17 Nov 10

Poll Reveals Support for 'Greater Albania'

New survey shows that most Albanians in the Balkans dream of being united into one state, though few expect this to happen any time soon.

Besar Likmeta
Tirana

The poll, conducted by Gallup in cooperation with the European Fund for the Balkans, showed that 62 per cent of respondents in Albania, 81 per cent in Kosovo and 51.9 per cent of respondents in Macedonia supported the formation of a Greater Albania.

The vast majority of respondents, over 95 per cent overall in the three countries, said that if such a Greater Albania was created, it should include Albania, Kosovo and part of Macedonia.

Support is much lower for the union only of Albania and Kosovo. Only 33.7 per cent of respondents in Albania approved of this solution, as did 29.2 per cent in Kosovo and a mere 7.2 per cent in Macedonia.

Most respondents said they doubted that the unification of all ethnic Albanians in the region would happen any time soon.

A century of shifting borders has left ethnic Albanians scattered across Kosovo, Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia and Greece.

Although the idea of uniting Albanians into a single state continues to be popular, Albanian political leaders in the region are wary of raising the issue of border changes.

They tend to maintain that as the region integrates in the European Union, Albanians will be united in a European space without borders or national barriers.

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