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Illiberal and authoritarian tendencies in Central, Southeastern and Eastern Europe

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Edited By Florian Bieber, Magdalena Solska and Dane Taleski

Even though the democratic decline has been deemed a global phenomenon, the question of how it manifests itself in the postcommunist world and how it varies across different regions with divergent levels of democratic consolidation has not been sufficiently addressed yet. This book tries to fill the gap and examines the causes and nature of the deteriorating quality of democracy in Central Europe as well as the reversal or stagnation of democratization processes in Southeastern and Eastern Europe. The political elite plays a key role in initiating legislative changes that may lead to democratic backsliding. Its constant commitment to the rule of law and to the practice of selfrestraint in securing the independence of judiciary and the rights of political opposition appears hence indispensable for sustainable liberal democracy.
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9. Illiberal Tendencies and the Aspirations for Euro-Atlantic Integration in Kosovo (Arben Hajrullahu / Lirije Palushi)

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Arben Hajrullahu and Lirije Palushi

9.  Illiberal Tendencies and the Aspirations for Euro-Atlantic Integration in Kosovo

This chapter analyses current illiberal and authoritarian trends and tendencies in Kosovo, where most of the recent governing structures are inherited from the international administration that was installed in 1999. One of the key challenges to an unobstructed functioning state based on rule of law as a precondition for more liberal and democratic governance appears to be the troublesome relationship with Serbia. The unresolved issues between Serbia and Kosovo pose one of the main obstacles towards more inclusion – one of the key characteristics of liberal regimes. In addition to this, the absence of a common EU position in relation to Kosovo’s independence and sovereignty makes it impossible to use the real prospect of participating in the EU integration process as a sustainable strategy for fostering more inclusive societies based on liberal values. The situation prevents meaningful and substantial democratization processes in the country whereas the focus of the political parties remains far from good governance practices. On the one hand the political parties, especially those in power, continue to be characterized by corruption, clientelism and practices of political patronage. On the other hand, the role of academia, civil society and media is uncertain as they are often vulnerable due to informal and political interference. All of this is accompanied by an overlap of responsibilities and, most importantly, the failure of the domestic and international institutions to...

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