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Spain will recognise South Sudan’s independence, but not Kosovo's

If South Sudan citizens finally vote for independence, the Spanish Government will respect it and recognise their independence. However, the Spanish Minister for Foreign Affairs, Trinidad Jiménez, announced that Spain would not review its stance on Kosovo. The Balkan country declared its independence from Serbia in 2008 but Spain is one of the 5 EU Member States that still refuses to recognise it.

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11 January 2011 10:21 PM

by

ACN / Raquel Correa

Brussels (CNA).- The Spanish Government said it will recognise the new sovereign state of South Sudan if citizens vote for independence. However, according to the Spanish Foreign Affairs Minister Trinidad Jiménez, the Government has no intention on changing its stance on Kosovo. “With Kosovo there is a clear difference”, she said, “Kosovo’s was a unilateral independence declaration and Spain can keep its reserve on recognising it”. Kosovo declared its independence from Serbia in February 2008. Although the United States and the majority of EU Member States recognise Kosovo’s independence, Spain refuses to do so.


Since last Sunday, citizens in South Sudan have been voting in the independence referendum. The voting is a result of the 2005 peace agreement that put an end to the civil war between the North and South; a war that lasted more than 2 decades and cost the country more than 2 million lives. The agreement foresaw a general election that took place last April as well as a referendum for the self-determination of the people of Southern Sudan. The problem is the Sudanese government’s current attitude to not recognise South Sudan’s right to declare its independence from the North.

Jiménez defended the Spanish Government's stance as part of a “global peace agreement”. “It is a matter of international law”, she said. But with regards to Kosovo, Jiménez insists that Kosovo had no right to declare its independence from Serbia. According to the US, the EU and the majority of international governments, Kosovo is an independent state and has been since July 2010 as declared by the International Court of Justice.

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  • Two women showing photos of South Sudan leaders in front of a people waiting to vote (by Reuters)

  • The Spanish Foreign Affairs Minister, Trinidad Jiménez in Brussels (by R. Correa)

  • Two women showing photos of South Sudan leaders in front of a people waiting to vote (by Reuters)
  • The Spanish Foreign Affairs Minister, Trinidad Jiménez in Brussels (by R. Correa)