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Kosovo's Future in a Challenging Region: A Conversation with H.E. Vjosa Osmani, President of the Republic of Kosovo

November 8, 2021

On November 8, 2021, the Foreign Policy Institute (FPI) at Johns Hopkins SAIS hosted a conversation with Vjosa Osmani-Sadriu, the President of the Republic of Kosovo. Cinnamon Dornsife, executive director of FPI, and Edward Joseph, an FPI senior fellow, delivered remarks before Osmani-Sadriu opened the event by discussing her childhood living in Yugoslavia under then-President Slobodan Milosevic’s regime, challenges women encounter in politics, and Kosovo’s history. Regarding Kosovo, she described the nation as a success story and "a young country in an aging continent."

As the conversation progressed, Osmani-Sadriu outlined the threat she believes Serbia poses to her country and throughout the Balkans. "Serbia’s attempts to create a 'Greater Serbia' and to 'Bosnia-ize' Kosovo are the greatest threats in the region," explained Osmani-Sadriu. She also brought attention to Russia’s attempts to undo anything American in the region, through its support of Serbian Irredentism, and criticized Serbia’s failure to implement the Washington Consensus.

Osmani-Sadriu then transitioned to discussing her country’s relationship with the U.S. by noting how "Kosovo has aided American overseas military operations and formulated American-like vibrant, prosperous, and open institutions." She added she hopes to mimic Western models of fighting transnational corruption, strengthening transparency, and the rule of law. In closing remarks, she told students attending the event, "don’t choose the easiest way out if you don’t believe it is the best for your country."