Kosovo Athletes To Take Part In Rio 2016 Olympics Under Kosovo Flag

Kosovo will be taking part in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games as an independent nation even though its independence is not recognized by the United Nations and is a controversial topic in Serbia.

Kosovo was earlier a part of Yugoslavia and the Balkan region of it contested in Olympic Games since the Middle Ages.

Very recently the Kosovo team has also made an entry into UEFA, the football governing body of Europe.

Kosovo was declared independence in 2008 after years of violence between Serbian government forces and ethnic-Albanian Kosovars since the country’s collapse during the 1990s.

Several countries including Russia objected the declaration, but nations like US, UK, Germany and France have welcomed the independence of Kosovo.

Serbia meanwhile protested Kosovo’s admission to the Olympics claiming the region to be their autonomous province.

Eight Kosovo athletes will be taking part in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games under the Kosovo flag and those will be runner Vijona Kryeziu, runner Musa Hajdari, two judoists, two swimmers, one cyclist and one shooter.

According to Kryeziu the new team will be making a good debut.

Hajdari said, “It is a big responsibility for us and we will try to go and give the maximum.”

It is reported the main medal hopes would be with judo star Majlinda Kelmendi as she had won a gold medalk earlier in 2016 at the European Judo Championships in Kazan, Russia. She is one of the favorites in the 52kg category at the Rio 2016 Olympics.