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Francesco Martino

Francesco Martino - Journalist

Degree in Media Studies from the University of Trieste. He worked in the field of international cooperation in Kosovo before becoming  a journalist. He has been living and working in Sofia since 2005 and in Bulgaria he has collaborated with various Italian and international media providers. He speaks Bulgarian, Serbo-Croatian, Slovene and Macedonian. Based in Sofia, he has been working for Osservatorio Balcani e Caucaso since 2006.

Articles by Francesco Martino

Kosovo, the contradictions of the European presence

16/05/2011 -  Francesco Martino

At the beginning of April, through the pages of the British daily 'The Guardian', he expressed very explicit criticism of the work of the European mission and the International Civilian Office in Kosovo. A point of view to be kept in mind, considering that Andrea Lorenzo Capussela worked in Kosovo, until Spring 2011 precisely for ICO. Our interview

Schengen, prisoners of a fragile Europe

12/05/2011 -  Francesco Martino

Although Bulgaria and Romania have met the technical requirements, Bucharest and Sofia will indefinitely remain outside of the Schengen area. A long list of unresolved issues with the two Balkan countries provides substantial reasons for exclusion, but the main problem seems to lie in the increasing fragility of the European political project

Serbia, learning about cheeses

21/04/2011 -  Francesco Martino Pirot

The "pirotski kačkavalj" is much more than a mere cheese, it is the symbol of ancient traditions and an integrated economy that has shaped the Pirot region, in South Serbia, for centuries. A symbol currently at risk, due to emigration from the area and economic difficulties, but one which the students of the local "Mlekarska Škola" are trying to preserve

Behind the wall

06/04/2011 -  Francesco Martino

In the Balkans the era of bloody conflicts is over. But instead of proceeding along the difficult path of dialogue, many are scrambling to raise walls to keep the "other" at a safe distance. And even the European Union doesn't seem immune from such temptations. A comment

Kosovo: A Difficult Year Ahead

27/01/2011 -  Francesco Martino

The election in Kosovo was expected to produce a strong government, capable of entering into new negotiations with Serbia and restarting the economy. Instead, election irregularities and the criminal allegations against Hashim Thaci make the job of the new government very difficult

Kosovo, PDK and AAK joined to govern?

16/12/2010 -  Francesco Martino Pristina

After the polls and despite many fraud allegations, Kosovo is already looking for a new government. According to analyst Genc Krasniqi, the most likely coalition will involve long-time foes Hashim Thaci and Ramush Haradinaj getting together. Our interview

Migrations: Evros, last door to Europe

09/09/2010 -  Francesco Martino

The Evros River, on the border between Greece and Turkey, is the last open door towards the European Union for migrants and political asylum seekers. A road full of risks, filled with accidents and victims. Meanwhile, Greece and the EU are stuck in a logic of permanent crisis and cannot come out of it. Our report


09/02/2010 -  Francesco Martino Sofia

The debacle of Bulgarian European Commissioner Rumyana Zheleva was the first blow to Prime Minister Boyko Borisov's government. Although it is still too early to assess the consequences of Zheleva’s defeat at the national and international levels, the governing party's criteria for choosing its highest-ranking officials should be called into question

Amos Oz: the art of compromise

26/01/2010 -  Francesco Martino Sofia

Amos Oz is one of the best-known names in world literature. An Israeli novelist, essayist, and political activist, Oz is a fervent supporter of the need to reach compromise in order to overcome conflicts. Our correspondent met him in Sofia

Like a house of cards: Zhelyu Zhelev and the Bulgarian 1989

10/11/2009 -  Tanya MangalakovaFrancesco Martino Sofia

On November 10th, 1989, Bulgaria sees the end of Zhivkov and the single party. The events of that year, the ethnic question, and the attempts at lustration in an interview with Zhelyu Zhelev, philosopher and dissident in the years of the regime and first democratically elected president after the fall of the Berlin Wall.