Balkan Institute

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Chapter closed in Balkans Conference

In cooperation with the International Civilian Office (ICO) and Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kosovo, Balkan Institute hosted the Chapter Closed in Balkans conference, on September 12th 2012. This conference marked the end of Kosovo’s supervised independence, the formal closing of the ICO, and the point where Kosovo was granted full sovereignty. The conference offered an opportunity to take stock of lessons learnt from the international involvement in the country and to map out visions for the future of the region in the decade ahead. Prominent speakers and participants in the conference included former Finnish President and Noble Peace Prize Winner Marti Athisaari, EU Special Representative and International Civilian Representative Pieter Feith, Samuel Zbogar, Head of EU in Kosovo, Journalist and Author Tim Juddah, Dimitar Bechev from the Council on Foreign Relations, President of Kosovo Atifete Jahjaga, Kosovo’s Prime Minister Hashim Thaci, Kosovo’s Minister Ever Hoxhaj and Deputy Foreign Minister Petrit Selimi.

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Faith and Reconciliation - What is the Future of Interfaith Dialogue?

Balkan Institute, The Tony Blair Faith Foundation, and the Soul of Europe organized an International Interfaith Conference on 'Faith and Reconciliation - What is the Future of Interfaith Dialogue?' The conference was held in May of 2013 in Peja, Kosovo and brought together hundreds of religious leaders from around the World. For more information on participants, as well as the conference in general, see:

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Religion and Foreign Policy

In August of 2013, BI was the Implementing Partner of a program sponsored by Kosovo’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Tony Blair Faith Foundation on “Religion and Foreign Policy: the Role of Religion in Conflict and Post-conflict Societies.” The course brought together thirty students from over fifteen countries including the United States, China, Morocco, Australia, the United Kingdom, Singapore, Kosovo, and the Ukraine. Courses held in Prishtina, Kosovo, were taught by world-renowned scholars, diplomats, and faith leaders. Lecturers included Dr. Ivo Banac from the University of Zagreb and Yale, Dr. Miroslav Volf from Yale, Dr. Obrad Savic, who taught at the University of Belgrade, and Pakistani Ambassador Zamir Akram who served as Chair of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. Guest speakers included Kosovo Foreign Minister Enver Hoxhaj, Deputy Foreign Minister Petrit Selimi, Israeli Ambassador Daniel Taub, Father Sava Janjic of the Serbian Orthodox Church and Antti Pentikäinen of Finn Church Aid. Student trips included Prizren, Recak, and Decan. For further information see: