|Biographical detail : ||President of Kosovo who embodied his people’s struggle for the independence from Serbia with peaceful resistance.
He symbolised peaceful resistance to repression under the former Serbian leader and many ethnic Albanians hailed Rugova as the “father of the nation”. The ethnic Albanians who represent 90 per cent of the population of Kosovo want independence from Belgrade.
Kosovo, a province administered by the UN since fighting ended there in 1999. Rugova became Kosovo’s first president in elections organised by the UN in March 2002 and he won second term in 2005.
Rugova who had the aura of authority was awarded the Sakharov Prize for freedom of thought.
He was the target of a bombing in Pristina, but escaped unhurt.
Ibrahim Rugova was born Istog, Kosovo, son of a well-to-do farmer and trader. An avid reader he studied at Sorbonne University in Paris before becoming a prominent author and leading intellectual in the Yugoslav federation. He died of lung cancer.