On the 16th of February, Mr. Delfin Pllana, Chargé d'Affaires a.i. of the Republic of Kosovo to the Republic of Bulgaria,

and his wife, Mrs. Mimosa Pllana, hosted a reception at the Central Military Club in Sofia on the occasion of the country's national holiday - Independence Day. The event was attended by officials, ambassadors, diplomats, cultural figures, representatives of the Kosovar diaspora in our country. 15 years ago, on February 17, 2008, Kosovo declared its independence.

In his welcome speech, Mr. Delfin Pllana first said "Welcome!" to the attendees. He then expressed his deepest condolences to the Turkish people and the Syrian people, on the occasion of the deadly earthquakes, which killed thousands of people and left thousands homeless. And he turned to his guests:

It is my great pleasure and joy to express my deep gratitude and respect to you for joining us in celebrating the 15th anniversary of the Independence of the Republic of Kosovo. February 17th, 2008 marks a sacred day for us and future generations, it is a day when Kosovars crowned their victims and their dreams to live free, equal and prosperous in their own country, just like other democratic and peace loving nations all over the world. It is a day that embodies the centuries-old struggle for freedom, democracy and independence, but most of all it is a day to honor those who gave everything, including their lives, so that younger generations can live, be proud and prosper in a free, democratic and independent country.

Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is also a great day of honor and respect for our international friends and partners who have been with us on our way to freedom and independence, who have helped Kosovo in terms of moral and human values such as human dignity, human rights and equality between nations. By celebrating our anniversary, we remember and are eternally grateful for the support of friendly nations with whom we share values and who have been by our side, including Bulgaria. In the most difficult times of our history, Bulgaria was by our side. We welcome its support in all phases of Kosovo's post-independence journey. With its recognition on the 20th of March 2008, Bulgaria played an important role in the processes of building our country. Kosovo has been blessed with the support it has received from it, regarding the membership applications in various international organizations.

When Kosovo won its most important battle in international law, defending its independence before the International Court of Justice in 2010, Bulgaria was there to support it. It was a battle in which Kosovo showed that the foundations and values on which it declared its independence are just and an embodiment of the will and values shared with the world's democracies.

Two and a half months ago, we had a visit from our president, H. E. Mr. Vjosa Osmani-Sadriu in Bulgaria at the invitation of the Bulgarian President H. E. Mr. Rumen Radev. Tomorrow, Vice President Iliana Yotova will be a special guest of President Osmani and will honor the official ceremony celebrating the 15th anniversary of Kosovo's independence, which will be organized in Pristina. This shows that the already excellent bilateral cooperation between our countries is building its foundations stronger and stronger through these high-level state visits.

Today, Kosovo has managed to consolidate internally and raise its international subjectivity as a partner bound to share liberal democratic values, achieving remarkable results in strengthening democratic institutions in many ways. The business environment is becoming increasingly competitive and offers attractive investment opportunities, and the road infrastructure is one of the best in the region. Kosovo has a fascinating nature, great cultural heritage and tourism potential, therefore, as the motto goes, "Kosovo is ready for you".

Finally, next week marks the first year of Russia's unprovoked and unjustified military aggression against Ukraine. Kosovo immediately joined the democratic states in taking action and measures against the invasion. Our people know exactly how important the values of freedom and human dignity are, which are defended in Ukraine by the Ukrainian people.

A few words about our diaspora

Dear compatriots,

On behalf of the institutions of the Republic of Kosovo and the Embassy of Kosovo in

Sofia, accept the most heartfelt congratulations for the Independence Day of the Republic

of Kosovo, for your day!

This is a day in which we remember with glory and fondness all those who gave

everything, including their lives, for the freedom and independence of our country. On

February 17, a new chapter was opened in the newest history of Kosovo, and this is a day

in which people of Kosovo fulfilled their dream for an independent, democratic and Free

Kosovo is here and will be forever, happy Independence Day and thank you for your


The mini concert by Trio Vivo and the music of the Kosovar jazz legend Sheki Hoxha and the Bulgarian trumpeter Ventsi Blagoev contributed to the pleasant atmosphere of the reception at the Central Military Club in Sofia. The guests could also see photo and ethnic exhibitions dedicated to Kosovo in the hall.

The photos are provided by the Embassy of the Republic of Kosovo in the Republic of Bulgaria.

Above: Mr. Delfin Pllana, Chargé d'Affaires a.i. of the Republic of Kosovo to the Republic of Bulgaria, cuts the cake with his fellow ambassadors