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2021 | 11 | 2 | 167-207

Article title

Austro-Hungarian Foreign Policy and the Independence of Albania


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This paper aims to analyze the role and impact of the Austro-Hungarian policy on maintaining the territorial status quo in the Balkans at the time when the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire was becoming inevitable. The independence of Albania was because of three main factors: the Albanian revolt in 1912, First Balkan War in 1912/13 and the diplomacy of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy. The Albanian revolt in 1912 gave the decisive blow against the Ottoman administration in Kosovo, which even resulted with the occupation of Skopje, but, due to internal differences Albanians did not declare independence from the Ottoman Empire. The First Balkan War hastened the decision of the Albanian leaders to declare independence, which can also be seen as a reaction of a threat of occupation to the Albanian territories by the Balkan Alliance (Serbia, Greece, Montenegro, and Bulgaria). However, Serbia and Montenegro managed to occupy Northern Macedonia (part of the Vilayet of Manastir). In this context, the role of the Austro-Hungarian diplomacy during the London Conference (1912–1913), was crucial for the recognition of the independence of Albania and the determination of the borders of the Albanian state. Since the occupation in 1878 and the later annexation of Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1908, the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy was strongly interested and involved in the Balkans, both economically and politically. The rivalry between Austria-Hungary and Russia over the dominance in the Balkans intensified since the beginning of the twentieth century and led to a deterioration of their relations. In this context, Austria-Hungary was interested in creating the Albanian state as a counterbalance to Serbian and Russian influence in Southeast Europe, as a barrier to prevent the territorial extension and to block the road of Serbia, wich had already occupied Kosovo, toward the Adriatic.








Physical description


  • Department on Political Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kosovo


Document Type

Publication order reference


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