Serbia and Montenegro

State Union of
Serbia and Montenegro a
Državna Zajednica Srbija i Crna Gora
Државна Заједница Србија и Црна Гора
" Hej, Sloveni"
Хеј, Словени
"Hey, Slavs"
Capital Belgrade b
Languages Serbo-Croatian
Serbian (1997–2006)
Government Confederation (2003–2006)
Federal republic (1992–2003)
 •  1992–1993 Dobrica Ćosić
 •  1993–1997 Zoran Lilić
 •  1997–2000 Slobodan Milošević
 •  2000–2003 Vojislav Koštunica
 •  2003–2006 Svetozar Marović
Prime Minister
 •  1992–1993 Milan Panić
 •  1993–1998 Radoje Kontić
 •  1998–2000 Momir Bulatović
 •  2000–2001 Zoran Žižić
 •  2001–2003 Dragiša Pešić
 •  2003–2006 Svetozar Marović
Historical era Post–Cold War
 •  Constitution 27 April 1992
 •  Established 28 April 1992
 •  UN membership c 1 November 2000
 •  State union 4 February 2003
 •  Dissolution 3 June 2006
 •  2006 102,350 km2 (39,520 sq mi)
 •  2006 est. 10,832,545 
     Density 106/km2 (274/sq mi)
Currency Serbia and Serbian parts of Kosovo
 • Yugoslav dinar (1992–2003)
 • Serbian dinar (2003–2006)
Montenegro and Albanian parts of Kosovo d
 • Yugoslav dinar (1992–1999)
 • Deutsche Mark (1999–2002)
 • Euro (2002–2006)
Internet TLD .yu
Calling code +381
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Today part of   Montenegro
  Kosovo e
a. ^ Known as the "Federal Republic of Yugoslavia" 1992–2003.
b. ^ After 2003, no city was the official capital, but legislative and executive institutions remained located in Belgrade. Podgorica served as the seat of the Supreme Court.
c. ^ Membership as the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia; ISO 3166-1 = CS; UTC offset = +1.
d. ^ De facto currencies used in Montenegro and Albanian parts of Kosovo.
e. ^ Kosovo is the subject of a territorial dispute between the Republic of Kosovo and the Republic of Serbia. The Republic of Kosovo unilaterally declared independence on 17 February 2008, but Serbia continues to claim it as part of its own sovereign territory. The two governments began to normalise relations in 2013, as part of the Brussels Agreement. Kosovo has received formal recognition as an independent state from 113 out of 193 United Nations member states.

Serbia and Montenegro ( Serbian: Srbija i Crna Gora, Србија и Црна Гора; SCG, СЦГ), officially the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro [1] (Državna Zajednica Srbija i Crna Gora, Државна Заједница Србија и Црна Гора), was a country in Southeast Europe, created from the two remaining federal republics of Yugoslavia after its breakup in 1992. The republics of Serbia and Montenegro together established a federation in 1992 as the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FR Yugoslavia or FRY; Savezna Republika Jugoslavija, Савезна Република Југославија), [2] a name which the union held until February 2003.

The state aspired to be recognized as the sole legal successor to Yugoslavia, but those claims were opposed by other former constituent republics. The United Nations also denied its request to take up Yugoslavia's membership. [3] Eventually, after the overthrow of Slobodan Milošević from power as president of the federation in 2000, the country rescinded those aspirations and accepted the opinion of the Badinter Arbitration Committee about shared succession. It re-applied for UN membership on 27 October and was admitted on 1 November 2000. [4]

The FRY was initially dominated by Slobodan Milošević as President of Serbia (1989–1997) and then President of Yugoslavia (1997–2000). [5] Milošević installed and forced the removal of several federal presidents (such as Dobrica Ćosić) and prime ministers (such as Milan Panić). [5] However, the Montenegrin government, initially enthusiastic supporters of Milošević, started gradually distancing themselves from his policies. That culminated in regime change in 1996, when his former ally Milo Đukanović reversed his policies, became leader of Montenegro's ruling party and subsequently dismissed former Montenegrin leader Momir Bulatović, who remained loyal to the Milošević government. As Bulatović was given central positions in Belgrade from that time (as federal Prime Minister), Đukanović continued to govern Montenegro and further isolated it from Serbia, so that from 1996 to 2006, Montenegro and Serbia were only nominally one country—governance at every feasible level was conducted locally (Belgrade for Serbia and Podgorica for Montenegro).

