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Section 4


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Section 4

  1. 1. SECTION The Balkan Countries
  2. 2. HISTORY  Conquered & ruled by many groups  Different groups continues to shape life in these areas
  3. 3. EARLY HISTORY  600 B.C.  Greeks founded colonies (Northern Black Sea coast)  Romans conquered most of area (Adriatic Sea to Danube River)  Roman Empire Divided in late 300s A.D.  Area became part of Byzantine Empire  Many became Orthodox Christians at this time  Muslim Ottoman Turks conquered Byzantine Empire  Many people became Muslims  Ottomans drove out in 1800s & separate kingdoms were created
  4. 4. WWI & AFTER  Trouble between Balkan kingdoms & neighbors led to WWI  1800s: Austro-Hungarian Empire took control of part of Balkan peninsula. A man from Serbia shot the heir to Austro-Hungarian throne, starting the war  After WWI  Europe’s leaders divided peninsula  Yugoslavia created (combination of several former independent countries under one gov’t)  Lasted until the 1990s (conflict between ethnic & religious groups)
  5. 5. CULTURE  Most diverse culture area in Europe  Large number of religions practiced & languages spoken
  6. 6. RELIGION  Most are Christian  3 Types: Orthodox Christian, Roman Catholic, and Protestant  Large group of Muslims who follow Islam
  7. 7. LANGUAGE  3 major:  Slavic (related to Russian)  Latin form (related to French, Italian, and Spanish)  German  Some languages are not related to these languages  Albanian  Roma (have own language)
  8. 8. THE BALKANS TODAY  Recovering from weak economies from Soviet Communist gov’t  Poorest in Europe  Religious & Ethnic groups have had serious implications  Violence  Largest religious or ethnic groups tried to get rid of all other groups (threatened with punishments or death)  Known as ethnic cleansing  Troops sent in 1995 & in 2008 fighting ended
  9. 9.  Albania: poorest; struggled since end of Soviet period; high unemployment & crime rates  Macedonia: once part of Yugoslavia, broke away in 1991; did so peacefully  Slovenia: once part of Yugoslavia; joined EU in 2004  Croatia: once part of Yugoslavia; fighting between Croats and Serbs; many Serbs left and peace was restored  Bosnia & Herzegovina: peacefully since end of ethnic & religious violence; people working to rebuild
  10. 10.  Serbia: largest nation of former Yugoslavia; fighting between different ethnic groups  Kosovo: former province of Serbia; independent in 2008; mostly ethnic Albanian  Montenegro: mountainous country separated peacefully from Serbia in 2006  Romania: largest of Balkan states; recovering from years of bad gov’t; poor leaders have left gov’t and economy in ruins  Bulgaria: people are working to develop a capitalist economy based on industry and tourism