The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has granted provisional recognition to Kosovo’s National Olympic Committee (NOC).
The Executive Board of the IOC, meeting Wednesday in Montreux, Switzerland, also proposed that the Kosovo NOC be granted full recognition at the next IOC Session, scheduled for December in Monaco.
The IOC made the decision in the interests of Kosovo athletes and to remove any uncertainty about their participation in the qualifiers for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio and in future games, according to a press release from IOC.
Kosovo’s NOC was established in 1992 and has more than 30 affiliated National Federations, 13 of which are Olympic sports federations.
Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in February 2008 and it is recognized by 110 countries.
Belgrade has refused to recognize its former province, which has a majority Albanian population, as an independent state, regarding it as a heartland of the Serbian nation.
(Photo of Kosovo flag by Quinn Dombrowski/flickr.com)