Membership of Kosovo in international sports federations

Membership of Kosovo in international sports federations

The following sports federations have either admitted or have received the application from Republic of Kosovo to be admitted into their membership. Kosovo was a part of several federations in the 1990s, but has applied to become a member of many more after its 17 February 2008 unilateral declaration of independence from Serbia. Serbia does not recognise the secession of Kosovo and considers it a United Nations-governed entity within its sovereign territory.

Entity Notes Status Date
International Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles (FILA) FILA admitted Kosovo as an "associated federation".[1][2] Associate 9 June 2008
International Handball Federation (IHF) Kosovo became an "associated federation" of the European Handball Federation in 2004, prior to DOI.[3] Associate 2004
International Ski Federation (FIS) Kosovo has had observer status in the ISF since 2004, prior to DOI.[3] Observer 2004
International Softball Federation (ISF) ISF admitted Kosovo as a full member.[4] Member 12 August 2008
International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Kosovo became a full member in 2003, prior to DOI.[3] Member 2003
International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) IWF admitted Kosovo as a full member.[1] Member 18 June 2008
European Boxing League (EuroLeague) EuroLeague admitted the Kosovo Boxing Federation as a full member.[5] Member March 2009

Rejected membership applications

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) does not recognize the Olympic Committee of Kosovo, created in 1992.[6] Although the president of the IOC's international relations commission announced on 17 February 2008 that the IOC was set to recognise Kosovo,[7] on the following day an IOC spokesperson specified the requirements that Kosovo needs to meet before IOC recognition, most notably its recognition as an independent state by the United Nations.[8]

In October 2008, the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) rejected the Football Federation of Kosovo (FFK) application for affiliation, as it was deemed not to comply with article 10 of the FIFA statutes, which stipulates that only "an independent state recognised by the international community" may be admitted. As a result, Kosovo cannot play any friendly FIFA matches,[9] and many Kosovan soccer players play for other national teams, notably Albania's.[10] In November 2009, FIFA organised a meeting between Kosovo officials, Serbian football associations and FIFA vice-president Geoff Thompson, where practical issues were reportedly discused, including the address to which letters about Kosovo football player transfers should be sent.[11] In March 2011, FIFA President Sepp Blatter said Kosovo could not join the football family before it was recognised by the United Nations.[12]

On 13 November 2008, Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) President Michel Platini said that Kosovo must become a UN member before being allowed into the UEFA or FIFA.[13]

On 26 April 2008, the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) declined to admit the Basketball Federation of Kosova as a member because "Kosovo has not fulfilled all necessary conditions".[14] FIBA and FIBA Europe sports directors Ľubomír Kotleba and Kosta Iliev subsequently visited Kosovo in order to prepare a report for the FIBA Central Board. Kotleba said that "FBK does not need to do anything more to get accepted. If you ask me if Kosovo should be admitted by FIBA, then I say yes. But I don't know when this will happen. The decision for the admission of Kosovo will be taken somewhere else". FBK subsequently reapplied for FIBA membership; its application to be reviewed at the FIBA Central Board meeting on 6–7 December 2008.[15] At the meeting, it was decided that there were no grounds for FIBA to change its decision.[16]

On 30 May 2008, during the 46th International Ski Congress meeting in Cape Town, the International Ski Federation (FIS) decided Kosovo’s affiliation was dependent on its recognition by the UN and that "[in] the meantime, participation of their skiers is permitted at FIS level and children’s races."[17]

On 24 February 2010, the European Tennis Association rejected a membership application by the Tennis Federation of Kosovo.[18]


  1. ^ a b "More recognitions for Kosovo sports" 28 June 2008 Link accessed 2008-06-28
  2. ^ "Official FILA site". 2006-05-01. Retrieved 2010-04-28. 
  3. ^ a b c "Kosovo faces uphill task for sporting recognition",, 27 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-02-28.
  4. ^ "Kosovo Softball Federation wins international recognition" 14 August 2008 Link accessed 2008-08-14
  5. ^ "Euro Boxing League recognizes Kosovo Boxing Federation". New Kosova Report. Retrieved 2009-03-10. 
  6. ^ "Sport in Kosova. The contribution of sport to the international projection of a country" (PDF). Archived from the original on 2008-04-09. Retrieved 2008-03-16. 
  7. ^ "IOC to recognise Kosovo". ANSA. 2008-02-17. Retrieved 2008-02-20. 
  8. ^ "IOC: Kosovo Olympic Team 'Unlikely'". Associated Press. 2008-02-18. Retrieved 2008-02-20. [dead link]
  9. ^ "FIFA's finances solid" FIFA 24 October 2008. Retrieved 15 November 2008.
  10. ^ "Kosovo's football chief to meet head of FIFA". New Kosova Report. 2009-10-30. Retrieved 2009-10-31. 
  11. ^ "Karadžić i Vokri rešavaju pitanje Kosova". Retrieved 2010-04-28. 
  12. ^ Soccer Capsules: FIFA retains World Cup qualifying slots for 2014
  13. ^ Elitsa Vucheva (2008-11-13). "Kosovo status hinders football ambitions". Retrieved 2010-04-28. 
  14. ^ "Meeting of the FIBA Central Board in Beijing", FIBA America, 26 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-30.
  15. ^ ""FIBA delegation endorses Kosovo basketball"". New Kosova Report. 2008-11-24. Retrieved 2008-11-24. 
  16. ^ "Nema osnova da FIBA promeni odluku" (in (Serbian)). Retrieved 2010-04-28. 
  17. ^ "FIS - Decisions of the 46th International Ski Congress in Cape Town (RSA)", Sports Features Communications, 30 May 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-30.
  18. ^ "Kosovo bez članstva u ETA". 2010-02-27. Retrieved 2010-04-28. 

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.