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Yugoslavia describes three political entities that existed one at a time on the Balkan Peninsula in Europe, during most of the twentieth century.

The Kingdom of Yugoslavia ( December 1, 1918,-April 17, 1941), also known as the First Yugoslavia, was a monarchy formed as the "Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes" after World War I and re-named on January 6, 1929, by Alexander I of Yugoslavia. It was invaded on April 6, 1941, by the Axis powers and capitulated 11 days later.

The Second Yugoslavia (November 29, 1943,-June 25, 1991), a socialist successor state to the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, existed under various names, including the "Democratic Federation of Yugoslavia (DFY)" (1943), the "Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia (FPRY)" (1946), and the "Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY)" (1963). It disintegrated in the Yugoslav Wars, which followed the secession of most of the constituent elements of SFRY.

The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) (April 27, 1992,-February 4, 2003), was a federation on the territory of the two remaining republics of Serbia (including the autonomous provinces of Vojvodina and Kosovo and Metohija) and Montenegro.

The Union of Serbia and Montenegro was formed on February 4, 2003, and officially abolished the name "Yugoslavia." On June 3 and June 5, 2006, Montenegro and Serbia respectively declared their independence, thereby ending the last remnants of the former Yugoslav federation.

The region once occupied by Yugoslavia is often described as "the crossroads between East and West." This position is considered one of the reasons for its turbulent history.

Geography

Yugoslavia, with a land area of 98,610 square miles (255,400 square kilometers), in 1990 was slightly larger than Wyoming in the United States. The area controlled the most important land routes from central and western Europe to Aegean Sea and Turkish straits. The nation shared borders with Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Italy, and Romania.

The territory's terrain is extremely varied, with rich fertile plains to the north, limestone ranges and basins to the east, ancient mountains and hills to the southeast, and extremely high shoreline with no islands off the coast to the southwest. The highest point is Daravica at 8713 feet (2656 meters).

Natural resources include coal, copper, bauxite, timber, iron ore, antimony, chromium, lead, zinc, asbestos, mercury, crude oil, natural gas, nickel, and uranium. Twenty eight percent of the land is considered arable.

Background

Did you know?The region once occupied by Yugoslavia is often described as "the crossroads between East and West"

The area that became Yugoslavia has been the location of pre-human and human habitation for 100,000 years. The remnants of a Neanderthal, subsequently named Homo krapiniensis, were discovered on a hill near the town of Krapina, in Croatia. The Balkans were home to the iron-working Illyrians, who settled through the western Balkans by the seventh century B.C.E., and iron-skilled Celts began to settle the area from 300 B.C.E. Romans began to move into the Balkan Peninsula in the late third century B.C.E., conquered Illyria in 168 B.C.E., and organized the land into the Roman province of Illyricum.

The first idea of a state for all South Slavs emerged in the late seventeenth century, a product of visionary thinking of Croat writers and philosophers who believed that the only way for southern Slavs to regain lost freedom after centuries of occupation under the various empires would be to unite and free themselves of tyrannies and dictatorships. They named it the Illyrian Movement and gathered many prominent Croatian intellectuals and politicians around the new idea, but the movement started gaining large momentum only at the end of the nineteenth century, mainly because of the policies against freedom movements of southern Slavs. However, ideas for a unified state did not mature from the conceptual to practical state of planning and few of those promoting such an entity had given any serious consideration to what form the new state should take.

During the early period of World War I, a number of prominent political figures from South Slavic lands under the Habsburg Austro-Hungarian Empire fled to London, where they began work on forming the Yugoslav Committee to represent the Southern Slavs of Austria-Hungary. These "Yugoslavs" were Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes who identified themselves with the movement toward a single Yugoslav or South Slavic state and the committee's basic aim was the unification of the South Slav lands with the Kingdom of Serbia (which was independent although occupied at the time).

With the defeat of the Central Powers in World War I and the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, various South Slavic territories were quickly patched together to form the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes which was proclaimed on December 1, 1918 in Belgrade.

The new kingdom was made up of the formerly independent kingdoms of Serbia and Montenegro (which had unified in the

First Yugoslavia

Lands offered to Serbia by the Allies in 1915

The idea of a South Slav state emerged in the late seventeenth century among Croat writers and philosophers, in reaction to centuries of occupation. The so-named Illyric Movement started gaining large momentum only at the end of the nineteenth century, a result of oppression by Austrian and Hungarian dictators.

