SPEECH OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF KOSOVO, MADAM ATIFETE JAHJAGA ON THE 5th ANNIVERSARY OF THE INDEPENDENCE OF THE REPUBLIC OF KOSOVO

On this fifth anniversary of independence, we stand united, determined and proud, unwavered and committed to Kosovo, for this place for which many generations have sacrificed, for our homeland now a consolidated state that has taken its deserved place among the free nations, an inseparable part of the democratic world.

Distinguished Speaker of the Kosovo Assembly, Mr. Krasniqi
Distinguished Mr. Prime Minister Thaci,
Distinguished President of the Republic of Albania, Mr. Nishani
Distinguished ministers and leaders of the institutions of the Republic of Kosovo,
Distinguished Defense Minister of the Republic of Macedonia, Mr. Besimi
Distinguished Ambassadors and representatives of diplomatic missions in Kosovo,
Distinguished families of martyrs and activists that contributed for an independent Kosovo,
Leaders of political parties in Kosovo and the region,
Honorable participants,
Honorable citizens of the Republic of Kosovo,

Ladies and Gentlemen:

On this fifth anniversary of independence, we stand united, determined and proud, unwavered and committed to Kosovo, for this place for which many generations have sacrificed, for our homeland now a consolidated state that has taken its deserved place among the free nations, an inseparable part of the democratic world.

Five years ago, grasping flags we flooded the streets, rejoiced and hopeful for the future of which we were o becoming our own masters for the first time. It was a day for which we dreamt for a long time. A day for which us, and many others before us, had dedicated our whole lives. Today we remember that courageous step, this noble decision and the foundations of this steady and visionary project, to which we, the citizens of Kosovo and its institutions, stand loyal.

Five years ago, we took an oath that we will make Kosovo a country of great opportunities, where all the people, regardless of their ethnic, religious and gender background would enjoy equal rights, would lead a respectful and dignified life, determined to become part of the united Europe.

On February 17, 2008 with the act of the declaration of Independence we proved that we are on the right side of history, that the Balkan turmoil may have delayed us, but it has not derailed us from our path.

On this journey we were not alone. By us stood the United States of America, our permanent ally and friend, Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy, countries of the European Union, which supported our efforts to become masters of our own fate.

As a young country we have much to show – a joint success story with the international community, a state that is laying the democratic foundation while successfully addressing the problems of transition.

Distinguished participants,
Dear fellow citizens,

Our journey to make Kosovo what we promised goes on.

Without wasting time and determined, we are building the just state, we will establish law and order, in every corner of Kosovo. We will uproot corruption and organized crime.

Our sustainability as a state, our progress as a society and our aspirations to make Kosovo a member of the European Union depend on our determination in this battle, which we will win. We have no other alternative. We stand united on this.

We will develop our economy and create a sound business climate, a market competition and generation of new jobs that will secure a dignified life for every citizen of Kosovo.

We will surpass the cleavages with our political unity to deepen the democratic reforms in every sphere. We will strengthen our internal stability, which will continue to reflect in our external consolidation through membership in international organizations and mechanisms, making Kosovo an undeniable fact.

We have defeated all the dilemmas about our sustainability as a state. With much seriousness we have understood our responsibilities and we have met them with determination, convincing, among other things, the international community to bring to completion the international supervision of independence.

These successes are a result of the tireless work of the citizens of Kosovo, of the patriotism, of their endless love for Kosovo, their solidarity with one another, their dedication to democratic values that constitute the foundations upon which we are building our state, our common homeland.

We have stood by our vision and the sacrifice of our successors in front of every challenge. We did not lose perspective and we did not waver in our path even as we stood among the ruins of the war as we projected the Kosovo of the future, integrated into EU and NATO.

This oath that we have made five years ago is valid for each and every one of us.

The Republic of Kosovo is an undeniable reality.  Independence is an irreversible process. The expressed will of its citizens. A territorial wholeness, undivided and internationally guaranteed. The Republic of Kosovo is a country of all of those that live within its borders, regardless of their background.

Our dedication for Kosovo a home to all of its citizens, a factor of peace and stability in the region, is now a realized vision.

Citizens of the Republic of Kosovo,
Distinguished guests,

We have won the right to be proud with what we represent and what we have achieved so far. We have a long way ahead of us, and maybe a difficult one as well.

But our presence here tonight is a reminder to all of those that doubted us; to all of those to whom our occasional shortcomings presented an opportunity to doubt our determination.

This anniversary and our joint success thus far are the best evidence that we do not surrender to challenges, but just like in the past, we succeeding in facing the numerous difficulties because we are convinced in our just mission.

Kosovo and its own citizens have a bright future ahead of them. In our journey toward the fulfillment of the aspirations for integration into the European Union we will be inspired by the values that brought us here.

Kosovo, happy fifth anniversary of independence!
God bless Kosovo and its friends!