Kosovo's Independence Day
Since moving to England I’ve settled into a new school and made friends. I’ve got used to living in a country where the electricity stays on all the time (in Kosovo, I kept a torch nearby in case the lights went out in another power cut!)and I feel safe here. But there is one day, 17th February, when I wish I could be in Kosovo again. 17th February is the day when Kosovo became independent from Serbia in 2008.
Not all countries recognise Kosovo’s independence. Some say it is not a real country. Kosovar-Albanians like my family still celebrate this day with a public holiday. People come out onto the streets of Pristina, Kosovo’s capital city, waving flags and there is a parade. I feel like it would be nice to be in the country where I was born on this special day, to be part of the dancing and singing; but this day also makes me feel confused. I’ll tell you why.
I know that this special day, when my family feels happy and celebrates, is the same day Kosovar-Serbs feel sad and angry. That’s because Kosovar-Serbs didn’t want Kosovo to become independent from Serbia. It’s a bit like some people in Northern Ireland who want to stay part of the UK and some people who want to become part of Ireland.
I wondered if it’s a good thing for some people to celebrate something that makes other people feel sad. What do you think?