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H.Doc.108-34 BENCHMARKS FOR A SUSTAINABLE PEACE ...
108th Congress, 1st Session - - - - - - - - - - - - - House Document 108-33 KOSOVO BENCHMARKS __________ MESSAGE from THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES transmitting A REPORT ON THE PROGRESS MADE IN ACHIEVING THE MILITARILY SIGNIFICANT BENCHMARKS FOR CONDITIONS THAT WOULD ACHIEVE A SUSTAINABLE PEACE IN KOSOVO <GRAPHIC(S) NOT AVAILABLE IN TIFF FORMAT> February 5, 2003.--Message and accompanying papers referred to the Committees on International Relations, Armed Services, and Appropriations and ordered to be printed To the Congress of the United States: Pursuant to section 1212 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2001, Public Law 106-398, I hereby submit a report, prepared by my Administration, on the progress made in achieving the militarily significant benchmarks for conditions that would achieve a sustainable peace in Kosovo and ultimately allow for the withdrawal of the United States military presence in Kosovo. The term ``militarily significant'' relates to tasks and objectives significant from a military standpoint that once accomplished, would allow for withdrawal of military forces from Kosovo. In the establishment of the Kosovo benchmarks, four critical tasks for NATO forces were identified: military stability; public security; border/boundary issues; and war crimes/support to the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. Objectives for these tasks were drawn from United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244, the NATO Operations Plan, the Military Technical Agreement, and the Kosovo Liberation Army Undertaking. I anticipate that Kosovo Force--and U.S. participation in it--will gradually reduce in size as public security conditions improve and Kosovars assume increasing responsibility for their own self-government. George W. Bush. The White House, January 31, 2003. Kosovo Benchmarks INTRODUCTION Section 1212(a) of Public Law 106-398, The Floyd D. Spence, National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2001 (the Act), requires that ``The President shall develop militarily significant benchmarks for conditions that would achieve a sustainable peace in Kosovo and ultimately allow for the withdrawal of the U.S. military presence in Kosovo.'' Pursuant to Section 1212(b) of the Act, I am providing a report, prepared by my Administration, to Congress on progress in Kosovo toward achieving such militarily significant benchmarks. The report details developments from June 15 to December 31, 2002. The Foreign Ministers and Defense Ministers of NATO took important decisions during their Spring 2002 ministerials regarding a regional approach in the Balkans, including Kosovo. As a result of those decisions, the Kosovo Force (KFOR) was scheduled to be reduced from 36,000 as of June 2002 to 32,000 by December 2002, and 29,400 by June 2003. In fact, KFOR actual troop strength has already dropped below the level of committed troop contributions. More recently, NATO Heads of State noted the Joint Operations Area Implementation Update at the Prague Summit in November 2002, and called for exploration of options for further rationalization and force restructuring. BACKGROUND The benchmarks measure progress in achieving a sustainable peace in Kosovo. The objectives and tasks were drawn from several important documents: the NATO Operation Plan for Kosovo (OPLAN 10413); United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1244 (1999); the Military Technical Agreement (MTA) between KFOR and the Governments of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) and the Republic of Serbia; and the Undertaking of Demilitarization and Transformation of the Kosovo Liberation Army (the Undertaking). Significant progress has been made in Kosovo since the establishment of KFOR and the U.N. Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK). KFOR has completed several military tasks specified in OPLAN 10413 and UNSCR 1244. The remaining tasks are of a continuous or recurring nature and provide for the unimpeded operation of UNMIK, freedom of movement for minorities, and the safe return of displaced persons and refugees. KFOR efforts have helped UNMIK to make substantial progress in implementing UNSCR 1244: reconstruction is well- advanced; free and fair elections held three times; more than 5,200 multi-ethnic Kosovo police trained and deployed; and a new constitutional framework for provisional self-government promulgated. Security challenges remain in the form of ethnically oriented, politically extreme, and criminally motivated armed groups who threaten to compromise these accomplishments, both through their actions in Kosovo and to a lesser extent in southern Serbia and Macedonia. Rather than Yugoslav and Serbian forces posing a continued risk, these internal factors are now the primary threat to public security within Kosovo. KFOR and UNMIK will have to continue to cooperate over the coming months to deter and disrupt the activities of these groups, and continue to ensure stability in Kosovo and, by extension, the surrounding region. Increased refugee and Internally Displaced Persons returns, problems with the continued ethnic division of North Mitrovica, potential International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) indictments, arrests of high- profile Kosovar political or criminal figures, demarcation of the Kosovo-Macedonia border, and decentralization of political power will present additional challenges. Kosovo's greatest challenge now is the development of governmental, economic, social, and security infrastructures capable of providing a safe, secure, and prosperous environment for all its inhabitants. PROGRESS REVIEW The benchmarks depict progress on four overarching tasks and related objectives that will allow for the withdrawal of U.S. military forces from Kosovo. They are: Military Stability; Public Security; Border and Boundary Issues; and War Crimes. 