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Southeast Europe or Southeastern Europe (SEE) is a geographical region of Europe, consisting primarily of the coterminous Balkan Peninsula. There are overlapping and conflicting definitions as to where exactly Southeastern Europe begins or ends or how it relates to other regions of the continent. Sovereign states and territories that are included in the region are, in alphabetical order: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Kosovo[a], Montenegro, North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, and East Thrace (part of Turkey). Sometimes, Moldova and Slovenia are also included. The largest city of the region is Istanbul (which straddles the Bosporus strait between Southeast Europe and Western Asia), followed by Bucharest, Sofia, Belgrade, and Athens.
The boundaries of the region can vary greatly and are widely disputed, due to political, economic, historical, cultural, and geographical considerations and point of view of the observer.
The first known use of the term "Southeast Europe" was by Austrian researcher Johann Georg von Hahn (1811–1869) as a broader term than the traditional Balkans, a concept based on the boundaries of the Balkan Peninsula (the countries that have been described as being entirely within the Balkan region are: Albania, Kosovo,[a] Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Montenegro, and North Macedonia).
Geographical Southeast Europe
Countries that are geographically, at least partially, described to be within the region are as follows:
CIA World Factbook
In the CIA World Factbook, the description of each country includes information about "Location" under the heading "Geography", where the country is classified into a region. The following countries are included in their classification "Southeast Europe":
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- North Macedonia
- Turkey (only East Thrace)
- The Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe (SPSEE) included Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Romania and Serbia as member partners.
- The South-East European Cooperation Process (SEECP) includes Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Kosovo, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia and Turkey as member partners.
- The Southeast European Cooperative Initiative (SECI) includes Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia and Turkey as member partners.
- The EU-co-funded South East Europe Transnational Cooperation Programme includes the whole territory of Albania, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Hungary, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Moldova, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, and parts of Italy and Ukraine as part of the "programme area".
- Studies of the World Bank treat Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Moldova, North Macedonia, Romania and Serbia as the eight South Eastern European countries (SEE8).
- A 2006 publication of the World Health Organization (WHO) and Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) listed Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, North Macedonia, Moldova, Romania and Serbia and Montenegro as 'south-eastern European countries'.
- The World Bank does not include the EU countries in its reports, and lists only Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, and Serbia (SEE6).
- UNHCR's Regional Office in South Eastern Europe currently lists Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia and Montenegro as part of 'South Eastern Europe'.
- Српски / srpski
- Srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски
- Tiếng Việt
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