Comment 30 Aug 17

Why Kosovo’s Serbs Cannot Become Political Kingmakers

The Kosovo Serbs ought to have real leverage in the country – but for a variety of reasons, they are not realising this potential.

Krenar Gashi
BIRN
Gent
Slavko Simic, leader of the Serbian List. Photo: Medija Centar

In my comment earlier this month, Fixing What’s Wrong with Kosovo Politics, I argued that Kosovo’s political crisis is a combination of a local power struggle and inadequate international intervention, while I highlighted the informal power structures of political parties as the country’s single largest political problem.

What I left out of the analysis was the Kosovo Serbs. Today, I argue that the Serbs cannot be real kingmakers in Kosovo as long as their political representatives lack legitimacy – and while the community remains incapable of projecting its own interests.

The role of the Serbs in Kosovo politics is formally important but functionally trivial.

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