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Serbia at a loss to stop population decline

After a decade of war and isolation in the 1990s, Serbia is struggling to rebound since the overthrow of Slobodan Milosevic in 2000. Hundreds of thousands fled the country in search of a better life. For those who stayed, there is a strong migration from rural to urban locations in search of jobs.

Marko Djurica / Reuters

An elderly woman looks on as she tends her goats in the southern Serbian town of Trgoviste Nov. 8. Serbia has lost more than 377,000 people -- 5 percent of its population -- over the past nine years, according to the results of its most recent census released last month. Many municipalities such as Trgoviste offer incentives for people to stay and have babies, to no avail, as statistics show a migration from village to city as Serbs abandon rural life in search of jobs. The trend towards small families has driven up the national average age to 42.

Marko Djurica / Reuters

Schoolchildren look out of a classroom window in the southern Serbia's town of Trgoviste Nov. 8.

Marko Djurica / Reuters

An elderly woman walks past death notices in the southern Serbian town of Trgoviste Nov. 8.

Read more in this Reuters report.