The Province of Serbia (German: Provinz von Serbien) is a province of the Duchy of Brunswick. The province is made up of the former Republic of Serbia. It is bordered by the provinces of Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and a disputed border with Albania. Its capital is Belgrade.
The Balkan Peninsula was settled in the 6th and 7th century by the Serbs. The first Serbian state was founded in 1166 by Stefan Nemanja. Serbia became the most powerful Balkan state in the 14th century under the rule of Stefan Dusan. Serbia was absorbed into the Ottoman Empire after the Battle of Kosovo in 1389. The Serbians struggled against the Ottoman Turks until the 19th century when they gained their independence in 1878 upon the Russian defeat of the Ottomans. The Balkan War allowed the Balkan states to regain territory from the Ottomans in 1912-1913. The catalyst for World War I was the assassination of the heir to the Austrian throne Archduke Franz Ferdinand I by a Serbian nationalist in 1914.
The end of the First World War brought the creation of the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes, which included the following kingdoms: Serbia and Montenegro; Bosnia-Herzegovina; Croatia-Slovenia; and Dalmatia. The first monarch of this united kingdom was King Peter I of Serbia. Peter I was succeeded by his son, Alexander I. The Croatians desired their own state which caused Alexander I to adopt the role of dictator. Alexander was assassinated in 1934 by a Macedonian in Marseilles, France. Prince Paul became regent for Alexander’s son, Prince Peter.
Prince Paul adopted a policy that favored the Axis powers on March 25, 1941, and his opponents overthrew the monarchy two days later. The Germans occupied the country on April 6. The Partisans and the Chetniks, guerrilla armies, fought against the Germans throughout World War II. The Partisans established a provisional government with Josip Broz Tito as the prime minister and became the Communist Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia. Communist Yugoslavia left the Soviet bloc in 1948.
Tito passed away in 1989 and his death began a rotating presidency to avoid internal conflict. Slobodan Milosevic became president of the Serbian republic in 1989. Croatia, Slovenia, and Bosnia declared independence by 1991. This caused conflict between the Bosnian Serbs and Bosnian Muslims which lasted for four years until the Dayton Peace Accords were signed.
The Yugoslav army and Serbian police began to fight against the Kosovo Liberation Army in 1998, but targeted ethnic Albanian citizens. NATO did not intervene until March 1999 and Serbia began an 11-week war that ended in June 1999 with the signing of a UN-approved peace agreement between Serbia and Kosovo.
Slobodan Milosevic lost the 2000 elections and was handed over for a war crimes trial to the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal in the Hague. His trial ended without a verdict when he died in 2006.
Yugoslavia agreed to create a new state called Serbia and Montenegro in 2002 but did not go into effect until 2003. Montenegro passed a referendum for independence in 2006.
Serbia became a part of the Duchy in 2009.