Belgrad: "Niederschmetternde" Bilanz der UNO-Mission im Kosovo
UNMIK-Angaben über Rückkehr "Fiktion" - Debatte im Sicherheitsrat
Im Folgenden dokumentieren wir eine Pressemeldung über einen Bericht in einer Belgrader Zeitung, worin heftige Kritik an der UNMIK-Mision geübt wird. Sie habe nicht verhindert, dass bis zum heutigen Tag serbische Bewohner im Kosovo immer wieder Opfer von Überfällen und Vertreibungen werden.
Der UN-Sicherheitsrat befasste sich am 10. Juni mit der Lage im Kosovo. Hierzu sich gibt es eine Presseerklärung (in Englisch) sowie - ebenfalls in Englisch - Auszüge aus dem Sitzungsprotokoll, darunter auch eine Stellungnahme des deutschen UN-Botschafters.
Belgrad - Serbien-Montenegro hat eine "niederschmetternde" Bilanz der UNO-Mission im Kosovo (UNMIK) gezogen. Seit Beginn der Mission in der südserbischen Provinz vor vier Jahren seien 6.391 Überfälle auf Kosovo-Serben registriert worden, sagte der Leiter der Rechtsabteilung des Belgrader Koordinierungsausschusses für das Kosovo, Vladimir Bozovic, am heutigen Donnerstag (12.06.2003) gegenüber der Tageszeitung "Novosti".
Demnach wurden 1.194 Personen getötet und 1.305 verletzt. In derselben Zeitspanne wurden laut Bozovic 1.138 Kosovo-Serben entführt, wovon 155 Menschen von ihren Entführern getötet und 95 befreit wurden. Weitere 13 Menschen gelang die Flucht. Das Schicksal der übrigen Entführten ist unbekannt. Nur heuer notierte der Koordinierungsausschuss laut Bozovic 164 Angriffe auf Kosovo-Serben.
Bozovic: Angaben eine "Fiktion"
"Sollte jemand das Gefühl haben, dass die Zahl der ethnischen Konflikte zurückgegangen ist, dann wohl nur deswegen, weil die Zahl der Serben im Sinken ist", kommentierte der Belgrader Anwalt die Angaben von UNMIK-Sprechern über die "drastisch" verbesserte Sicherheitslage im Kosovo. Bozovic bezweifelte auch UNMIK-Angaben, wonach in den letzten vier Jahren zwischen 3.000 und 4.000 geflüchtete Kosovo-Serben in die Provinz zurückgekehrt seien. Diese Angaben seien eine "Fiktion". Der Koordinierungsausschuss soll nämlich nur die Rückkehr von 164 Personen registriert haben.
Laut Bozovic würde etwa die Hälfte der nach dem Krieg aus dem Kosovo geflüchteten Serben gerne in die Provinz zurückkehren. Allerdings seien von 28.000 Anträgen auf Aussiedlung von Albanern, die Häuser der geflüchteten Serben besetzt hatten, bisher von den zuständigen Kosovo-Behörden erst fünf Prozent positiv gelöst worden, behauptet Bozovic.
Die offiziellen Vertreter Belgrads untermauern immer wieder ihre These über die ethnische Säuberung in der Provinz auch mit Angaben über die Serbenzahl in der Kosovo-Hauptstadt Pristina. Bozovic sagte gegenüber "Novosti", dass von den 20.700 Serben, die vor dem Krieg in der Stadt gelebt hätten, nur noch 100 übrig geblieben seien.
Aus: Der Standard, 12. Junin 2003
The Security Council met this morning to consider the situation in Kosovo. It was expected to hear a briefing by the Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Hedi Annabi, on recent developments.
Briefing by Assistant Secretary-General
HEDI ANNABI, Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, noting that it was the fourth anniversary of the adoption of resolution 1244 (1999), said that today Kosovo was much different than it was four years ago. Working together with its partners in Kosovo, the United Nations had put in place a process designed to stabilize and normalize the situation. The progress was evident, including reconstruction of basic infrastructure, restarting of public services, health care and pensions, provision of basic documents, an increasingly professional and local police and judiciary, three successful elections and the establishment of municipal and central level self-government bodies. At the same time, much remained to be done in developing provisional democratic self-governing institutions and ensuring conditions for a peaceful and normal life for all the inhabitants of Kosovo.
