Almost three decades after the dissolution of Yugoslavia, the conflict between Serbia and Kosovo continues to be a source of local tension and an issue in international politics. The dispute stems from Serbia’s refusal to recognize Kosovo as a country after Kosovo seceded from Serbia in 2008. The failure to resolve the dispute between Kosovo and Serbia has prevented both countries from joining the European Union (EU).
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As the Lawfare readership knows, the United States and its NATO allies relied on a series of factors in 1999 to argue that NATO’s intervention in Kosovo was legitimate. They used these factors to justify their intervention, though the factors served a second function of narrowing the ways in which others could use Kosovo as a precedent. But virtually no NATO state argued that the intervention was lawful, largely because the Charter does not legalize state uses of force in this context.
According to a statement issued today by the Russian Foreign Ministry (thanks to the OUP International Law Blog for flagging it), during the upcoming June 25, 2016 state visit of the Russian president to China, the "foreign ministers of both countries are planning to sign a declaration on increasing the role of international law." It will (according to Tass' report) set out a