Kosovan embassy celebrates Kosovo Independence Day in Riyadh
Kosovo’s Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Lulzim Mjeku and his wife Valbona Fetiu Mjeku hosted an event in Riyadh’s Cultural Palace on March 9 to mark both Kosovo Independence Day, which is celebrated annually on Feb. 17, and the 25th anniversary of the Epopee of the Kosovo Liberation Army.
The event was attended by a number of diplomats, including Col. Shannon Whiteman from the US embassy in the Kingdom, as well as the ambassadors of Egypt, Sudan, Algeria, the UAE, Switzerland, and more.
The undersecretary of Riyadh principality, Dr. Faisal bin Abdulaziz Al-Sudairy, and several members of the diplomatic corps accredited to the Kingdom, including Abdullah Al-Rashid, the director of the general department for diplomatic corps affairs at the foreign ministry, also attended.
“My country is 15 years old. It is the youngest in Europe, and our journey to freedom, independence, and statehood was long and uneasy, with lots of obstacles,” Mjeku said in his address to the guests.
“We do not forget the time when the international community stepped up to help us as a state. We have done a lot to rebuild our lives and heal the wounds of the past, and I am proud to represent the country and its people — solid, resilient, dynamic, innovative and ambitious. It is a country that is devoted to peace and human progress, a country which is a cornerstone of stability in Southeast Europe,” he added.
King Salman sent a cable of congratulations to Kosovo President Vjosa Osmani-Sadriu on the anniversary of her country’s Independence Day, in which he expressed his best wishes for good health and happiness for Osmani-Sadriu and for progress and prosperity for the government and people of Kosovo.
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman sent a similar cable.
In his speech, Mjeku noted some of Kosovo’s main accomplishments since its independence.
“Our talented and hardworking youth lead a thriving IT market which exports 70 percent of its services to the world,” he said. “Young people can transform the tech industry and, in doing so, they can change the world.”
He added: “In 15 years of statehood, Kosovo has collected 70 medals in international sports, including six Olympic medals.”
Mjeku told Arab News that he often reminds himself that, as societies, Saudi Arabia and Kosovo are similar, because the vast majority of people in both countries are aged under 30.
“I wish all the best to Saudi Arabia and to my country on this very special day, because we need to further develop and work on this great human asset which is the youth,” he said.
During the 15 years since independence, Kosovo has established strong ties with the Kingdom.
“I think that we have good leadership, especially Saudi Arabia — due to the guidance of King Salman and his Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman,” he said.
“I wish all the best to Saudi Arabia for its National Flag Day, and I cherish the friendship between Kosovo and Saudi Arabia.”