Tuesday, 18 October 2005

UNMIK's position on Kosova/Kosovo's independence

Soren Jessen-Peterson, Special Representative of the Secretary General (SRSG) for and head of the United Nations Mission In Kosovo (UNMIK), stated that "there is no reason" for him to oppose the Kosova/Kosovo Parliament's independence declaration.

On the 17th of October 2005, B92 reported that Jessen-Peterson had said that control of Kosovo's status process was "parliament's responsibility" and that he "trust[ed] that the president, the presidency and the parliament will give proper guidance to the team".

Though MPs have approved the draft, Jessen-Peterson did caution that "we shall have to see the text first" and some have suggested that it was Jessen-Peterson who convinced the parliament to delay its publication; still, he did go on to say, "I don't see why I should oppose it, there is no reason for that".

Some have questioned why another declaration was made, implying that there was some mysterious ulterior motive aside from pressuring the international community to recognise Kosovans' legal right to self-determination.

Others, such as the Serbian Government Coordinating Centre for Kosovo and Metohija's former president, Nebojsa Covic, have accepted that the Union of Serbia and Montenegro can't stop the Kosovo Parliament from making that declaration, but as he said, they "can ask... UNMIK, OSCE and KFOR, not to permit" what he termed, "such provocations".

Kai Eide, Special Envoy of the Secretary General to Kosovo, recommended status - and, realistically, independence - talks, despite - and I suspect because - the police and judiciary are "fragile" and the outlook for a multiethnic society is "grim".

Vojislav Kostunica, President of Serbia and Montenegro, stated that "the precondition for talks... is full implementation [of Kosovo standards]", contrarily, Ibrahim Rugova argued that the "only platform for the status talks is the independence [of Kosovo]".

Sadly, there will not be "standards before status", as the UN had expected - and there must be standards, so there must be status - Kosovo must have its independence, or in 2006, the "grim" situation will worsen, resembling the violence of March 2004, when nineteen were killed and more than a thousand injured in riots.

There is currently a slogan that runs, "independence for Kosova [is] the only way to peace in the Balkans", but those who use it must recognise that peace is the only way to independence for Kosovo and that, even if conditional independence is granted, the international administration, military and security will remain for as long as the racist violence continues.

Those ethnic Albanian extremists who commit that violence are not freedom fighters or defenders of their communities but terrorists, just as the ethnic Serb extremists were before them, attacking civilians to achieve political change. On a more practical note, because they are the ones preventing the achievement of standards, they are the ones preventing the achievement of status.

If status were achieved, those committing the violence wouldn't be able to maintain the little community support that they need and that they get from the theoretical possibility of the return of Serbian control. If status were achieved and if those committing that violence were the mafia that some of those I talked to suggested they were, then they wouldn't be able to continue with either the power or the impunity that they currently enjoy.

No comments:

Post a Comment