World War I

During the early period of World War I, a number of South Slavic prominent political figures, including Ante Trumbić, Ivan Meštrović, Nikola Stojadinović fled to London, where they formed the Yugoslav Committee on April 30, 1915, and began to raise funds, especially among South Slavs living in the Americas. While the committee's basic aim was the unification of the Habsburg south Slav lands with Serbia (which was independent at the time), its more immediate concern was to head off Italian claims in Istria and Dalmatia. In 1915, the Allies had lured Italy into the war with a promise of substantial territorial gains in exchange, and offered independent Serbia Bosnia, Herzegovina, Slavonia, Bačka and parts of Dalmatia.

Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes

King Alexander I (December 16, 1888 - Marseille, France, October 9, 1934.

During June and July of 1917, the Yugoslav Committee met the Serbian Government in Corfu, and on July 20 issued a declaration that laid the foundation for a post-war Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes. As the Austrian Habsburg Empire dissolved, a National Council of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs took power in Zagreb on October 5,1918. On October 29, the Croatian Sabor (parliament) declared independence and vested its sovereignty in the new State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs, comprising the former kingdoms of Serbia and Montenegro (including Serbian Macedonia), Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Austrian land in Dalmatia and Slovenia, and Hungarian territory north of the Danube.

Quarrels broke out immediately about the terms of the proposed union. Croats wanted a federal structure respecting the diversity of traditions, while Serbs sought a unitary state to unite their scattered population. The 1921 constitution established a centralized state, under the Karadjordjevic dynasty of Serbia. The monarchy and the Skupština (assembly) shared legislative power. The king appointed a council of ministers and retained control over foreign policy. The Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes was declared on December 1, 1918, in Belgrade. The most prominent opponent of this decision was Stjepan Radić, the leader of the Croatian Peasant Party. In 1921, on the death of his father, Alexander I inherited the throne of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes.

The assembly only considered legislation that had already been drafted, and local government only transmitted decisions made in Belgrade. The Croats soon came to resent the Serbian monarch and being governed from Belgrade, the Serbian capital. The Croatian Peasant Party under Stjepan Radić boycotted the government of the Serbian Radical People's Party. In 1928, the Ustaše (Ustashe) Party was formed to fight for independence, supported by Italy and Germany. In 1928, Radić was mortally wounded during a Parliament session by Puniša Račić, a deputy of the Serbian Radical People's Party.

Kingdom of Yugoslavia

Map showing banovinas in 1929

After ten years of acrimonious party struggle, in 1929 King Alexander I proclaimed a dictatorship, imposed a new constitution, and changed the name of the state to the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. He hoped to curb separatist tendencies and mitigate nationalist passions. He replaced the historical regions with nine prefectures (banovine), deliberately cutting across traditional ethnic boundaries and named after rivers. Many politicians were jailed or kept under tight police surveillance. The effect of Alexander's dictatorship was to further alienate the non-Serbs of the idea of unity. His policies soon ran into the obstacle of opposition from other European powers due to developments in Italy and Germany, where Fascists and Nazis rose to power, and the Soviet Union, where Joseph Stalin became absolute ruler. None of these three regimes favored the policy pursued by Alexander I.

Alexander was assassinated in Marseilles during an official visit to France in 1934 by a marksman from Ivan Mihailov's IMRO in the cooperation of the Ustaše, a Croatian separatist organization that pursued Nazi policies. Alexander I was succeeded by his 11-year-old son Peter II and a regency council headed by his cousin Prince Paul.

Supported and pressured by Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany, Croatian leader Vlatko Maček and his party managed the creation of the Croatian banovina (administrative province) in 1939. The agreement specified that Croatia was to remain part of Yugoslavia, but it was hurriedly building an independent political identity in international relations.

Under the monarchy, some industrial development took place, financed by foreign capital. The centralized government spent heavily on the military, created a bloated civil service, and intervened in industries and in marketing agricultural produce. By 1941, Yugoslavia was a poor rural state. More than 75 percent of the workforce was engaged in agriculture, birth rates were among the highest in Europe, and illiteracy rates were 60 percent in rural areas.

