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Kosovo, which Serbia does not recognize as an independent country, lies to the south as well, along the northwestern border of Albania. Hills and high mountains characterize the central body of Serbia.

Its western margins include sections of the Dinaric Alps, and its eastern borderlands are part of the Carpathian and Rhodope mountain systems.

Before the flooding that followed completion of the joint Yugoslav-Romanian Ðerdap hydroelectric dam in 1972, rocky outcrops confined the river at one point to a width of only 300 feet (90 metres).

Upstream, in the Vojvodina plains, the Danube attains widths of up to 2 miles (3 km) and depths of 45 feet (14 metres) or more.

Bounding the country to the west are the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Slavonian region of the Republic of Croatia.

Serbia adjoins Hungary to the north, Romania and Bulgaria to the east, North Macedonia to the south, and Montenegro to the southwest. Much of the Vojvodina is blanketed by portions of a former plateau that rose up to 100 feet (30 metres) above the territory’s floodplains; the remnants are composed of fine particles of loess deposited by winds during the last glacial period in Europe.

In the late 1990s more blood was spilled when the Albanian-Muslim-dominated Serbian province of Kosovo declared independence, resulting in the intervention of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the United Nations, the bombing of Belgrade, and the placement of Kosovo under UN administration from mid-1999.

Milošević was later defeated in presidential elections and arrested and tried before the International Court of Justice for war crimes, but the rump Yugoslavia remained unstable, as Montenegro threatened to declare independence before negotiating an agreement that maintained the country’s unification in a loose federation.

This kind of union of two states is unusual in comparative systems, which can cause many problems in the activity of a new state.

Nevertheless, the government is trying to solve all the problems on a mutual basis of cooperation.

Belgrade (Beograd), a cosmopolitan city at the confluence of the Danube and Sava rivers; Stari Grad, Belgrade’s old town, is dominated by an ancient fortress called the Kalemegdan and includes well-preserved examples of medieval architecture and some of eastern Europe’s most-renowned restaurants.

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