Serbia Requests Explanation From Spain Over Recognition of Kosovo Passports


The Serbian authorities have asked Spain for clarifications regarding the latter’s move to recognise passports issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kosovo, as valid travel documents to enter the territory of Spain, reports.

According to the El Periodico, the Spanish authorities have sent a response to Serbia, which has satisfied the latter, however, none of the two sides have made any further comments, regarding this communication.

However, in an interview, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation of Spain, José Manuel Albares, has been asked regarding a statement of his of April 2023, when he said that Spain would not recognise the sovereignty of Kosovo, nor its passports.

My statement described a situation that was accurate at that time […] Seven months have passed since then, and Spain has to adapt just like the rest of the non-recognizing states. That’s why we started accepting Kosovar passports.

Minister of Foreign Affairs, José Manuel Albares

He has denied claims that this is the first step towards some type of formal recognition of Kosovo.

Albares also told El Periódico de España, that since Kosovo attends EU summits with the Western Balkan countries, Spain cannot pretend that it does not exist. Yet, it can continue denying its sovereignty like four other EU countries do – Slovakia, Cyprus, Greece, and Romania.

All four however, recognise Kosovo passports, as valid documents of travel, and have been issuing visas to the same for years now.

Albares’ latter comments follow criticism by the People’s Party of Spain on the move, who have asked the Minister for explanations if they has been pressured by the Catalan political party to undertake such a step.

On January 10, the spokesperson for the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Elena Aljarilla Cortezon, had told Radio Free Europe that Spain recognised Kosovo passports in a bid to avoid legal hurdles for citizens of Kosovo visiting Spain.

All Schengen countries that do not recognise Kosovo have accepted the use of regular Kosovo passports. This, in no way, implies recognition of Kosovo.

Elena Aljarilla Cortezon, spokesperson for the Spanish MFA

Besart Bajrami, founder of says that Spain had to recognise Kosovo passports since it did not have a way to control the Kosovo citizens entering its territory visa Portugal, with which it does not have border controls, as both countries are part of the Schengen Area.

Kosovo citizens started travelling visa-free to the Schengen Area member states, Spain aside, on January 1, 2024, after a years-long process towards this goal. Spain started accepting Kosovo-issued passports only days later, on January 6.


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