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The Yugoslav Wars were a series of violent conflicts fought in former
Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia during the 1990s and 2001. The
wars were characterized by bitter ethnic conflicts between the peoples
of the former Yugoslavia, mostly between Serbs on the one side and
Croats, Bosniaks and Albanians on the other.
Often described as
Europe's deadliest conflicts since World War II, they were characterized
by mass war crimes and ethnic cleansing.
Albeit tensions in
Yugoslavia had been mounting since the early 1980s, it was 1990 that
proved the decisive year in which war became more likely. At the last
Communist party conference in Belgrade in 1991, the congress voted for
an end to the one-party system, as well as economic reform, which
prompted the Slovenian and Croatian delegations to walk out and thus the
break-up of the party, a symbolic event representing the end of
"brotherhood and unity".
The Yugoslav wars may be considered to
comprise of two sets of successive wars affecting all of the six former
Yugoslav republics, including Kosovo: * Wars during the breakup of
the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia: 1. War in Slovenia
(1991) 2. Croatian War of Independence (1991-1995) 3. Bosnian
War (1992-1995) * NATO bombing in Bosnia and Herzegovina (1995) *
Wars in Albanian-populated areas: 1. Kosovo War (1998-1999) *
NATO bombing of FR Yugoslavia (1999)
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