The Issue of Muslim Lands Left in Montenegro after the Treaty of Berlin
Zübeyde Güneş Yağcı
Keywords: Montenegro, Balkan Peninsula, Ottoman State, 93 War, Minority
As a result of the new ideas and political developments in the 19th century, the nations under the Ottoman rule in the Balkans aspired for independence. Notably Russia and other European states that wanted to share the lands under the Ottoman Empire supported their desire and willingness. With their support, Greeks became the first nation to get detached from the Ottoman Empire, followed by Bulgarians, Serbs and finally Montenegrins. The most important problem that resulted from the detachment of nations was the Muslim population living in these areas. The first priority of the Christian states in the regions was to reduce the Muslim population-a policy that led to the displacement of large Muslim population. However, this policy not only caused the Muslims struggle for their lives in the new emigrated regions but also raised the question of their lands and goods that were left behind. In this sense, the Treaty of Berlin has revealed a major change by securing immigrants' belongings that they left behind. In this article I aim to examine the issue of lands and goods left in the territory of Montenegro by the Muslim population after the proclamation of Montenegro as an independent state by the Treaty of Berlin. The article is based mainly on the problems faced by the Muslim population which emigrated from Montenegro for various reasons and for not wanting to live under the Montenegrin state sovereignty and their continuing activities to exercise their rights on their belongings, at least through receiving revenue on their goods.