Serbia History

Serbia History



Formation of the nation

The Serbs entered their present territory at the beginning of the 7th century, settling in six different tribal formations: Rascia / Raška, Bosnia, Neretva / Pagania, Zachumlie / Zahumlje, Trebounia / Travunija and Zeta.

The first Serbian state arose under Caslav Klonimirovic in the middle of the 10th century in Rascia. The first half of the 11th century saw the Vojislavljevic family rise up in Zeta. In the middle of the 12th century the rise of Rascia with the Nemanjic dynasty took place once again. The Nemanjics led Serbia into a golden age that produced a powerful state that was at its height during the rule of Tsar Stefan Dusan in the mid- 14th century. The Kingdom of Serbia was established in the 11th century, and in the 13th century it became the Serbian Empire. The invasion of the Ottoman Turks and the defeat of the Serbian armies and their allies in the Battle of Kosovo determined the end of their national independence and the dominance of the country by the Turks, a situation that remained without appreciable changes until the beginning of the 19th century.

Serbia gained autonomy from the Ottoman Empire in two uprisings in 1804 and 1815, although Turkish troops remained in the military garrison in the capital, Belgrade, until 1867. Serbia was a principality between 1817 and 1882, and a kingdom between 1882 and 1918, during which time internal politics revolved, in large part, around the dynastic rivalry of the Obrenovic and Karadordevic families.

The murder in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo – which the Austrians had annexed against Serbian interests – on June 28, 1914, of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Habsburg throne, by Gavrilo Princip, a young Bosnian Serb, he motivated the Austro-Hungarian ultimatum by demanding that Serbia allow him an investigation of the plot on Serbian soil. Despite Serbia’s acceptance (on July 25) of almost all the demands, the Austro-Hungarian Empire declared war on it on July 28. The mobilization of Russia In support of Serbia, on the other hand, he provoked a German ultimatum demanding the withdrawal of his forces, and the declaration of war between the great powers during the first week of August.


After the end of the First World War, several of the territories broken off from the Austro-Hungarian Empire were grouped under the Serbian crown. The resulting state became known in diplomatic parlance as the Kingdom of Croatian and Slovenian Serbs. In 1929 the name of the country was changed and from then on it would be known as Yugoslavia until the moment of its disintegration.

When the country was invaded by the Nazis during World War II, the resistance gathered around the supporters of the monarchy on the one hand and those of the Communists on the other. Meanwhile, some of the peoples of the kingdom, such as the Croats, collaborated with the fascists and became independent from Serbian centralism, protected by the German armies. Defeated the Germans, the military and political movement led by the leader of the communists Josep Broz Tito took total control of the country and prevented the reestablishment of the monarchy. The partisans reestablished the Yugoslav state, as a federation of six republics (Serbia, Croatia, Montenegro, Slovenia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Macedonia). The new government guided the country on a unique path that led it to live in a delicate balance as a non-aligned state, between the members of the Warsaw Pact and the NATO powers during the four decades after World War II.

Disintegration of Yugoslavia

In 1989, Slobodan Milosevic became president of the Republic of Serbia with a government program that had as its central axis the maintenance of the federation, in clear opposition to the secessionist intentions that were particularly strong in Slovenia and Croatia. In 1991 the republics of Croatia, Slovenia and Macedonia declared their independence from Yugoslavia, which was followed by Bosnia – Herzegovina in 1992. Serbia and Montenegro then declared a new Yugoslav Republic.

Some Serbian settlements were isolated within the borders of the new Croatian republic. Having become a national minority, the Serbs, armed as a militia, requested support from the federation’s army. His intervention in the conflict in Croatia, and the subsequent civil war in Bosnia, which the Croats and Muslims unilaterally split against the will of the Serbs who made up a third of the population, motivated the UN, under the aegis of the Western powers that singled out the Serbs as the sole perpetrators of war crimes – although these were committed by all sides in the conflict – excluded Serbia from the organization.

In 1997, Milosevic, who continued to have strong support within Serbia, was reelected President of the Republic. Yugoslavia was then subjected to a great campaign of discredit at the international level, as the Serbian army was accused of carrying out an ethnic cleansing in the province of Kosovo against the Albanian – Kosovars who were the majority of the population. The Western powers, for their part, began to provide logistical and financial support to members of the Kosovo Liberation Army (UCK), which sought the independence of the province and which the same Western intelligence services had identified as a terrorist group, linked to to drug, arms and white goods trafficking.

Faced with the Serbian refusal to withdraw its military forces from Kosovo, the NATO powers began Operation Allied Force: an indiscriminate bombing campaign against the civilian infrastructure of Yugoslavia with the aim of forcing its surrender. These bombings, which lasted more than 90 days, were carried out in violation of international law, without being covered by any United Nations resolution. Many claim that NATO deliberately committed war crimes during them. In June 1999, Serbian forces began to withdraw from Kosovo, which was occupied by NATO forces (KFOR) – which were intended to masquerade as blue helmets. – Actually under their protection the terrorist bands of the UCK, began the extermination and the methodical expulsion of Serbian civilians, to finally declare the independence of Kosovo, despite the fact that UN Resolution 1244 was very clear that Kosovo was a party inalienable of Serbia.

Republic of Serbia

In 2003, according to Topschoolsintheusa, Yugoslavia formally became the Republic of Serbia and Montenegro and returned to the United Nations. Three years later, in 2006, he held an independence referendum. The majority of citizens voted for Montenegro to declare itself an independent republic as of June 3, 2006. On June 5, the Serbian government declared that the Republic of Serbia was then the only successor to what was previously Serbia and Montenegro, preserving the rights and access to international organizations that as a whole, Serbia and Montenegro had achieved until then.

Serbia History