Serbia , officially the Republic of Serbia (Serbian: Република Србија / Republika Srbija, pronounced [rɛpǔblika sř̩bija]), is a country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Pannonian Plain and the central part of the Balkans. Relative to its small size, history and culture, it is a very diverse country distinguished by a transitional character. Serbia is landlocked and borders Hungary to the north; Romania and Bulgaria to the east; Macedonia to the south; and Croatia, Bosnia, and Montenegro to the west; also, it borders Albania through the disputed region of Kosovo. The capital of Serbia, Belgrade, is among the largest cities in East-Central Europe.
Following their settlement in the Balkans, Serbs established several states in early Middle Ages. Serbian Kingdom obtained recognition by Rome and Constantinople in 1217, which was raised to Serbian Empire in 1346. By the 16th century, the entire territory of modern-day Serbia was annexed by the Ottoman Empire, at times interrupted by the Habsburgs. In the early 19th century the Serbian revolution established the nation-state as the region's first constitutional monarchy, which subsequently expanded its territory and pioneered the abolition of feudalism in the Balkans. The former Habsburg crownland of Vojvodina united with the Kingdom of Serbia in 1918. Following World War I, Serbia formed Yugoslavia with other South Slavic peoples which existed in several forms up until 2006, when the country retrieved its independence. In February 2008 the parliament of UNMIK-administered Kosovo declared independence as the 'Republic of Kosovo', with mixed responses from international governments but exercises de facto independence apart from the Serb dominated north which is governed by parallel institutions funded by Serbia.
Serbia is a member of the UN, Council of Europe, OSCE, PfP, BSEC and CEFTA. It is also an official candidate for membership in the European Union and a neutral country.