The story

Fireworks lit the skies and crowds filled the streets of Kosovo's capital Sunday after the territory's parliament declared independence from Serbia, a move backed by many Western governments, but which Serbia and Russia bitterly oppose.

"The day has come," Prime Minister Hashim Thaci, a former separatist guerrilla leader, told his parliament. "From this day onwards, Kosovo is proud, independent and free."

The province has been under U.N. administration and patrolled by NATO troops since a 1999 bombing campaign that halted a Serb-led campaign against Kosovo's ethnic Albanian majority. Read full article »

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