World War II

Serbian children liberated from Jasenovac concentration camp.

Prince Paul submitted to fascist pressure and signed the Tripartite Treaty in Vienna on March 25, 1941, hoping to keep Yugoslavia out of the war. But senior military officers opposed to the treaty launched a coup d'état when the king returned on March 27. Army General Dušan Simović seized power, arrested the Vienna delegation, exiled Paul to South Africa where he was kept under house arrest, and ended the regency, giving 17-year-old Peter II of Yugoslavia (September 6, 1923 - November 3, 1970) full powers.

Adolf Hitler attack Yugoslavia on April 6, 1941. On April 17, representatives of Yugoslavia's various regions signed an armistice with Germany at Belgrade, ending 11 days of resistance against the invading German Wehrmacht. More than 300,000 Yugoslav officers and soldiers were taken prisoner. The Axis Powers occupied Yugoslavia and split it up. The Independent State of Croatia was established as a Nazi puppet-state, ruled by the Fascist Ustaše militia. German troops occupied Bosnia and Herzegovina as well as part of Serbia and Slovenia, while other parts of the country were occupied by Bulgaria, Hungary and Italy. During this time, the Independent State of Croatia created concentration camps for anti-fascists, communists, Serbs, Gypsies and Jews, one of the most famous being Jasenovac. A large number of men, women and children, mostly Serbs, were executed in these camps.

Following the pattern of other fascist puppet regimes in Europe, the Ustashi enacted racial laws, and formed eight concentration camps targeting minority Roma and Jewish populations. The main targets for persecution, however, where the minority Serbs, who were seen as a trojan horse of Serbian expansionism, and bore the brunt of retribution for the excesses of the Serb royal dictatorship of the First Yugoslavia.

Vladimir Bakarić, Milutinović, Edvard Kardelj, Josip Broz Tito, Aleksandar Ranković, Svetozar Vukmanović-Tempo and Milovan Đilas, members of the Partisan High Command during World War II, in a cave on Vis (island), Adriatic Sea.

In Serbia, the German authorities organized several concentration camps for Jews and members of the Partisan resistance movement. The biggest camps were Banjica and Sajmište near Belgrade, where approximately 40,000 Jews were killed. In all camps, some 90 percent of the Serbian Jewish population perished. In the Bačka region annexed by Hungary, numerous Serbs and Jews were killed in 1942 raid by Hungarian authorities. The persecutions against ethnic Serb population occurred in the region of Syrmia, which was controlled by the Independent State of Croatia, and in the region of Banat, which was under direct German control.

Yugoslavs opposing the Nazis organized resistance movements. Those inclined towards supporting the old Kingdom of Yugoslavia joined the "Yugoslav Army in the Fatherland," also known as the Chetniks, a multi-ethnic, though largely Serb, royalist guerrilla army led by Draža Mihajlović. Those inclined towards supporting the Communist Party, and were against the king, joined the Partisans, also known as the Yugoslav National Liberation Army (NOV), led by Josip Broz Tito.

For every soldier killed, the Germans executed 100 civilians, and for each wounded, they killed 50. Regarding the human cost as too high, the Chetniks terminated war activities against the Germans, and the Allies eventually switched to support the NOV, which carried on its guerrilla warfare. The Yugoslav death toll was estimated at between 1,027,000 and 1,700,000. Very high losses were among Serbs who lived in Bosnia and Croatia, as well as Jewish and Roma minorities, high also among all other non-collaborating population.

During the war, the communist-led partisans were de facto rulers on the liberated territories, and the NOV organized people's committees to act as civilian government.

The Second Yugoslavia

Josip Broz Tito in 1971 during a visit to the Nixon White House.

Democratic Federal Yugoslavia was constituted at the Anti-Fascist Council of National Liberation of Yugoslavia) conference in Jajce, Bosnia-Herzegovina (November 29 - December 4, 1943, while negotiations with the royal government in exile continued. On November 29, 1945, the Federative People's Republic of Yugoslavia was established as a communist state during the first meeting of democratically established and Communist-led Parliament in Belgrade.

