On the streets of the Kosovo capital, Pristina, many mourned the death of their leader: “I’m so sad,” said one man. “He fought for independence and I’m sorry he won’t see it.” “All his life he worked for Kosovo and its people,” said another, “if he had lived just a little bit longer maybe he could have seen independence.” In the Serbian capital, Belgrade, some fear a change for the worst now that Rugova is gone.
One woman said she feared things might take a radical turn. “That’s what I think after watching Rugova’s associates,” she added. “I don’t think his death will change anything in Kosovo,” said another passer-by. “He was just part of a bigger picture and the Albanians will continue in their quest for independence, he was just part of the process.”