps don't show which population was larger overall.
A study done in 1871 by Austrian colonel Peter Kukulj[7] for the internal use of the Austro-Hungarian army showed that the mutesarifluk of Prizren (corresponding largely to present-day Kosovo and Metohija) had some 500,000 inhabitants, of which:
318.000 Serbs (64%),
161.000 Albanians (32%),
10.000 Roma (Gypsies) and Circassians,
2.000 Turks
Miloš S. Milojević travelled the region in 1871-1877 and left accounts which testify that Serbs were majority population, and were predominant in all cities, while Albanians were minority and lived mostly in villages[8]. According to his data, Albanians were majority population in southern Drenica (Muslim Albanians), and in region around Djakovica (Catholic Albanians), while the city was majorly Serbian. He also recorded several settlements of Turks, Roma and Circassians.
It is estimated that some 400,000[9] Serbs were cleansed out of the Vilayet of Kosovo between 1876 and 1912, especially during the Greek-Turkish war of 1897.
Maps published by German historian Kiepert[10] in 1876, J. Hahn[11] and Austrian consul K. Sax[12], show that Albanians live on most of the territory of today's province, however they don't show which population is larger. According to these, the regions of Kosovska Mitrovica and Kosovo Polje were settled mostly by Serbs, whereas most of the terrirory of western and eastern parts of today's province was settled by Muslim Albanians.
An Austrian statistics[13] published in 1899 estimated:
182,650 Albanians (47.88%)
166,700 Serbs (43.70%)
Remaining 8.42% Tsintsars, Turks, Circassians, Roma and Jews
20th century
British journalist H. Brailsford estimated[14] that two-thirds of the population of Kosovo was Albanian and one-third Serbian. The most populous western districts of Djakovica and Pec were said to have between 20,000 and 25,000 Albanian households, as against some 5,000 Serbian ones. Map of Alfred Stead[15], published in 1909, shows that similar numbers of Serbs and Albanians were living in the territory.
German scholar Gustav Weigand gave the following statistical data about the population of Kosovo in Ethnography of Macedonia (1924, written 1919), based on the pre-war situation in Kosovo in 1912:
Pristina District: 67% Albanians, 30% Serbs
Prizren District: 63% Albanians, 36% Serbs
Vucitrn District: 90% Albanians, 10% Serbs
Ferizovic (Urosevac) District: 70% Albanians, 30% Serbs
Gilani (Gnjilane) District: 75% Albanians, 23% Serbs
Mitrovica District: 40% Albanians, 60% Serbs
Metohija with the town of Djakovica is furthermore defined as almost exclusively Albanian by Weigand.
Serbia and Yugoslavia

Balkan Wars and World War I-World War II
Retaking of Kosovo by Serbia in 1912 resulting in suppression of the local Albanian population and ethnic cleansning of some regions[16].
1921 439,010 total inhabitants[17]
A map of the Serbian census of 1921[18] shows that most of the terrirory was settled by Albanians, with Serbian enclaves around Prizren, Sredska Zupa and Pristina. Religion on the largest part of the territory was Islam with Eastern Orthodox enclaves around Kosovska Mitrovica, Pristina and Gnjilane[19].
1931 552,064 total inhabitants[20]
World War II-1968
Most of the teritorry of today's province is occupied by Italian-occupied Greater Albania, massacres of some 10,000[21] Serbs, ethnic cleansing of about 80[22]-100,000[23][24] and settling of 100,000[25] of Albanians from Albania.
1948: 727,820 total inhabitants[26]; 498,242 Albanians or 68.46%[27]
1953: 524,559 Albanians or 65%[28]
1961: 646,604 Albanians or 67.1%[29]
1968-1989: Autonomy
After the province gained autonomy, local provincial Statistical office given authority over census whereas the rest of the country's census was under the tutelage of the Federal Statistical Commission. Allegations of census rigging (for the 1971 and 1981) by Turk, Muslim and Roma minorities who claim forceful Albanization. Serb claims Albanians drastically overincreased their own numbers. Nothing could be substantiated though because the Kosovo Statistical offices were under exclusive Albanian control which was against the national norm at the time which dicated that census takers had to be of different nationalities (i.e. one Albanian and one Serb not both Albanian as was the case in the two following censa).