A loose union, Serbia and Montenegro were united only in certain realms, such as defense. The two constituent republics functioned separately throughout the period of the Federal Republic, and continued to operate under separate economic policies, as well as using separate currencies (the euro was the only legal tender in Montenegro). On 21 May 2006, the Montenegrin independence referendum was held, and 55.5% of voters voted in favor of independence. The state union came to an end after Montenegro's formal declaration of independence on 3 June 2006, and Serbia's formal declaration of independence on 5 June. After the dissolution, Serbia became the legal successor of the union, while Montenegro re-applied for membership in international organizations.


With the collapse of Yugoslavia during the 1990s, only the republics of Serbia and Montenegro agreed to maintain the Yugoslav state, and established a new constitution for a new Yugoslavia in 1992. With the collapse of communism across Eastern Europe, the new state followed the wave of democratic change. It abandoned communist symbolism: the red star was removed from the national flag, and the communist coat of arms was replaced by a white double-headed eagle with the arms of both Serbia and Montenegro within it. The new state also established the office of the president, held by a single person, initially appointed with the consent of the republics of Serbia and Montenegro until 1997 after which the president was democratically elected.


With the collapse of Yugoslavia and its institutions from 1991 to 1992, the issue of unity of the two republics remaining in the collapsing federation, Serbia, Montenegro, as well as Serb-majority territories in Croatia and Bosnia that wished to remain united, became an issue. In 1991 diplomatic talks chaired by Lord Carrington with the leaders of the six republics of the collapsing federation, resulted in all the republics except for Serbia agreeing that Yugoslavia had collapsed and that each republic should become an independent state. The Serbian government was surprised and outraged by Montenegro's decision in favour of terminating Yugoslavia, as the Bulatovic government had previously been closely allied with Milosevic's government in Serbia.[ citation needed] Yugoslavia's collapse began in 1991 when Slovenia, Croatia, and the Republic of Macedonia declared independence.

On 26 December 1991, Serbia, Montenegro, and the Serb rebel-held territories in Croatia agreed that they would form a new "third Yugoslavia". [6] Efforts were also made in 1991 to include SR Bosnia and Herzegovina within the federation, with negotiations between Miloševic, Bosnia's Serbian Democratic Party, and the Bosniak proponent of union – Bosnia's Vice-President Adil Zulfikarpašić taking place on this matter. [7] Zulfikarpašić believed that Bosnia could benefit from a union with Serbia, Montenegro, and Krajina, thus he supported a union which would secure the unity of Serbs and Bosniaks. [7] Miloševic continued negotiations with Zulfikarpašić to include Bosnia within a new Yugoslavia, however efforts to include the whole of Bosnia within a new Yugoslavia effectively terminated by late 1991 as Izetbegović planned to hold a referendum on independence while the Bosnian Serbs and Bosnian Croats formed autonomous territories. [7]

Yugoslav Wars

Serb-controlled territories during the Yugoslav Wars

The FRY was suspended from a number of international institutions. This was due to the ongoing Yugoslav wars during the 1990s, which had prevented agreement being reached on the disposition of federal assets and liabilities, particularly the national debt. The Government of Yugoslavia supported Croatian and Bosnian Serbs in the wars from 1992 to 1995. Because of that, the country was under economic and political sanctions, which resulted in economic disaster that forced thousands of its young citizens to emigrate from the country.

In a BBC documentary, called The Death of Yugoslavia, and later in his testimony before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia during the trial of Slobodan Milošević, Yugoslav official Borisav Jović revealed that the Bosnian Serb army arose from the Yugoslav army forces in Bosnia and Herzegovina. He claimed that he had realized that Bosnia and Herzegovina was about to be recognized by the international community, and since Yugoslav People's Army troops were still located there at that point, their presence on Bosnian territory could have led to the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia being accused of aggression. To avoid this, he and Milošević decided to move all JNA soldiers originating from Serbia and Montenegro back into Serbia and Montenegro, and to move all JNA soldiers of Bosnian Serb descent to Bosnia and Herzegovina. [8] In this way, every Bosnian Serb was transferred from the Yugoslav army to what became the newly created Bosnian Serb Army. Through this, the Bosnian Serb army also received extensive military equipment and full funding from the FRY, as the Bosnian Serb faction alone could not pay for the costs. [8] Furthermore, Serbian Radical Party founder and paramilitary Vojislav Šešelj claimed that President Milošević personally asked him to send paramilitaries into Bosnia and Herzegovina. [8]

In 1995, Serbian President Slobodan Milošević represented the FRY and Bosnian Serbs at peace talks in Dayton, Ohio, US, which negotiated the end of war in Bosnia with the Dayton Agreement.

