Kosovo eyes recognition from the Muslim states

Kosovo eyes recognition from the Muslim states

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Kosovo eyes recognition from the Muslim states

President Abdullah Gül shakes hand with Kosovo Parliamentary Speaker Yakup Krasnici in Ankara in this file photo. AA photo

Kosovo expects to be recognized by the Muslim countries in Africa and Asia, including countries affected by the Arab Spring, Kosovo Parliamentary Speaker Yakup Krasnici told the Hürriyet Daily News in a recent interview.

Krasnici paid a visit to Turkey and held talks with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Parliamentary Speaker Cemil Çiçek last week.

Speaking to the Daily News, Krasnici said Turkey had been one of the countries giving the greatest support to Kosovo.

“We are holding talks in Muslim countries like Pakistan, Indonesia and Bangladesh, African countries and the countries that have been going through the Arab spring, as well as South American countries,” Krasnici said.

Kosovo, an impoverished land with a population of mainly ethnic Albanians, unilaterally declared independence from Serbia in February 2008. The territory immediately won recognition from the United States and major European Union countries. Krasnici said they also received a promise of visa exemption from the European Union within two years.

Krasnici said the relations between Kosovo and Serbia had not yet smoothed down because of the Serbian side’s resistance to building relations with Kosovo. “We want to improve our dialogue with Serbia with the help of the EU. However the foreign policy of Serbian politicians in Belgrade looks up to the other nations in the region.”

New opportunities

Krasnici also said there were big and new opportunities in Kosovo for Turkish businessmen, and they expected Turkey to make more investments in Kosovo.

“There are new opportunities that need to be used by Turkish businessmen. Kosovo is a rich country in terms of natural resources, for instance. And as a country which just recovered from war, Kosovo needs these kinds of investments in order to repair its damaged economy,” Krasnici said.