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Survey Shows Low Support For Land Swap Deal With Serbia among Kosovo Albanians

Survey Shows Low Support For Land Swap Deal With Serbia among Kosovo Albanians

In January 2020, 30 percent of Kosovo Albanians supported border adjustment between Kosovo and Serbia in return for global recognition of Kosovo and open the path for UN membership, a survey has found. The level of support was higher among Kosovo Serbs, at 40 percent.

Volume III of the “Vox Populi on the ‘Grand Finale’ between Kosovo and Serbia” survey was recently published by Kosovo’s Research Institute of Development and European Affairs (RIDEA).

It follows two previous surveys in December 2018 and May 2019, and it reflects people’s perceptions between 20-24 January 2020.

A total of 1107 respondents participated (90% Albanians, 8% Serbs, and 2% from other ethnic groups).

The survey was completed in March, but RIDEA said it could not present it to audiences until today due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Following are some of the main findings of the survey:

— Kosovo-Serbia dialogue

Overall, 70% of respondents support the restart of dialogue. Serbian respondents were somewhat less enthusiastic than the Albanians.

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— Kosovo-Albania unification

Overall, 37% support the idea that Kosovo should seek unification with Albania if Kosovo is recognized from Serbia and 54% reject the idea.

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— Kosovo-Serbia Deal

First scenario– the status quo–only 12% of respondents were satisfied with the current status quo between Kosovo and Serbia. However, there were substantial differences between the Albanian and Serbian samples, with 90% among Albanians compared with 43% among Serbs who were dissatisfied with the current status quo.

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Second scenario– granting executive powers for the Kosovo Serb Association/community’ provided that in return, Serbia provides de facto recognition to Kosovo – only 15% of respondents supported this scenario. There was weak support among Kosovo Albanians (11%), but significantly more support among Serbs (53%).

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Third scenario– border adjustment between Kosovo and Serbia in return for global recognition of Kosovo and open the path for UN membership– 30% of the total sample expressed support for this scenario, the level of support rising to 40% among the Serbian sample. 

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The idea of seeking unification of Kosovo with Albania has become slightly less popular compared to previous RIDEA surveys.

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Support for land swap deal has remain virtually unchanged until January 2020 in the RIDEA surveys.

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Since the last survey in January, Kosovo has gone through some important political developments, and it’s not clear to what extent the results of this survey would still hold.

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