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Last Updated: Sunday, 17 February 2008, 19:54 GMT
In pictures: Kosovo independence

Man celebrates in Pristina

Kosovo Albanians are celebrating their parliament's declaration of independence from Serbia.

Parliament approval of declaration in Kosovo

Prime Minister Hashim Thaci read out the declaration, which was then approved by a unanimous show of hands.

Beer is given out in Pristina, Kosovo

Free beer was on offer in a street near the parliament in Pristina for thousands of revellers who braved bracing temperatures in the city.


The celebrations got under way on Saturday and went on late into the night before resuming on Sunday. Many Kosovans waved flags of neighbouring Albania.

Boy with red and black paint on his cheeks, Tirana, Albania

There was celebration in Albania too, with the country's national colours of red and black featuring highly as locals gathered in the main square in the capital, Tirana.

Kosovo Albanian children celebrate in Strasbourg

Kosovo Albanian children danced and waved flags in front of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, eastern France.

Kosovo Albanians celebrate in Lausanne, Switzerland

And there was celebration elsewhere in Europe, with Kosovo Albanian expatriates beeping car horns and waving flags in cities such as Brussels and here, in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Serbians protest independence of Kosovo in Paris (17.02.08)

But for Serbians, like these who protested in Paris, the move is seen as disastrous. Serbians have long seen Kosovo as the "cradle of Serbia".

Protesters burn an EU flag in front of the US embassy in Belgrade on February 17, 2008.

In Belgrade, youths threw stones and the group burned an EU flag outside the US embassy in the wake of the declaration.

Police officers carry an injured colleague during clashes with protesters outside the US Embassy in Belgrade, Serbia

This policeman was injured as riot police clashed with an estimated 1,000 demonstrators in the Serbian capital.

French troops set razor wire in Mitrovica

And tensions were high in the ethnically-divided Kosovo town of Mitrovica, where French soldiers boosted security by the Ibar river which splits Kosovo Serbian and Albanian areas.

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