The fact that there was still some way to go was highlighted in a most horrific way recently, he said, when three Kosovo Serb residents were brutally murdered in Obilic Municipality on 4 June. An 80-year-old man, his 78-year-old wife and their 53-year-old son were beaten to death with a blunt instrument. Their home was then set on fire.
He said the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) had taken a number of concrete steps to find and bring to justice the perpetrators of that heinous crime. A nine-member UNMIK “Special Police Squad” had been established to investigate the crime, working with special advisers from both the Kosovo Serb and Kosovo Albanian communities. A reward for information leading to the arrest and sentencing of the those responsible for the murders had been offered and a 24-hour protected telephone line set up to receive information. UNMIK Police and the multinational security force (KFOR) had both put in place additional patrols and other security measures. The UNMIK and representatives of Kosovo’s Provisional Institutions -– Assembly, Government and President -- and Kosovo Albanian and Kosovo Serb political leaders had condemned the murder and had called for the perpetrators to be brought to justice.
The UNMIK and the Kosovo Provisional Institutions continued their joint efforts to transfer non-reserved responsibilities listed in chapter 5 of the Constitutional Framework to the Provisional Institutions, he said. The Transfer Council met for the second time on 28 May and agreed on the transfer of 19 non-reserved competencies to the Provisional Institutions, with a further 17 to be transferred as soon as the Provisional Institutions had the capacity to assume them. Eight competencies were returned to the working groups for further consideration. Kosovo Serb representatives did not participate in the Transfer Council’s meeting.
The Provisional Institutions continued their work, with a particular emphasis on legislative development, he said. Since the Council was last briefed, the four laws, which had been returned to the Assembly for revision, since they were fully compliant with resolution 1244 (1999) and the Constitutional Framework, had been promulgated, with two of the laws revised by the Assembly and two under the authority of the Special Representative. The Kosovo Assembly also adopted six new laws, with one outside its area of competence. The Assembly, in a special procedure, had also agreed to the provisional criminal and the provisional criminal procedure codes, which, as reserved competencies, would be issued as UNMIK regulations. The Assembly, however, did instruct an “appropriate body” to draft a law on elections, which was outside its area of competence.
On 15 May, the Assembly had endorsed a controversial resolution on “the liberation war of the people of Kosovo for freedom and independence”, he said. While the resolution might have brought the Kosovo Albanian political parties closer to a common view of their respective roles in the conflict, it was clearly not conducive to cross-ethnic dialogue and reconciliation. The Special Representative had issued a declaration stating that the text of the resolution was divisive and against the spirit of resolution 1244 (1999). In addition, the hosts of three international meetings decided to withdraw the invitations to attend.
The Kosovo Serb caucus –- Conciliation Return -– had participated in all Kosovo Assembly sessions since April, he continued. Coalition Return members walked out of a plenary session on 15 May during a discussion of the resolution on the “liberation war of the people of Kosovo for freedom and independence”. They returned for the rest of the session, however, after the resolution was passed.
Developments in the municipalities had been slow, he said. One third of the municipalities were still not run in accordance with democratic values due to political boycotts, mainly by Kosovo Albanian parties, leading to gridlock. The provision of fair share financing to minority communities and the use of official languages in documents and signs in most of the municipalities remained poor.
The UNMIK reported, he said, that the crime statistics for the first four months of 2003 showed that there had been a reduction in cases of murder, burglary and robbery in comparison with the same period for 2002. Incidents of what appeared to be inter-ethnic violence were, however, a cause for concern. The Kosovo Police Service continued its development; there were now some 5,500 local police officers, in comparison to just over 4,000 international police officers. UNMIK Police continued to build relations with their Serbian counterparts. Police cooperation with the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia was expanding through regular contacts.
