Kosovo says Spain recognizes its passports

Kosovo says Spain recognizes its passports

/ 03:52 PM January 07, 2024

Kosovo-Serbia conflict

People attend celebrations of the 11th anniversary of Kosovo independence in Pristina, Kosovo, February 17, 2019. REUTERS FILE PHOTO

PRISTINA — Spain has agreed to recognize passports from Kosovo, having previously been one of five EU states not to do so or to recognize the Balkan state, the latter’s Deputy Prime Minister Besnik Bislimi said Saturday.

“The good news continues for our citizens and our country,” Bislimi said in a post to Facebook.


“While visa-free movement started on January 1, Spain has now been added to the countries of the Schengen area where we can travel through liberalization, where previously the main obstacle was the non-recognition of our passport,” said Bislimi, who heads Kosovo’s EU dialogue team.


Foreign Minister Donika Gervalla-Schwarz posted on X, formerly Twitter, that “citizens of Kosovo can travel to Spain now … the Kingdom of Spain recognizes ordinary passports of the Republic of Kosovo as of Jan 1, 2024.”

Gervalla-Schwarz noted, however, that “this change does not constitute, by any means, an official recognition of Kosovo as an independent state” by Madrid.

Spain’s fellow EU members Slovakia, Cyprus, Romania, and Greece likewise do not recognize Kosovo, population 1.8 million, which declared independence from Serbia in 2008 and has been recognized by the bloc’s other 22 member states.

Madrid acted on passports after January 1 saw a long-awaited EU visa liberalization scheme allowing Kosovar nationals to travel to Europe’s borderless zone without a visa came into force on Monday.

The new regime enables Kosovars into the Schengen zone without a visa for periods of up to 90 days in any 180-day period.

The reform is perceived in Pristina as another step towards full recognition and a boost for its ambitions of joining the European Union.


Kosovo was the last of the six countries in the Western Balkans to receive the visa waiver.

Prior to that, Kosovar citizens had only been allowed to visit a total of 14 countries worldwide without a visa.

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More than 100 states have recognized Kosovar statehood to date, including the United States. But Serbian allies Russia and China notably have not.

TAGS: European Union, Kosovo, Passport, Spain, Travel

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