The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, formed on January 31, 1946, covered the same territory as its predecessor, plus land acquired from Italy in Istria and Dalmatia. The kingdom was replaced by a federation of six Socialist Republics, a Socialist Autonomous Province, and a Socialist Autonomous District that were part of the Socialist Republic of Serbia. The federation was modeled on the Soviet Union, and the federal capital was Belgrade. The six nominally equal socialist republics were: Croatia, Montenegro, Serbia, Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Macedonia. Serbia's provinces of Kosovo and Vojvodina were given autonomous status to take into account the interests of Albanians and Magyars, respectively.

On April 7, 1963, the official name was changed to the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. The first prime minister was Josip Broz Tito and president Ivan Ribar. In 1953, Tito was elected as president and later in 1974 named "President for life."

Government

Yugoslav Communist Party celebration in 1968.

This second Yugoslavia was at first highly centralized both politically and economically, with power held firmly by Tito's Communist Party of Yugoslavia and a constitution closely modeled on that of the Soviet Union. There were three levels of government: the federation, the republics, and 500 communes (opštine), which were agents for the collection of government revenue, and provided social services.

In 1988, there were about 90 political parties operating country-wide including the League of Communists of Yugoslavia, of which there were 2,079,013 party members. After Tito's death in 1980, the presidency rotated among regional representatives.

Tito was the most powerful person in the country, followed by republican and provincial premiers and presidents, and Communist Party presidents. A wide variety of people suffered from Tito's disfavor. Slobodan Penezić Krcun, Tito's chief of secret police in Serbia, fell victim to a dubious traffic incident after he started to complain about Tito's politics. The Interior Minister Aleksandar Ranković his titles and rights after a disagreement with Tito regarding state politics. Sometimes ministers in government, such as Edvard Kardelj or Stane Dolanc, were more important than the prime minister.

The suppression of national identities escalated with the so-called Croatian Spring of 1970-1971, when students in Zagreb organized demonstrations for greater civil liberties and greater Croatian autonomy. The regime stifled the public protest and incarcerated the leaders, but many key Croatian representatives in the party silently supported this cause, so a new constitution was ratified in 1974 that gave more rights to the individual republics in Yugoslavia and provinces in Serbia.

Military

SOKO G-2 Galeb, first Yugoslav made jet aircraft.

Much like the Kingdom of Yugoslavia that preceded it, the socialist Yugoslavia maintained a strong military force. The Yugoslav People's Army, or JNA, was the main military organization. The regular army mostly originated from the Yugoslav Partisans of the Second World War.

Once considered fourth largest in Europe, the JNA consisted of the ground forces, air force, and navy. They were organized in four military regions, each of which was divided into districts that were responsible for conscription, mobilization, and construction and maintenance of military facilities. The regions were: Belgrade (responsible for eastern Croatia, Serbia with Vojvodina and Bosnia and Herzegovina), Zagreb (Slovenia and northern Croatia), Skopje (Republic of Macedonia, southern Serbia and Montenegro) and Split Naval Region. Of the JNA's 180,000 soldiers, more than 100,000 were conscripts.

Most of its military equipment was domestically produced. Yugoslavia had a thriving arms industry and sold to Kuwait, Iraq, Myanmar, among others. Yugoslav companies like Zastava Arms would reproduce Soviet design weaponry under license as well as create weaponry from scratch. SOKO aircraft was an example of a successful design by Yugoslavia before the Yugoslav wars.

Economy

The economy of Yugoslavia was much different from economies of the Soviet Union and other Eastern European socialist countries. The occupation and liberation struggle in World War II left Yugoslavia's infrastructure devastated. Even the most developed parts of the country were largely rural and the little industry the country had was largely damaged or destroyed.

The communist government nationalized landholdings, industrial enterprises, public utilities, set up a central planning apparatus, and embarked on industrialization. Tito forced the collectivization of peasant agriculture (which failed by 1953). Despite this Soviet-style dictatorship, relations with the Soviet Union turned bitter, and in June 1948, Yugoslavia was expelled from the Communist Information Bureau and boycotted by the socialist countries.

Worker self-management

In the 1950s, worker self-management was introduced, reducing state control of the economy. Managers of socially owned companies were supervised by worker councils, which were made up of all employees, with one vote each. The worker councils appointed the management, often by secret ballot. The Communist Party was organized in all companies and the most influential employees were likely to be members of the party, so the managers were often, but not always, appointed only with the consent of the party.

