Well-known scholar of regional and international diplomacy, Shaban Murati, has just published in Tirana his latest book entitled "The Russians are coming".

The book "Russians are coming" is, according to him, an attempt to understand in depth the present and future consequences, which come from the current activity of Russian diplomacy towards Albania, Kosovo and the Balkans.

The publication is a summary of diplomatic analysis of Russia's foreign policy in the Balkans over the past 8 years.

In the voluminous publication with 98 analyzes on the dynamics of Russian diplomacy in the Balkans, the well-known scholar Shaban Murati raises the concern of how pro-Russian and pro-Serbian policies in the region are harming the interests of the Albanian nation.

"Russian diplomacy," Mr. Murati said in an interview with VOA, "is classified as a historical adversary of Albania's independence and Kosovo's independence, and one of the main diplomatic obstacles to the Albanian national cause in the last 110 years."

He says that with this book he draws attention to a geopolitical, diplomatic and strategic phenomenon that threatens the Balkans, Albania and Kosovo.

When I say 'Russians are coming' it's not a day-to-day phenomenon, not just related to the recent Russian aggression in Ukraine, but it is a phenomenon that has characterized 30 years of post-communism in the Balkans, and which unfortunately "It has not been given the proper attention and importance by the so-called democratic governments that came to the Balkans after the fall of communism," said Mr Murati.

The author points out that Russian President Putin has demanded since 2014 a review of the consequences of the Cold War and the division of spheres of influence.

After the first attack on Ukraine in Crimea, Putin considered returning to the Balkans, calling it a region of special interest to Russia, he added.

"The Balkans are for Moscow the weakest point of security on the European continent and an orthodox center, for which it has invested for 100 years since the Tsarist and communist eras, where it can restore its power," said Mr Murati.

Albania and Kosovo, he adds, acted rightly by aligning themselves with NATO, the US and the EU in condemning Russian aggression against Ukraine and sanctions against Moscow, as well as in hosting war refugees;

for Albania it was an obligation, for Kosovo it was a nobility, because Ukraine does not recognize the state of Kosovo.

"Kosovo's position is twice nobler than Albania, because Ukraine does not recognize Kosovo, but Kosovo had the foresight to join the position of NATO and the EU.

We have an alignment of the Albanian factor on the right side, which unfortunately is not very common "- says Mr. Murati.

In 2015, US Secretary of State John Kerry warned that after the crime, the second line of fire would be the Balkans, the author recalls, but the Balkans fell asleep, according to him.

"Russia can not compete with ideals or democratic ideas, which it has never implemented in its territory, so it attacks them even in countries that lean towards the west, attacks the western democratic values ​​of the Balkans and always attacks ideological ties. occult, religious, that have kept him connected with this region "- says Murati.

On the other hand, he evaluates with a critical eye the commitment of Albania in support of the Open Balkans initiative.

"What is the most dangerous phenomenon: Open Balkan is not allowing the Albanian factor to have cohesion in the Balkans.

Serbia's basic strategy towards the Albanian factor with Open Balkan is a rift of the Albanian factor in the Balkans.

We know very well that these last three years the cohesion between Albania and Kosovo is at the lowest quotas and, according to my professional analysis, the guilt, or the main blame for this falls on Tirana "- says the researcher Murati.

He emphasizes that

the Open Balkans is not a tripartite initiative, but is a project of Serbia, initially launched as MiniShengen and as a common Western Balkan economic zone, which it has distributed to the countries of the region from Paris since 2016.

They see the rebirth of Yugoslavia and Albania had to think 10 times before giving an answer to this initiative, adds Murati.

"How can Albania accept to enter a narrow sub-regional sim here here at a time when Serbia does not recognize Kosovo ?!

Serbia has openly stated that in the Open Balkan initiative Kosovo will come as a province;

so it is written in official Serbian documents.

Excuse me, but Albania, as a mother country, is neither a mother nor a stepmother, when it agrees to join a Serbian initiative, at a time when Serbia does not recognize Kosovo.

What is this initiative that has five states and one province ?! ”

- asks Murati.

The well-known diplomat and analyst notes that the presidents of the three countries, who are expected to meet in a few days within the Balkans, northern Macedonia, Montenegro, are against this initiative and against their prime ministers, so these prime ministers can not convince nor their presidents.

While from the American point of view it has become clear, he adds, that the US will support the initiative, if it is related to the Berlin Process and if it will be included in all 6 countries in the region, but these two criteria are not met and the initiative itself is basically wrong.

According to him, the Open Balkan Initiative is an opposition to the process of diplomatic recognition of Kosovo, but no initiative in the region, Murati emphasizes, will not succeed if it is not recognized and if Kosovo is not respected as an equal.

"President Biden has stated that the dialogue between Serbia and Kosovo should focus on the issue of recognition of Kosovo, but two days ago President Vucic swore again that he would not recognize Kosovo and no one reacted," said Mr. Murati.

The latest book, The Russians Are Coming, by Shaban Murati is the 16th edition on regional and international events, a continuation of the Russia-Balkans study.

Shaban Murati is a career diplomat, with the highest titles and duties in this field, as well as the author of a series of studies on international relations of the Balkan countries, from Kosovo, Albania and Greece, Serbia and Bosnia and up to US, EU diplomatic activity. in the region.