Freedom of movement for the Kosovo Serb community remained difficult, he said. The recent triple murder in Obilic would be a setback in that regard by contributing to an increasingly negative perception of security conditions concerning their free movement. Increased freedom of movement for Kosovo Serbs had also been hindered by the decision of the Serbian Government authorities not to sign an agreement on the use of Kosovo license plates in Serbia proper and by their public calls for Kosovo Serbs not to register their cars with UNMIK. On
13 May, however, UNMIK and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia had reached an agreement on the mutual recognition of vehicle insurance so that vehicles with Kosovo license plates could travel freely in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia under a comprehensive insurance policy.
He said that a comprehensive and coordinated framework to support minority returns was in place, with local authorities in nearly half of the municipalities working with representatives of the displaced community in municipal working groups. Nevertheless, the horrific murders on 5 June were a “serious setback” for United Nations’ efforts to foster multi-ethnicity in Kosovo and create conditions for the return of Kosovo Serbs and others to areas where they were a minority. Return efforts also faced a substantial shortfall in funding, with only 55 per cent of returns projects funded and a gap of 72 per cent in funding for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)-UNMIK Rapid Response Returns Facility, which provided assistance to individual returns.
In the economic area, he said, the Special Representative promulgated a regulation on the transformation of the right of use to socially owned immovable property. That regulation converted land use rights held by socially owned enterprises into 99-year leaseholds, which could be freely transferred and used as a guarantee for security credits without affecting underlying ownership title. The Kosovo Trust Agency Board announced, on 15 May, tenders for the first six enterprises earmarked for the first wave of privatization. Any government, person or entity who asserted that their rights had been adversely affected by the privatization process might submit an appeal to the Special Chamber of the Supreme Court of Kosovo.
Unfortunately, the dialogue between Belgrade and the Kosovo Provisional Institutions had not started, he said. Limited, working level contacts had taken place, however, between representatives of the Provisional Institutions and their Serbian counterparts in the fields of transport and returns. A travel ban was imposed on members of the Kosovo Protection Corps (KPC), following the bombing of a railway bridge in Zvecan on 12 April, in which members of the KPC were thought to be involved. That ban had since been lifted on a case-by-case basis, and the KPC had been asked to disclose the names of members who might be associated with extremist groups. Meanwhile, more than 30 per cent of positions set aside for minorities had been filled, although minorities were not yet present in the higher ranks.
He said that, four years into UNMIK’s mandate, there had been significant progress, but challenges still lay ahead, such as freedom of movement, meaningful minority participation, returns, institutional development of local bodies and dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina. Since the emergency phase, the focus had been on political and institutional development. In 2000 and 2001, UNMIK established the legal framework for Kosovo’s path towards substantial autonomy. Following the establishment of the Provisional Institutions, the benchmarks set out by the Special Representative and the policy of “standards before status” had been, and remained, the guiding principles for the current phase.
Political pressure on UNMIK had significantly increased, he went on. On the one hand, the Provisional Institutions, particularly the Kosovo Assembly, had overstepped their competencies on a number of occasions. On the other hand, Belgrade continued to seek co-governance with UNMIK and, in lending support to parallel structures, supported the boycott of UNMIK policy and programmes. Continuing unilateral calls from Kosovo Albanians, Kosovo Serbs and Belgrade for mutually exclusive solutions on Kosovo’s future had not contributed to reconciliation and inter-ethnic dialogue. That had frozen movement forward on a number of key issues. At the same time, organized criminal groups and extremist elements were increasing their intrusions into political life.
He stressed that UNMIK would continue to do its best to ensure that all developments in Kosovo remained within the framework of resolution 1244 (1999) and the Constitutional Framework. The UNMIK had continued to focus on the implementation of the mandate, in line with the “standards before status” policy framework. The Council’s continued and active support of the Mission had been, and would continue to be, crucial for the full implementation of the mandate.
MICHEL DUCLOS (France) said that last week the Council had firmly condemned the reprehensible murder in Obilic. That crime ran counter to the common action that the Council had been undertaking for four years since the adoption of resolution 1244 (1999), aimed at transforming Kosovo into a modern, democratic and multi-ethnic society. He could in no way indulge those trying to ruin the efforts of the international community. Everything must be set in motion then so that the ethnic violence would cease in Kosovo, a violence which primarily victimized the Serb community. He supported the measures taken by the Special Representative and would closely monitor the investigation.