With the exception of a recession in mid-1960s, the country's economy prospered formidably. Unemployment was low and the education level of the working force steadily increased. Due to Yugoslavia's neutrality and a leading role in the Non-aligned Movement, Yugoslav companies exported to both Western and Eastern markets. Yugoslav companies carried out construction of numerous major infrastructural and industrial projects in Africa, Europe and Asia.

Associated labor reorganization

In the 1970s, the economy was reorganized according to Edvard Kardelj's theory of associated labor, in which the right to decision making and a share in profits of socially owned companies is based on the investment of labor. All companies were transformed into "organizations of associated labor." The smallest "basic organizations of associated labor" roughly corresponded to a small company or a department in a large company. These were organized into "enterprises" also known as "labor organizations," which in turn associated into "composite organizations of associated labor," which could be large companies or even whole industry branches in a certain area. Most executive decision-making was based in enterprises, so that these continued to compete to an extent even when they were part of a same composite organization. The appointment of managers and strategic policy of composite organizations were, depending on their size and importance, in practice often subject to political and personal influence-peddling.

In order to give all employees the same access to decision making, the system was introduced into public services, including health and education. The basic organizations were usually made up of just dozens of people and had their own workers' councils, whose assent was needed for strategic decisions and appointment of managers in enterprises or public institutions.

The workers were organized into trade unions which spanned across the country. Strikes could be called by any worker, or any group of workers, and they were common in certain periods. Strikes for clear genuine grievances with no political motivation usually resulted in prompt replacement of the management and an increase in pay or benefits. Strikes with real or implied political motivation were often dealt with in the same manner (individuals were prosecuted or persecuted separately), but occasionally also met stubborn refusal to deal or in some cases brutal force. Strikes became increasingly common in the 1980s, when consecutive governments tried to salvage the slumping economy with a program of austerity under the auspices of the International Monetary Fund.

Oil crisis

During and after the oil crisis of the 1970s, Yugoslavia's foreign debt grew massively and by early 1980s it reached more than US$20-billion. The governments of Milka Planinc and Branko Mikulic renegotiated the foreign debt at the price of introducing the policy of "stabilization," which in practice consisted of severe austerity measures-the so called "shock therapy economics." During the 1980s, the Yugoslav population endured fuel limitations (40 liters per car per month), car use limited to three days a week, based on the last digit on the license plate, limited imports of goods, and travelers were required to pay a deposit upon leaving the country (mostly to go shopping), to be returned in a year. With rising inflation, this amounted to a travel tax. There were shortages of coffee, chocolate and washing powder. During several dry summers, the government, unable to borrow to import electricity, was forced to cut power.

Collapse

Yugoslavia was once a regional industrial power and economic success. Two decades before 1980, annual gross domestic product (GDP) growth averaged 6.1 percent, medical care was free, literacy was 91 percent, and life expectancy was 72 years. The state provided housing, health care, education, and child care. Citizens lived well on a per capita income of $3000 a year (in 1980 dollars), with one month paid vacation, plus a year's maternity leave, if needed. Respect for workers was a central concern of government and society. But after a decade of Western economic ministrations and five years of disintegration, war, boycott, and embargo, the economy of the former Yugoslavia collapsed.

The Reagan administration of the United States targeted the Yugoslav economy. A 1984 National Security Decision Directive (NSDD 133) advocated "expanded efforts to promote a 'quiet revolution' to overthrow Communist governments and parties," while reintegrating the countries of Eastern Europe into a market-oriented economy.1 Western trade barriers dramatically reduced Yugoslavia's economic growth. In order to counter this, Yugoslavia took on a number of International Monetary Fund (IMF) loans and subsequently fell into heavy IMF debt. As a condition of receiving loans, the IMF demanded "market liberalization" of Yugoslavia. By 1981, Yugoslavia had incurred $19.9-billion in foreign debt. However, Yugoslavia's real concern was the unemployment rate, at one million by 1980.

