As a result of fervent Serbian nationalism, a movement stoked by Yugoslavian president Slobodan Milosevic, all records of Albanian property and land ownership in Kosovo were either destroyed or removed, allowing Serb families to occupy houses and apartments owned by Albanians. In 1999, the tables turned. Following the NATO bombing of Kosovo and the return of thousands of Albanian refugees, Albanians quickly appropriated Serb homes and property.
Today, under the umbrella of the UN Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), UN-Habitat officials are wrestling with the daunting task of rebuilding municipal government in the region, establishing who truly owns which property in the process. It's a painstaking business, one that involves recreating official ownership records and organizing local government elections. In short, rebuilding democracy from the ground up.
This installment of LIFE assesses the success of UN efforts through the eyes and experiences of local families - both Serbian and Albanian - in Kosovo.
With the support of the UN Human Settlements Programme (UN Habitat); the European Commission Directorate General for Development to promote better understanding of development issues; the Directorate General for the Environment; and the Royal Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The other titles in this series are:
1. The Road from Rio - Questions the relevance and success of the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg.
2. Danger: Children at Work - Guatemalan agencies try to
discourage child labor and fireworks production by poor families.
3. The Trade Trap - Ghanaian farmers struggle to get a foothold in the international market.
5. The Perfect Famine - Examines the causes of, and solutions to, severe famine conditions in Malawi.
6. It Takes a Village - A cyclone in Bangladesh results in the construction of an experimental community health center.
7. Seeing is Believing - Zambia begins a nationwide program to deliver Vitamin A to its population.
8. Cheated of Childhood - The International Labor Organization tries to rescue and rehabilitate the street children of St. Petersburg.
9. Patents and Patients - India battles HIV/AIDS using generic drugs.
10. The Doctor's Story - The US debate over abortion has severe consequences for health care in rural Nepal.
11. Sowing Seeds of Hunger - The AIDS epidemic in sub-Saharan Africa has crippled the agricultural community while forcing children to undertake the responsibilities of farming.
12. Up in Smoke - Dependence on tobacco crops and manipulation by the tobacco industry has stunted the economy of Malawi.
Grade Level: 7-12, College, Adult
US Release Date: 2003
Copyright Date: 2002
DVD ISBN: 1-59458-120-7
VHS ISBN: 1-59458-003-0