He recalled that the Provisional Self-Governing Institutions had, as their particular responsibility, to establish a climate conducive to implementing the objectives of the international community for the benefit of the entire Kosovo population. The Kosovo Assembly, in particular, must refrain from those initiatives that ran contrary to resolution 1244 (1999) or to the Constitutional Framework. Those initiatives only divided the Kosovar communities. He expected autonomous institutions to work in good faith with the Special Representative and UNMIK, so as to implement the norms put forth by the international community, particularly minority rights and the establishment of direct dialogue between Pristina and Belgrade on issues of common and practical interest.
JAMES B. CUNNINGHAM (United States) said the Assistant-Secretary-General showed that, while much had been accomplished in four years since the adoption of resolution 1244 in 1999, much remained to be done. It pained him to begin his intervention with a condemnation of violence, as he had done in April. Referring to the violent murders in Obilic, he said the killing appeared to have been motivated by the early success of the Serbian Return programme. He supported measures by the Secretary-General’s Special Representative to bring the perpetrators to justice and to encourage close cooperation. President George W. Bush had signed an executive order on 28 May revoking national emergences declared in 1992 and 1998, putting in place additional national measures to combat extremism in the region.
The Council must not allow, however, the violence by a small minority to hinder what had been achieved and what would be achieved, he said. The United States was pleased that a UNDP expert had arrived for UNMIK’s plan for implementing the benchmarks. The implementation plan was a critical step in reinforcing the benchmark progress. On the economic front, privatization must move forward without delay. Privatization was the best hope of generating economic activity in Kosovo. Kosovo must not be left without economic means. Property rights must be clearly established. Work should begin to set up a claims register to provide full information to potential buyers.
The United States strongly urged UNMIK, the Provisional Institutions and the Government of Serbia and Montenegro to create a constructive dialogue. While it was a difficult process, it was the only way to resolve the issues before the Council and the only way to create a stable government. The United States was looking to ways to foster that development.
MIKHAIL WEHBE (Syria) condemned the recent murder of the family in Obilic. That incident threatened security in Kosovo, in general. He supported UNMIK’s efforts to arrest and bring to justice the perpetrators of the crime. He also supported the gradual transfer of competencies to the self-governing institutions. He emphasized the importance of the security situation and the need to prevent the recurrence of such crimes. Those matters would have an impact on the return of refugees and internally displaced persons, and their active participation in rebuilding Kosovo, which desperately needed the participation of all ethnic groups in political and socio-economic life. Dialogue between the different ethnicities must be promoted to build a multi-ethnic society in Kosovo, with tolerance among the different ethnic groups.
He emphasized the importance of the continuation of dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina, so that local self-governing institutions would join UNMIK in starting dialogue with neighbouring countries. He also emphasized the importance of safeguarding the freedom of movement for all ethnic groups. He thanked the Secretary-General for his efforts, in particular, those by his Special Representative, to bring about stability in an important part of the world. They deserved the Council’s full support.
WANG YINGFAN (China) said that the Provisional Institutions should scrupulously fulfil their obligations and continue to take effective action to crack down on crime, guarantee the rights and interests of minorities, promote economic development, and fully cooperate with UNMIK and the Government of Serbia and Montenegro, with a view to the early achievement of the social stability, economic development and ethnic harmony of Kosovo.
He condemned the recent atrocities and acts of violence. Those undermined the social stability of Kosovo. He appreciated the tireless efforts of UNMIK for the restoration of stability, and the establishment of the rule of law, economic harmony and social development. He supported the series of benchmarks and he hoped UNMIK would continue to effectively carry out its mandate and satisfactorily deal with decentralization. It should also continue to take further measures to ensure that the Provisional Institutions fulfilled their responsibilities.
GUNTER PLEUGER (Germany), expressing concern at the growing confrontational attitude towards the international community; particularly against UNMIK, demanded full respect of Security Council resolution 1244 by all sides and rejected attempts to undermine UNMIK’s authority in the country.
He denounced any attempts to force UNMIK into “co-governance” and any similar interference with the authority of the Special Representative. Only the Security Council had the power and the final word to assess the implementation resolution 1244. Unilateral moves or arrangements intended to predetermine the status for the whole or parts of Kosovo were unacceptable.
