In 2008, Kosovo declared independence from Serbia. Was this the final chapter in the break-up of Yugoslavia and the successful conclusion to the Balkan Wars of the 1990s? Or was it just one more wrong turn in the path to stability in the Balkans which has set a dangerous precedent for regional conflict throughout the world? When the UN Security Council authorised negotiations to determine the final status of Kosovo in October 2005, most observers confidently expected the Serbian province to become an independent state by the end of the following year. However, the process did not go as planned. James Ker-Lindsay here charts the course of the status process from 2005 to the present and analyses how and why it went so very wrong. This clear and perceptive account will be essential reading for anyone with an interest in the recent history of the Balkans or in international conflict resolution.