Thursday, September 13, 2012

European Union Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo ( EULEX)

The European Union Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo, EULEX Kosovo, is a deployment of European Union (EU) police and civilian resources to Kosovo. This Common Security and Defence Policy mission is the international civil presence in Kosovo operating under the umbrella of the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) established by United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244. Serbia and a number of countries had initially strictly objected to the mission and supported UNMIK, demanding approval by the United Nations Security Council, which was rendered in late 2008.[1] After signing a 5-point plan between Serbia and the UN, the UN SC approved the addition of the EULEX as an assistance mission subjected to the UNMIK, rather than outright replacing it, which would be technical in essence and not address the Kosovo status question, also rejected the Ahtisaari plan which the EULEX had originally supported. The mission includes around 3,200 police and judicial personnel (1,950 international, 1,250 local),[2] and began a four month deployment process on 16 February 2008.[3][4] The mission intends to remain in Kosovo until at least June 2012.[5]

 Composition and deployment

A 1,800 to 1,900 strong mission was approved by the European Council on 14 December 2007. This was later increased to 2,000 personnel due to an increase in expected instability due to a lack of an agreement with Serbia.[3] It consists of police officers (including four anti-riot units[6]), prosecutors and judges - hence focusing on issues on the rule of law, including democratic standards. The size of the mission means Kosovo is home to the largest number of EU civil servants outside of Brussels.[7] Chief of the mission is French General Xavier Bout de Marnhac, who replaced Yves de Kermabon on 15 October 2010. He is accountable to the European Union member states.

The final decision on the mission was planned to be taken on 28 January 2008.[8] This was postponed due to concerns over possible negative effects on the second round of the presidential election in Serbia on 3 February 2008 and the possible signing of the Stabilization and Association Agreement with Serbia on that date.[9] The officially voiced reason for the postponement is the lack of a legal basis (through a UNSC resolution or something similar) for the mission.[10] A Joint Action was approved on 4 February 2008 and the final decision was made on 16 February 2008.[11][12][13] A joint action is a method of implementing the Common Foreign and Security Policy, and are binding on member states.[14]

Spain does not take part in EULEX mission, since legal questions over how it replaces the UN administration have not been answered. In June 2008, Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Ángel Moratinos told a meeting of European Union Foreign Ministers in Slovenia that Spain will not send its contingent to the EULEX mission until there has been a formal transfer of powers from the United Nations.[15]

Apart from EU members, third parties Croatia, Turkey, Switzerland, Norway, Canada and the United States also take part.[16]
( Wikipedia)

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