Growing separatism


From 1996, the first public signs of political discord between parts of Montenegrin leadership and the Serbian leadership began to appear. By 1998, simultaneously with Montenegrin Prime Minister Milo Đukanović coming out on top in the power struggle with Montenegrin President Momir Bulatović, the republic undertook a different economic policy by adopting the Deutsche Mark as its currency. During autumn 1999, following the Kosovo War and the NATO bombing campaign, Đukanović (who by now firmly held power in Montenegro as Bulatović was completely squeezed out) drafted a document called Platforma za redefiniciju odnosa Crne Gore i Srbije (A platform for redefinition of relations within the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia) calling for major changes in the division of governing responsibilities within FR Yugoslavia though still officially seeing Montenegro within a joint state with Serbia. Milošević did not respond to the platform, considering it unconstitutional. Political relations within the federal state became more and more strained, especially against the backdrop of the wave of assassinations against top figures from political, criminal, and state business circles in both republics ( Željko "Arkan" Ražnatović, Pavle Bulatović, Žika Petrović, and Goran Žugić as well as two attempts on the life of opposition politician Vuk Drašković). By October 2000 Milošević had lost power in Serbia. Contrary to expectation, Đukanović's response to the power change in Belgrade was not to further push the agenda outlined in his platform, but instead to suddenly start pushing for full independence, thus completely dropping the platform in the process. Subsequent governments of Montenegro carried out pro-independence policies, and political tensions with Serbia simmered despite political changes in Belgrade.

Kosovo War

The Zašto? ("Why?") Monument, dedicated to the employees of the Radio Television of Serbia ( RTS) who were killed during NATO bombing of the RTS building in 1999.

With Milošević's second and last legal term as Serbian President expiring in 1997, he ran for, and was elected President of Yugoslavia in 1997. Upon taking office, Milošević gained direct control of the Yugoslav military and security forces, and directed them to engage Kosovo separatists. The conflict escalated from 1998 to 1999 and became known as the Kosovo War.

Yugoslav forces committed a series of atrocities in Kosovo. To prevent ethnic cleansing, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) under the leadership of the United States began an air campaign called Operation Allied Force against Yugoslav military forces and positions and suspected Serbian paramilitaries. [9] The air attacks against Belgrade by NATO were the first attacks on the city since World War II. Some of the worst massacres against civilian Albanians by Serbian forces occurred after NATO started its bombing of Yugoslavia. The Serbian police and paramilitaries also committed massacres during the war, including the Cuska massacre [10] and the Podujevo massacre. [11] [12] NATO promised to end its bombings of Yugoslavia, when Milošević agreed to withdraw all Yugoslav and Serb security forces from Kosovo. After an array of bombings, Milošević submitted and recalled all forces, and NATO peacekeepers entered Kosovo. [13]

State Union

In 2002, Serbia and Montenegro came to a new agreement regarding continued co-operation, which, among other changes, promised the end of the name Yugoslavia, since they were part of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. On 4 February 2003, the federal assembly of Yugoslavia created a loose state union—the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro. A new constitutional charter was agreed to provide a framework for the governance of the country.

On Sunday, 21 May 2006, Montenegrins voted in an independence referendum, with 55.5% supporting independence. Fifty-five percent or more of affirmative votes were needed to dissolve the state union of Serbia and Montenegro. The turnout was 86.3% and 99.73% of the more than 477,000 votes cast were deemed valid.

The subsequent Montenegrin proclamation of independence on June 2006 and the Serbian proclamation of independence on 5 June ended the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro and thus the last remaining vestiges of the former Yugoslavia.

Other Languages
Alemannisch: Serbien-Montenegro
azərbaycanca: Serbiya və Monteneqro
Bân-lâm-gú: Serbia kap Montenegro
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Сэрбія і Чарнагорыя
Bahasa Indonesia: Serbia dan Montenegro
македонски: Србија и Црна Гора
Bahasa Melayu: Serbia dan Montenegro
Nedersaksies: Servië-Montenegro
norsk nynorsk: Serbia og Montenegro
Plattdüütsch: Serbien un Montenegro
Simple English: Serbia and Montenegro
slovenščina: Srbija in Črna gora
српски / srpski: Србија и Црна Гора
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Srbija i Crna Gora
Tiếng Việt: Serbia và Montenegro