In 1989, before the fall of the Berlin Wall, Yugoslav federal Premier Ante Markovic went to Washington,, DC to meet President George Herbert Walker Bush, to negotiate a new financial aid package. In return for help, Yugoslavia agreed to even more sweeping economic reforms, including a new devalued currency, another wage freeze, sharp cuts in government spending, and the elimination of socially owned, worker-managed companies.2 Rising inflation coincided with the spectacular draining of the banking system, in which millions of people were effectively forgiven debts or even allowed to make fortunes on perfectly legal bank-milking schemes, involving the use of cheques. Repayments of debts for privately owned housing, which was massively built during the prosperous 1970s, became ridiculously small and banks suffered huge losses.

On New Year's Eve 1989, Ante Marković introduced his program of economic reforms. Ten thousand dinars became one new dinar, pegged to the German mark at the rate of seven new dinars for one mark. The sudden end of inflation brought some relief to the banks. Ownership and exchange of foreign currency was deregulated, which, combined with a realistic exchange rate, attracted foreign currency to the banks. In the late 1980s, it was becoming increasingly clear that the federal government was effectively losing the power to implement its program.

In the 1990s, IMF effectively controlled the Yugoslav central bank. Its tight money policy further crippled the country's ability to finance its economic and social programs. State revenues that should have gone as transfer payments to the republics and provinces went instead to service Belgrade's debt with the Paris and London clubs. The republics were left on their own to survive. From 1989 through September 1990, more than one thousand companies went into bankruptcy. By 1990, the annual GDP growth rate had collapsed to a negative 7.5 percent. In 1991, GDP declined by a further 15 percent, while industrial output shrank by 21 percent.

The reforms demanded by Belgrade's creditors struck at the core of Yugoslavia's system of socially-owned and worker-managed enterprises. The objective of the reforms was to privatize Yugoslav economy and to dismantle the public sector. Yugoslavia was desperate and could not refuse their demand. With external pressure, Markovic's government passed legislation stating that if a business was unable to pay its bills for 30 days running, or for 30 days within a 45-day period, the government would launch bankruptcy proceedings.

In 1989, 248 firms were declared bankrupt or were liquidated and 89,400 workers were laid off. During the first nine months of 1990, another 889 enterprises with a combined work-force of 525,000 workers suffered the same fate. The total industrial workforce was 2.7 million. A further 20 percent of the work force, or half a million people, were not paid wages during the early months of 1990 as enterprises sought to avoid bankruptcy. The largest concentrations of bankrupt firms and lay-offs were in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Republic of Macedonia and Kosovo. Real earnings were in a free fall and social programs had collapsed, creating within the population an atmosphere of despair-a critical turning point in the Yugoslav tragedy.

Ethnic tensions and the economic crisis

After Tito's death on May 4, 1980, ethnic tensions grew in Yugoslavia. The constitution of 1974 paralyzed the system of decision-making, made all the more hopeless as the conflict of interests had become irreconcilable. In the spring of 1990, Marković was supported by 83 percent of the population in Croatia, by 81 percent in Serbia, 59 percent in Slovenia, and by 79 percent in Yugoslavia as a whole. But Marković had coupled his Yugoslavism with the IMF "Shock therapy (economics)" program, giving the separatists in the northwest and the nationalists in Serbia their opening. The appeal of the separatists in Slovenia and Croatia involved offering to repudiate the Marković-IMF austerity thereby helping their republics to "join Europe." The appeal of Slobodan Milošević in Serbia was based around the idea that the West was acting against the Serbian people's interests. These nationalist appeals were ultimately successful.

The end of the Second Yugoslavia

Various dates are considered as the end of the Second Yugoslavia:

  • June 25, 1991, when Croatia and Slovenia declared independence
  • September 8, 1991, when Macedonia declared independence
  • October 8, 1991, when the July 9 moratorium on Slovenian and Croatian secession was ended and Croatia restated its independence in the Croatian parliament (that day is celebrated as Independence Day in Croatia)
  • January 15, 1992, when Slovenia and Croatia were internationally recognized by most European countries
  • April 6, 1992, full recognition of Bosnia and Herzegovina's independence by the United States and most European countries
  • April 28, 1992, the formation of Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

Serbia's influence reduced

Slobodan Milošević.

The largest Yugoslav republic in territory and population, Serbia's influence over the regions of Kosovo and Vojvodina was reduced by the 1974 constitution. Because its two autonomous provinces h

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