Kosovo at the 2016 Summer Olympics

Kosovo participated at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil from 5 to 21 August 2016. It was represented by the Olympic Committee of Kosovo (KOK/OKK) with a delegation of eight people, including three men and five women.[2] Most of them were awarded places in their respective sporting events through wild card entries and Tripartite Commission invitations. Two Kosovar athletes, on the other hand, qualified directly for the Olympics on merit: judoka Nora Gjakova (women's 57 kg) and Majlinda Kelmendi (women's 52 kg), the lone returning Olympian on the team after representing Albania four years earlier in London. The world's top-ranked judoka in her weight category and the frontrunner for the country's first Olympic medal, Kelmendi was selected to become Kosovo's flag bearer in the opening ceremony.[3]

Kosovo at the
2016 Summer Olympics
Flag of Kosovo.svg
NOCOlympic Committee of Kosovo
Websitenoc-kosovo.org (in Albanian and Serbian)
in Rio de Janeiro
Competitors8 in 5 sports
Flag bearer Majlinda Kelmendi[1]
Ranked 54th
Summer Olympics appearances (overview)
Other related appearances
 Yugoslavia (1920–1992W)
 Independent Olympic Participants (1992S)
 Serbia and Montenegro (1996–2006)
 Serbia (2008–2012)

Kosovo left Rio de Janeiro with its first Olympic gold medal, won by Kelmendi.[4]


This was Kosovo's first participation in the Olympics since gaining membership by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in December 2014. Serbia protested Kosovo's admission to the IOC, as it officially claims that Kosovo is an autonomous province of Serbia. However, Serbia, considering the harmful effects of Yugoslavia's expulsion in 1992, decided against boycotting the 2016 Rio Olympics as a consequence.[5] Kosovo is currently recognised as a state by 97 UN member states.


Medal Name Sport Event Date
  Gold Majlinda Kelmendi Judo Women's 52 kg 7 August


Kosovar athletes have achieved qualifying standards in the following athletics events (up to a maximum of 3 athletes in each event):[6][7]

  • Note–Ranks given for track events are within the athlete's heat only
  • Q = Qualified for the next round
  • q = Qualified for the next round as a fastest loser or, in field events, by position without achieving the qualifying target
  • NR = National record
  • N/A = Round not applicable for the event
  • Bye = Athlete not required to compete in round
Track & road events
Athlete Event Heat Semifinal Final
Result Rank Result Rank Result Rank
Musa Hajdari Men's 800 m 1:48.41 7 Did not advance
Vijona Kryeziu Women's 400 m 54.30 7 Did not advance



Kosovo has received an invitation from the Tripartite Commission to send a rider competing in the men's road race to the Olympics.[8]

Athlete Event Time Rank
Qëndrim Guri Men's road race Did not finish


Kosovo has qualified two judokas for each of the following weight classes at the Games. Nora Gjakova and Majlinda Kelmendi, who previously represented Albania at the 2012 Summer Olympics, were ranked among the top 14 for women in the IJF World Ranking List of May 30, 2016.[9]

Athlete Event Round of 32 Round of 16 Quarterfinals Semifinals Repechage Final / BM
Majlinda Kelmendi Women's −52 kg Bye   Tschopp (SUI)
W 100–000
  Legentil (MRI)
W 000–000 S
  Nakamura (JPN)
W 000–000 S
Bye   Giuffrida (ITA)
W 001–000
Nora Gjakova Women's −57 kg   Amarís (COL)
W 100–000
  Căprioriu (ROM)
L 000–002
Did not advance


Kosovo has received an invitation from the Tripartite Commission to send a women's 10 m air rifle shooter to the Olympics, as long as the minimum qualifying score (MQS) was fulfilled by March 31, 2016.[10]

Athlete Event Qualification Final
Points Rank Points Rank
Urata Rama Women's 10 m air rifle 402.3 48 Did not advance


Kosovo has received a Universality invitation from FINA to send two swimmers (one male and one female) to the Olympics.[11][12]

Athlete Event Heat Semifinal Final
Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank
Lum Zhaveli Men's 50 m freestyle 24.53 57 Did not advance
Rita Zeqiri Women's 100 m backstroke 1:12.31 NR 34 Did not advance


  1. ^ "Kosovo Gets Full Membership In International Olympic Committee". Radio Free Europe. 9 December 2014. Retrieved 24 December 2014.
  2. ^ "Kosovo sending 8 athletes to its first Olympics". USA Today. 19 July 2016. Retrieved 19 September 2016.
  3. ^ Knežević, Gordana (2 August 2016). "Kosovo Will Realize Its Olympic Dreams In Rio". Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. Retrieved 19 September 2016.
  4. ^ Masters, James (10 August 2016). "Majlinda Kelmendi wins gold for Kosovo's historic first Olympic medal". CNN. Retrieved 19 September 2016.
  5. ^ Grohmann, Karolos (10 December 2014). "Kosovo earns Olympic recognition, Serbia furious". Reuters. Retrieved 19 July 2016.
  6. ^ "iaaf.org – Top Lists". IAAF. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
  7. ^ "IAAF Games of the XXX Olympiad – Rio 2016 Entry Standards" (PDF). IAAF. Retrieved 18 April 2015.
  8. ^ "Ky është Ekipi Olimpik i Kosovës – presidenti Hasani: Në Rio shkojmë për medalje!" [Here's the Olympic team of Kosovo; President Hasani: "We're aiming for a medal!"] (in Albanian). Olympic Committee of Kosovo. 19 July 2016. Retrieved 20 July 2016.
  9. ^ "IJF Officially Announces Qualified Athletes for Rio 2016 Olympic Games". International Judo Federation. 23 June 2016. Archived from the original on 7 July 2016. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
  10. ^ "Quota Places by Nation and Number". www.issf-sports.org/. International Shooting Sport Federation. 30 May 2016. Retrieved 30 May 2016.
  11. ^ "Swimming World Rankings". FINA. Archived from the original on 6 January 2011. Retrieved 14 March 2015.
  12. ^ "Rio 2016 – FINA Swimming Qualification System" (PDF). Rio 2016. FINA. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 February 2015. Retrieved 23 January 2015.