1971: 1,243,693 total inhabitants[30]
916,168 Albanians or 73.7%[31]
259,816 Serbs/Montengrins or 20.9%[32]
26,000 Muslims or 2.1%
14,593 Roma or 1.2%
12,244 Turks or 1.0%
8,000 Croats or 0.7%
Albanians take ever-increasing control of Autonomous province with the introduction of the 1974 Constitution of SFRY.
1,584,440 total inhabitants
1,226,736 Albanians 77.42%
236,525 Serbs/Montenegrins 14.93%[33][34]
1989-1999: Centralized Yugoslav Control
Yugoslav Central Government reasserts control over Kosovo in 1989.
Official Yugoslav statistical results, almost all Albanians and some Roma, Muslims boyott the census following a call by Ibrahim Rugova to boycott Serbian institutions. 1991 359,346 Total population
214,555 Orthodox Serbs (194,190 Serbians and 20,365 Montenegrins)
9,091 Albanians (most boycotted)
57,758 (Slavic) Muslims
44,307 Roma
10,445 Turks
8,062 Croats (Janjevci, Letnicani)
3,457 Yugoslavs
Official Yugoslav statistical corrections and projections, with the help of previous census results (1948-1981):
1,956,196 Total population[35] (corrected from 359,346)
214,555 Orthodox Serbs (194,190 Serbians and 20,365 Montenegrins)
1,596,072 or 81,6 % Albanians (corrected from 9,091)
66,189 (Slavic) Muslims (corrected from 57,758)
45,745 Roma (corrected from 44,307)
10,445 Turks
8,062 Croats (Janjevci, Letnicani)
3,457 Yugoslavs
The corrections should not taken to be fully accurate. The number of Albanians is sometimes regarded as being an underestimate. On the other hand, it is sometimes regarded as an overestimate, being derived from earlier censa which are believed to be overestimates. The Statistical Office of Kosovo states that the quality of the 1991 census is "questionable." [36].
1999-present: UN administration
During the Kosovo War in 1999, over 700,000 ethnic Albanians[37] and around 100,000 ethnic Serbs were forced out of the province to neighbouring Albania, Macedonia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Serbia. After the United Nations took over administration of Kosovo following the war, the vast majority of the Albanian refugees returned.
Many non-Albanians - chiefly Serbs and Roma - fled or were expelled, mostly to the rest of Serbia at the end of the war, with further refugee outflows occurring as the result of sporadic ethnic violence. The number of registered refugees is around 250,000[38][39][40]. The non-Albanian population in Kosovo is now about half of its pre-war total. The largest concentration of Serbs in the province is in the north, but many remain in Kosovo Serb enclaves surrounded by Albanian-populated areas.
Various, mostly Serbian, sources claim that a large number of Albanians (usually stated as being around 200,000) have moved into Kosovo since 1999, due to the complete liberalization of the Kosovo-Albania border. The veracity of this claim is unclear; the Statistical Office of Kosovo states that "there are at present no reliable statistics on migration in Kosovo."
2000 Living Standard Measurement Survey by Statistical Office of Kosovo (rejected by Belgrade[41]). Total population estimated at 1 900 000 est.[42]
88% Albanians (1,733,600)
7% Serbs (137,900)
3% Muslim Slavs (59,100)
2% Roma (39,400)
1% Turks (19,700)
The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) estimates the population at 2.0 to 2.2 million people, extrapolating from voter registration data recorded by the UNMIK Department of Local Administration in 2000. [43]
Some estimates by Albanian demographers estimate a population of 2.4 million Albanians living in Kosovo today. This is regarded by most independent observers as an overestimate as it would imply a total population of some 2.5-2.6 million people in Kosovo, much higher than other estimates.