Co-opting the Liberal Peace: Untying the Gordian Knot in Kosovo<sup>1</sup>

Oliver P. Richmond and Jason Franks

in Liberal Peace Transitions

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print September 2009 | ISBN: 9780748638765
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748652761 | DOI:
Co-opting the Liberal Peace: Untying the Gordian Knot in Kosovo1

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This chapter examines how the liberal project, even on the scale and depth employed by the international governance of Kosovo, is susceptible to local co-option, particularly where one group can adopt the language of the liberal peace and has strong support from, and credibility in the eyes of, the international community. This has led to a focus on achieving statehood for Kosovan Albanians, the marginalization of other identity groups and their agendas (most vocally Kosovo's Serbs), and consequently the undermining of the pluralist goals of peacebuilding with the implicit cooperation of liberal peacebuilders. Given Serb opposition to statehood for Kosovo, there is a danger that liberal peacebuilding has encouraged the partition of Kosovo rather than created a pluralist polity, as it has already contributed to the emergence of a highly contested declaration of independence.

Keywords: international governance; Kosovo; liberal peace; Kosovan Albanians; pluralism; peacebuilding

Chapter.  13447 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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