Monthly Archives: July 2013

El Salvador recognized Kosovo’s Indpendence now; I did it five years ago, when I met a proud Kosovo woman

A few weeks ago, El Salvador recognized the independence and sovereignty of Kosovo, raising the number of United Nations’ member states who have recognized the independence of the new-born Balkan country to 101. As a citizen of El Salvador, I had recognized Kosovo a long time ago, when I made friends with a proud Kosovo woman at United World College in Costa Rica. 

Written by: Fernando Tevez

Granting recognition symbolizes formally the beginning of a dialogue between states improving their trade, development assistance, collaboration, and diplomatic relations. Five years have passed since Kosovo’s self-proclaimed independence, yet only a little more than half the world’s countries have recognized it. Various countries, including Russia, continue to believe that the independence of Kosovo is illegal and refuse to recognize the sovereignty of the government in Pristina.

Kosovo is a small landlocked country in South-East Europe with a great ethnic and cultural diversity. Much to the dismay of its people, it is still mostly unknown in Latin America, where the recent recognition has brought up the questions of Kosovo’s identity and location. The recognition proceeds as a result of the recent visit of Bexhet Pacolli to the Republic of El Salvador, where the President Mauricio Funes has declared the country will begin it’s recognition process. The Government of El Salvador is still to issue a declaration, as the national parliament of El Salvador is yet to ratify what was declared in a note verbale by the Presidency of the country.

The recognition is promising: the new stability found in the financial and industrial markets in the Western Hemisphere is encouraging new trade ventures, and the association between Kosovo and El Salvador could translate into interesting business and cooperation opportunities. Relations until now have been amicable, but informal – Pacolli, for instance, attended the inauguration of President Funes in 2009.

I recognized the sovereignty of Kosovo in 2008, when I met my very esteemed friend and classmate Liza Gashi, while studying at the United World College in Costa Rica. Liza is a proud citizen of the new-born country and resident of Gjilan. She would always call to attention the challenges and opportunities experienced in Kosovo, while she always stressed the positive impact of self-determination.

Congratulations on your progress, Kosovo! I hope our two countries can establish positive cooperation and bilateral relations for better regions and a better world. I look forward to the day when Kosovo holds a seat in the UN General Assembly.

Fernando Tevez is studying International Relations and Political Science at Methodist University in North Carolina. He is a graduate of United World College of Costa Rica and is currently interning at Permanent Diplomatic Mission of El Salvador to the United Nations. 

The views expressed in this article are the author’s and do not necessarily reflect Kosovo Diaspora’s editorial policy.

Gazmend Freitag, The Artistic Marvel

Gazmend Freitag, a Kosovo-born artist in Austria, has become a renowned name associated to art throughout Europe in the past twenty years. His most recent exhibit, Der Kunstraum, is currently showcased in Vienna.

Gazmend Freitag, a Kosovo Albanian residing in Austria, has  demonstrated vast artistic abilities for all of Europe for the past twenty years. He was born on May 25, 1968 in Kosovo. He originally set out to become a lawyer. However, political changes in the region put a halt on his law degree, and he traveled to Germany in 1990.

He quickly picked up his old childhood passion of art. His main talent is in graphic works, consisting of oil canvas paintings, pencil, ink, mixed media works, and portraiture. He became famous for his themes of femininity and beautiful landscapes. Over the years, many well-known artists throughout Europe, as well as realist painters in America have influenced him. He is an active member of a group of European artists called Palette Oberösterreich.

Mr. Freitag attributes much of his success as a Kosovo Albanian living abroad to his ability to learn languages. “I have learned German really fast, which is the reason why I feel really good and immersed in the culture and societies in Germany and Austria,” he states. He believes that learning languages is the key to understanding different cultures, because it opens up a new horizon and allows for personal creativity in new settings.

In June 2013, Mr. Freitag opened a new exhibit in Vienna, Austria, titled Der Kunstraum, showcasing a large quantity of his work. To learn about the exhibit, please visit:

To learn more about Mr. Freitag, his artistic methods, and where to find his work, please visit: