Suva Reka

Suva Reka (Serbian Cyrillic: Сува Река, Albanian: Suharekë, also known as Suhareka or Theranda) is a town and municipality located in the Prizren district of central-southern Kosovo.[a] According to the 2011 census, the town has 10,422 inhabitants, while the municipality has 59,722 inhabitants.


  • Suharekë / Suhareka  (Albanian)
    Suhareka or Suharekë,
    Сува Река or Suva Reka  (Serbian)
Komuna e Suharekës
Suva Reka
Suva Reka
Official seal of Suharëke
Location of the municipality of Suva Reka within Kosovo
Location of the municipality of Suva Reka within Kosovo
Coordinates: 42°22′48″N 20°49′19″E / 42.38000°N 20.82194°E / 42.38000; 20.82194Coordinates: 42°22′48″N 20°49′19″E / 42.38000°N 20.82194°E / 42.38000; 20.82194
Location Kosovo[a]
 • MayorBali Muharremaj (AAK)
 • Municipal361 km2 (139 sq mi)
389 m (1,276 ft)
 • Urban
 • Municipal
 • Municipal density170/km2 (430/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
Area code(s)+383 29
Car plates04

Suhareka is located 18 km (11 mi) from the city of Prizren, and 57 km (35 mi) from Kosovo's capital, Prishtina.


Suva Reka means "dry river" in Serbian.[citation needed] The Albanian spellings are Suharekë[1] or Suhareka (derived from the Slavic form), while an alternative[2] name was recently created by the Albanological Institute,[3] Therandë,[4] adopted from an unlocated Roman site (possibly in Suva Reka or Ljubižda in the Miruša valley[5]).[6]


Historical backgroundEdit

The municipality includes several medieval Serbian sites and old settlements, such as the villages of Banja, Dulje, Mušutište, Popovljane, Rečane, and churches of Virgin Hodegetria, St. George, Holy Trinity, St. Nicholas, among others. The settlement of Suva Reka itself was first mentioned in 1465.

Yugoslav periodEdit

From 1929 to 1941, Suva Reka was a village part of the Vardar Banovina of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.

Between 1918 and 1941 the demographic structure of the municipality of Suva Reka has been affected by settlements and colonization such as the Serbian colonization and population settlement, for the most part from the Toplica District.[7]

On the night of 9–10 June 1984, ethnic Albanians desecrated 29 tombstones of the Church of the Holy Saviour.[8][9]

Kosovo War and aftermathEdit

During the Kosovo War (1998–99), the Yugoslav army operated in the region and it was reported that it had killed and wounded many Albanian civilians. According to the Suva Reka office of the Council for the Defense of Human Rights and Freedoms, 430 people were killed in the municipality and 67 people were missing as of late August 1999.

The Suhareka massacre conducted on 26 March 1999 committed by Serbian police officers resulted in 48 victims, fourteen of which were under 15 years old. 46 members of the victims were part of the Berisha family who were targeted because they had rented one of their homes to the OSCE observers in Suva Reke/Suharekë, who provided a sense of security to the local Albanians but withdrew from the area when NATO bombing began. After the slight withdrawal of the OSCE, incidences of abuse increased around late March, specifically with the beating and the harassment of ethnic Albanians residents by the Serbian police. Consequently, tensions soon increased after at least seven ethnic Albanians were killed by police or disappeared in unclear circumstances.

According to the OSCE, killings of smaller numbers of people also took place in the following villages: Bukos (Bukosh), Budakovo (Budakove), Vranic (Vraniq), Geljance (Gelanc), Sopina (Sopine), Mus-utiste (Mushtishte), and Lesane (Leshane).

After the war, Serbian heritage was destroyed all over Kosovo. The churches (including cemeteries) of Virgin Hodegetria, St. George, Holy Trinity, St. Nicholas and others were completely destroyed in 1999 after the arrival of KFOR and the end of the war.[10]

NATO set up a military base in the municipality, Camp Casablanca.



Municipal historical population
YearPop.±% p.a.
Source: Division of Kosovo

According to the 2011 census done by the Government of Kosovo, the municipality of Suhareka had 59,722 inhabitants of which 98.9% were Kosovo Albanians.[11] According to OSCE, the whereabouts of the displaced Serb and Roma communities is unknown.[11]

Twin towns – Sister citiesEdit

Suva Reka is twinned with:

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Kosovo is the subject of a territorial dispute between the Republic of Kosovo and the Republic of Serbia. The Republic of Kosovo unilaterally declared independence on 17 February 2008. Serbia continues to claim it as part of its own sovereign territory. The two governments began to normalise relations in 2013, as part of the 2013 Brussels Agreement. Kosovo is currently recognized as an independent state by 96 out of the 193 United Nations member states. In total, 113 UN member states are said to have recognized Kosovo at some point, of which 15 later withdrew their recognition.
  1. ^ "Suhareke". Retrieved 12 April 2018.
  2. ^ Robert Elsie (15 November 2010). Historical Dictionary of Kosovo. Scarecrow Press. pp. 298–. ISBN 978-0-8108-7483-1.
  3. ^ Saskia Drude (2008). Hundert Wochen Kosovo: Alltag in einem unfertigen Land. Karin Fischer Verlag. pp. 99–. ISBN 978-3-89514-836-1.
  4. ^ Elsie,R. (2010-11-15). Historical Dictionary of Kosovo. p. 268. ISBN 9780810874831.
  5. ^ Arheološko blago Kosova i Metohije: Text. Srpska Akademija nauka i umetnosti. 1998. p. 286.
  6. ^ Andreas Wittkowsky (2011). Grand Hotel Kosovo: Schlaglichter einer europäischen Staatsbildung (in German). LIT Verlag Münster. pp. 69–. ISBN 978-3-643-11425-9.
  7. ^ "Kolonizimi serb i Kosovës" (in Albanian). 9 Jan 2011. Archived from the original on 2011-01-09..
  8. ^ Православље (429). 1 February 1985 Archived from the original on 27 November 2011. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  9. ^ Antonije Isaković (1990). "Kosovsko-metohijski zbornik". SANU: 84. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  10. ^ Влада Републике Србије за Косово и Метохију. "Уништена и оштећена културна добра на Косову и Метохији у периоду од 1999. до 2004. године" (PDF). Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  11. ^ a b
  12. ^ "Komuna Suhareke - Suhareka & Fellbach". Retrieved 2017-01-31.
  13. ^ "Lilburn Becomes a 'Sister City' With Kosovo Town". 16 July 2013. Retrieved 12 April 2018.

External linksEdit