Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year

It has been a while since I here's a quick catch-up!  Plus Happy New Year!  This year will mark 11 years of being in Kosovo.  Many laugh at the notion but I truly do call Kosovo home.  Some have called me crazy after ranting about how bad it is in Kosovo when they find out just how long I have been here...but honestly, they have no idea what bad is in Kosovo.  I am glad to say "Kosovo, you've done good" in the incredible amount of progress I have seen since hitting the ground in July 2001.  Granted there is still a ways to go but I am thrilled that Kosovo has managed to rebuild and grow!

Kosovo, KFOR, and the Serbs continue their back and forth over the roadblocks in the North.  No real viable solution seems to be in sight despite Serbia telling the Kosovo Serbs to remove the barricades and their assurances that freedom of movement will be established. 

In mid-December, a Russian aid convoy captured headlines when it was stopped by EULEX customs officials when entering Kosovo.  EULEX said the convoy would either have to accept an escort, a move seen to get EULEX, KFOR, and Kosovo police past the still present Serb barricades, or pass through a Pristina controlled border point.  A few days later the convoy would be allowed to pass with an EULEX escort.

More than a year after losing his job due to corruption charges, the Director of Kosovo's Central Bank, Hashim Rexhepi, was cleared of all five charges levied against him by EULEX in what was widely criticized as a politically motivated case.