NGO AKTIV and members of the OPEN platform presented today, July 1st, the findings of the “Kosovo Serb Community Census Outlook”, in the Civic Energy Center in North Mitrovica.
Presenting the findings of the research, the NGO Aktiv project manager Igor Markovic stated that the aim of the research is to explore the roles of Belgrade and Prishtinë/Priština in mobilizing the population to participate in the census, a possible boycott of the process, as well as expectations and fears resulting from the census and its results.
The panelists at this event, Aleksandar Rapajic from the Advocacy Center for Democratic Culture and Darko Dimitrijevic from Radio Gorazdevac, analyzed factors that could influence the decision of Kosovo Serbs regarding the upcoming population census.
The research “Kosovo Serb Community Census Outlook” showed that the vast majority of citizens of Serb nationality in Kosovo, 92%, have not been informed about the timing or means of holding the upcoming census in Kosovo.
Almost half of the respondents, 48%, stated that they will participate in the census, 35% of Serbs have not yet made up their minds, while 17% of them stated that they will not participate.
While the majority of Kosovo Serbs living south of the Ibar River, 74%, expressed a desire to take part, almost half of respondents from the north of Kosovo (48%) have not yet decided whether or not they will participate.
A plurality of respondents (44.4%) are of the opinion that Belgrade’s suggestion to not participate in the upcoming population census in Kosovo will not be a decisive factor.
“From the perspective of the Serbian community the census participation is influenced by a range of different factors, key among them include security situation, preservation of guaranteed rights and a need to establish a total number of Serbs living in Kosovo, and that there is no community-wide consent related to this topic”, the key findings showed.
Based on the conducted quantitative and qualitative research, it is recommended, among other things, the need to conduct a public information campaign about the population census in Serbian, determine the right of displaced persons to participate in the census process, the participation of Kosovo Serbs in census commissions, and an adequate translation of accompanying census material.
This publication was developed under the OPEN project, implemented by Kosovo Foundation for Open Society (KFOS) in cooperation with NGOs AKTIV and the Center for Rights of Minority Communities (CRMC). The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of KFOS.