Factbox: Kosovo

Following are key facts about Kosovo, whose future is the subject of UN-mediated talks that opened in Vienna on Monday.

    Officials have arrived for talks in Vienna

    Geography:

    Kosovo is a province of Serbia-Montenegro, encompassing 10,900sq km - about the size of Belgium - bordering Albania and Macedonia.

    The provincial capital is Pristina.

    Serbia-Montenegro, with its capital in Belgrade, is a union of the former republics of Serbia and Montenegro that replaced Yugoslavia when that country broke up in the early 1990s.
     

    People:

    About two million. Ninety per cent are ethnic Albanian; most of the remaining 10% are Serb.
     
    Status:

    Kosovo has been run by the UN and Nato since 1999, when Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic's forces were ousted after a Nato air war ended his crackdown on
    independence-seeking ethnic Albanians.

    Future:

    Ethnic Albanians, who say they are descendants of Kosovo's first inhabitants, want Kosovo to become an independent state. Serbs want the province to revert to tighter integration within the Serbia-Montenegro union.

    Serbs consider Kosovo the birthplace of their identity, as it was the scene of an epic battle between Serbs and Turks in 1389 CE.

    SOURCE: Unspecified


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