1. Task: Military stability Objectives: <bullet> Withdrawal of Yugoslav and Serbian Security Forces from Kosovo. <bullet> Demilitarization of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) and other armed Kosovar-Albanian groups. <bullet> Deterrence of renewed hostilities, maintenance and, where necessary, enforcement of the cease-fire. Progress on these objectives and the benchmarks associated with them has been very good. FRY forces have withdrawn from Kosovo and have adhered to all military agreements, the KLA has been demilitarized and there are no ongoing hostilities in Kosovo. Benchmarks: a. The cease-fire has been maintained and FRY has adhered to the MTA The rampant ethnic cleansing and the killing of spring 1999 is now history and neither party to the conflict has resumed military action. FRY forces left Kosovo as called for in the MTA. In 2001 and 2002, NATO oversaw reductions in the Air Safety Zone (ASZ); in 2001 FRY forces returned to the Ground Safety Zone (GSZ) in southern Serbia as part of a political agreement to end fighting between government forces and ethnic Albanian groups in southern Serbia. This benchmark is essentially accomplished although both the ASZ and GSZ remain under KFOR authority. b. KLA has been demilitarized and transformed in compliance with the undertaking The KLA ceased to exist on September 20, 1999. Many former KLA members entered the Kosovo Protection Corps (KPC), now a civil emergency response force, or the Kosovo Police Service (KPS). This benchmark is essentially accomplished. c. Establishment of the KPC and low incidence of officer non-compliance The KPC was created in 1999 out of demobilized KLA troops. UNMIK Regulation 1999/8 authorized the KPC to engage in disaster response, search and rescue, and infrastructure rebuilding activities. The KPC is permitted no role in law enforcement, security, or defense. KFOR and UNMIK jointly supervise the KPC. Authorized strength is 5,000 members; by the end of 2002 just under 2,000 had moved from active to reserve status. Ten percent of the KPC positions are reserved for ethnic minorities, although to date only some 100 Serbs and other minorities have joined. In 2002 UNMIK budgeted 11.16 million for KPC salaries, operating expenses, and capital outlays. The United States has funded additional training for first aid, land navigation, fire fighting, and other activities. A goal of the United States and UNMIK for 2003 is to further reform the KPC through functional and structural changes. One of the primary purposes for the establishment of the KPC was to provide transparency to the process of demilitarizing the KLA. While some individual members of the KPC are involved in supporting extremism and organized crime, since the KPC was established, documented non-compliance has declined from 35 incidents per month to as few as 4 per month, to include such incidents as illegal possession of weapons and ammunition and celebratory gunfire. Though additional work remains to be done to further professionalize the KPC as a civilian organization and broaden its ethnic and gender base, this benchmark is essentially accomplished. d. FRY and Kosovars participate in the Joint Implementation Commission The Joint Implementation Commission (JIC) was established in accordance with the MTA and given two key mandates: ensure compliance with the MTA; and demilitarize the KLA. JICs have been established at two echelons--at KFOR Headquarters and at each of the five Multinational Brigades (MNBs). Meetings between KFOR, Yugoslav Army (VJ), FRY Ministry of Interior Police (MUP), UNMIK CIVPOL, FRY JIC, International Committee for the Red Cross and Border Police occur on a regular basis. Agendas range from administrative issues such as ID cards to security issues such as VJ/MUP manned contact points on/near the administrative boundary. The JICs have facilitated training for the KPC in first aid, fire fighting, land navigation, identification of unexploded ordnance, construction, and humanitarian relief. This benchmark is essentially accomplished. e. End of offensive activities by armed groups Large armed groups are no longer active in Kosovo proper, but ethnic Albanian armed groups (EAAGs) in southern Serbia and in Macedonia have used Kosovo as a supply route and base for recruiting and fundraising. KFOR and UNMIK police have been active in apprehending members of these groups and their supporters, and the United States Government has repeatedly reminded Kosovo's political leaders and the KPC that any support for the insurgents' activities is notacceptable. This benchmark is essentially accomplished although it requires continued monitoring. 2. Task: Public security Objectives: <bullet> Establishment and maintenance of a secure environment for the operation of UNMIK, the delivery of humanitarian aid, and the safe return of a considerably increased number of refugees and displaced persons to their homes in 2003. <bullet> Ensure protection and freedom of movement for KFOR, UNMIK, and other International Organizations (IOs). <bullet> Transfer responsibility for public safety and order when either UNMIK or newly elected Kosovar authorities can take responsibility for this function. Significant progress has been achieved toward the benchmarks related to these objectives, but continued progress in the area of public security will require a strong continued commitment by the international community to provide resources for rule of law and other security programs. Benchmarks: a. UNMIK safely conducts its mission UNMIK has regional administrations in each KFOR MNB, headed by an international administrator and staffed by a mixture of international and local staff. Additionally, there are UNMIK offices in each of Kosovo's 30 municipalities. UNMIK success stories include promulgation of the Constitutional Framework, holding of municipal elections twice and province-wide elections once, registration of and distribution of ID cards to nearly one million Kosovars, and issuance of over 345,000 travel documents recognized in 29 countries. In all UNMIK endeavors (except North Mitrovica)--from travel to governance-- UNMIK has been able to safely conduct its mission. b. IOs travel without disruption of their activities Travel in Kosovo by IOs is generally unimpeded. Serb residents in northern Kosovo sporadically established roadblocks in Serb majority areas, but alternative routes were available to IOs with little or no disruption of their activities. This benchmark is essentially accomplished. C. Humanitarian relief delivered Humanitarian relief was one of the original UNMIK pillars, led by the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), but as humanitarian needs abated, the UNMIK humanitarian pillar ceased operations in June 2000. UNMIK has institutionalized the delivery of goods and services to Kosovo's neediest populations through a system of Centers for Social Work. These centers ensure poor, isolated and/or minority communities have the goods and services they require. This benchmark is essentially accomplished. d. Initial demining efforts accomplished and responsibility transferred to requisite civilian authorities Since June 1999, over 20,000 mines, 13,000 items of unexploded ordnance (OXO), and 6,700 cluster bomb units (CBU) have been located and destroyed. Over 25 million square meters of land have been cleared and returned to use. There have been 16 different international demining organizations involved in mine awareness activities; and mine awareness has been incorporated into the Kosovo school system curriculum. While KFOR's mandate is concerned only with minefields that impede its mission, KFOR soldiers continue to mark newly discovered minefields for demining by accredited civilian agencies. Also,
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