He said Germany expected the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government in Kosovo to meet the benchmarks set out to advance and develop policies for all people in Kosovo in promoting the economy and the development of the social system. He further urged the leadership there to guarantee minority rights, particularly the freedom of movement. He said it was important that an environment was now created, both through legislative and administrative acts, conducive to the sustainable return of minority refugees and internally displaced persons. He also reaffirmed Germany’s support of the European Union’s intention to confirm at its forthcoming summit with South-East European countries the European perspective for the Balkan region, noting that Kosovo was part of that process.
SERGEY LAVROV (Russian Federation), speaking in his national capacity, said huge efforts had been put into a settlement and considerable progress made. The problems, however, remained more than the solutions. The major conclusion today was that four years after deployment of special missions there was a lack of freedom of movement and security for the local population. Discrimination continued, in particular, against the Serbian minority. The brutal murder of a Serbian family on 4 June was a flagrant example of that. It was important not only to punish such crimes, but also to double efforts in the region, where extremist forces continued. In April 2003, the international legal defence organization, Amnesty International, had noted serious violations of minority rights in the region.
The idea of building a multi-ethnic society had bogged down, he continued. The leaders of the Provisional Institutions of Self Government frequently shirked their obligations placed on them by resolution 1244 and the Constitutional Framework. They endeavoured to advance decisions that incited racial hatred. Without radical improvement of the situation, the participation of minorities in self-government institutions and the disbanding of parallel structures could not be expected. He was concerned about the KPC as a paramilitary successor of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA). The leadership of the KPC was trying to turn the Corps into an army for an independent Kosovo.
Unfortunately, UNMIK’s reaction had been confined to a one-month travel ban of corps workers abroad. The KPC was a potential source of destabilization in the region. In that regard, he called on UNMIK to take a more active position in countering the growth of radical groups in the region. There had also been serious impediments in establishing dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina. He supported “standards before status”. The international presence must strengthen oversight over the process and not allow attempts to use institutions for political purposes. The process of power transfer could not be a substitute for a decision on the Kosovo’s status. He regretted interruptions in the dialogue between UNMIK and the Belgrade authorities. Urgent steps must be taken to restore cooperation between them.
He said the Russian Federation had serious concern about the land rights decree, which might have too far-reaching consequences. He expected that assessments by Council members today would be borne in mind by UNMIK leaders in the efforts for full implementation of resolution 1244.
DEAN SAHOVIC (Serbia and Montenegro) said that, at the time of the adoption of Security Council resolution 1244 (1999), a future without fear of persecution was envisaged through the establishment of a multi-ethnic, democratic and lawful society in which the civil, political and human rights of all would be ensured. The text sought to prevent new conflicts, create a secure environment for the returns of refugees and internally displaced persons, demilitarize the KLA and establish substantial autonomy and self-government.
He said that if peace could be defined solely as the absence of war, there was peace in Kosovo and Metohija. Security was selective, for the majority and not for the minorities, and freedom of movement was the privilege only of the majority. The fate of more than 1,000 missing Serbs had not yet been resolved, and there was little stability overall. Nearly one-quarter million internally displaced persons from minority communities could not return. A gruesome example of the “real” cause for the absence of returns was the bludgeoning to death of two 82-year olds and their son in Obilic on 4 June. They were natives of that town and had placed their trust in the international administrators of the Province to ensure their safety.
Given the fact that all forms of violence against minorities -– including terrorist attacks -– had thus far garnered only verbal condemnation, he said, it was unclear what arguments would be offered to 18 Serb families in Obilic to reconsider their decision to leave the town forever. Security could not be achieved by words. The perpetrators of the above-mentioned atrocity had not been identified, much less brought to justice. If all perpetrators were not speedily brought to justice, that recent killing would serve to strengthen the culture of impunity surrounding the violence against minorities. That would offer further evidence that minorities, particularly Serbs, did not enjoy the basic human right to life, let alone any other rights.
