Political status of Kosovo
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The political status of Kosovo, also known as the Kosovo question, is the subject of a long-running political and territorial dispute between the Serbian (and previously, Yugoslav) government and the Government of Kosovo, stemming from the breakup of Yugoslavia (1991–92) and the ensuing Kosovo War (1998–99). In 1999, the administration of the province was handed on an interim basis to the United Nations under the terms of UNSCR 1244 which ended the Kosovo conflict of that year. That resolution reaffirmed the territorial integrity of Serbia over Kosovo but required the UN administration to promote the establishment of 'substantial autonomy and self-government' for Kosovo pending a 'final settlement' for negotiation between the parties.
The UN-sponsored talks began in February 2006, and though no agreement was reached between the parties, a proposal from UN Special Envoy Martti Ahtisaari was presented in May 2007 which recommended 'supervised independence' for the province. After many weeks of discussions at the UN in New York, the United States, United Kingdom and other European members of the United Nations Security Council formally 'discarded' a draft resolution backing Ahtisaari's proposal on 20 July 2007, having failed to secure Russian backing.[failed verification]
On 17 February 2008, representatives of the people of Kosovo, acting outside the UNMIK's PISG framework, issued a declaration of independence establishing the Republic of Kosovo. The International Court of Justice ruled that the declaration did not violate international law and argued that the signatory authors represented the broad will of the People of Kosovo, rather than the Assembly of Kosovo under the umbrella of UN resolution 1244.