He called on the Council to see to it that UNMIK ensure that violence was not, yet again, confirmed as a legitimate political means in Kosovo and Metohija. Absent that outcome, the latest atrocity would be a further setback in creating sufficient confidence for initiating a dialogue on practical issues –- a dialogue whose establishment his Government had consistently supported. Regarding the most recent resolution of the Kosovo Assembly, which called for regulating the “status of the fighters for freedom and independence of Kosovo”, the KPC had retained and enhanced military capacities and was engaged in tireless efforts to preserve itself as a future army.
It was absolutely necessary to operationalize the benchmarks, which had been based on the principle of “standards before status”, he said. If the aim truly was to establish institutions functioning according to basic principles of democracy, the transfer process should be firmly conditioned on the capacities of the Provisional Institutions to responsibly exercise the authority entrusted to them for the benefit of all communities in the Province. In some cases, UNMIK itself was not contributing to the implementation of the benchmarks. On property rights, for example, its regulation 2003/13 clearly was not a step towards fulfilling the related benchmark, but had added confusion.
He said that by promulgating that regulation, the Mission had taken steps outside its authority. The regulation created consequences of a structural and permanent character. A 99-year land lease was brushed off as a “temporary measure” that did not merit consultation with the landowners. That disregarded the fact that the measure would exceed by far the term of the United Nations administration itself. He was speaking of a permanent transfer of socially owned property and, to a large extent, the property of the Republic of Serbia. That regulation would also jeopardize the return of property nationalized after the Second World War to their rightful owners. He had so far received no response from the United Nations Legal Counsel to his request for an explanation of the legal basis of that regulation.
The need for privatization in Kosovo and Metohija was indisputable, he said. The method of establishing a privatization model without the participation of the Republic of Serbia as the largest creditor, however, was highly disputable. Among other obvious consequences, that model was certain to adversely affect the return of internally displaced persons. He expected that those legitimate concerns would be addressed prior to the full implementation of the privatization process. His country had fully complied with resolution 1244 (1999) and, in the last two and one-half years, it had constructively participated in its implementation. Efforts to cooperate with UNMIK, to a great extent, however, had been a one-way process. Cooperation should be re-established in the near future and a constructive policy of transparency by UNMIK should prevail.
Mr. ANNABI, taking the floor again to respond to questions, said the United Kingdom’s representative had asked about an issue related to parallel structures. As indicated in the briefing, those structures offering administrative and other services to Kosovo Serb residents continued to operate in certain parts of Kosovo with the support of Belgrade. Efforts to strengthen institutional links between Belgrade and those parallel structures had been most evident in the areas of health and education. Although Belgrade had agreed that those parallel structures should be abandoned, they still existed, including parallel courts. The UNMIK had been able to establish a minor offences court and a municipal court in the Mitrovica area, where it continued to provide the Kosovo Serbs with a number of administrative services.
He reiterated that Mr. Steiner had also appointed a multi-ethnic advisory board, which would act as a forum for cooperation among the communities. Its first meeting had been held on 30 May. The Kosovo Serbs had participated, but they had expressed reservations about the composition of the board, wrongly claiming that there had been some understanding that it would only include Kosovo Serb members. The UNMIK was in the process of developing a comprehensive action plan and policy to address the problem of the parallel structures, for which the cooperation of Belgrade would be essential.
The second question had related to UNMIK’s downsizing and how the Mission intended to take forward the shift from administrative to advisory functions, he recalled. UNMIK’s downsizing plans had to be seen in the context of its budget, which had been established at the level of $315 million. That planning was being developed in a manner that would ensure that, as powers were transferred, UNMIK retained an overall capacity in all areas to effectively exercise its authority under resolution 1244 (1999) and to discharge its powers and responsibilities in that regard.
As UNMIK gradually transferred the non-reserve competencies to the Provisional Institutions, it would retain sufficient staff to monitor and advise those Institutions and the municipal ones, as well as to intervene whenever that became necessary, he further explained. The UNMIK also had taken into account in its planning the fact that there would be an increased involvement of the Provisional Institutions and of the people of Kosovo in functions in reserved areas. That process would naturally involve a reallocation and reduction, in some cases, of UNMIK’s resources from the transferred areas to the reserved areas, in line with UNMIK’s budget.
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