SECURITY COUNCIL, IN PRESIDENTIAL STATEMENT, EXPRESSES SUPPORT FOR ‘STANDARDS FOR KOSOVO’, WELCOMES LAUNCH OF REVIEW MECHANISM

12 December 2003
SC/7951

SECURITY COUNCIL, IN PRESIDENTIAL STATEMENT, EXPRESSES SUPPORT FOR ‘STANDARDS FOR KOSOVO’, WELCOMES LAUNCH OF REVIEW MECHANISM

12/12/2003
Press ReleaseSC/7951

Security Council

4880th Meeting (PM)

SECURITY COUNCIL, IN PRESIDENTIAL STATEMENT, EXPRESSES SUPPORT FOR ‘STANDARDS

FOR KOSOVO’, WELCOMES LAUNCH OF REVIEW MECHANISM

The Security Council this afternoon expressed support for the “Standards for Kosovo”, presented on 10 December in Pristina, after hearing a briefing yesterday from Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Jean-Marie Guéhenno.

The 10—page standards document sets out point-by-point the meaning of the standards, which had been set to prepare Kosovo for final status.  Under the “standards before status” policy, designed for Kosovo (Serbia and Montenegro) and endorsed by the Council in application of its resolution 1244 (1999), Provisional Institutions for Self-Government have to achieve certain standards before final status of Kosovo can be addressed.  The eight standards under the policy are:  functioning democratic institutions; rule of law; freedom of movement; returns and reintegration; economy; property rights; dialogue with Belgrade; and the Kosovo Protection Corps.

In a Statement read by Council President Stefan Tafrov (Bulgaria), the Council also welcomed the launching of a review mechanism on 5 November in Pristina, which would give new momentum to the implementation of the “standards before status” policy.  It supported the prospect of a comprehensive review of progress made by the Provisional Institutions of Self-government in meeting the standards.  A first opportunity for such a comprehensive review should occur around mid-2005.

The Council urged the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government to participate fully and constructively in the working groups within the framework of the direct dialogue with Belgrade on practical issues of mutual interest and to demonstrate their commitment to the process. [In a 30 October Council briefing, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative, Harri Holkeri, had said that direct talks between Pristina and Belgrade had started on 14 October in Vienna, Austria, but that key figures had not participated.  On the Kosovo side, four working groups with multi-ethnic representation must be promptly established and begin technical talks in Belgrade and Pristina.]

The Council reiterated the primacy of the regulations promulgated by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and subsidiary instruments as the law applicable in Kosovo.

The meeting began at 1:33 p.m. and adjourned at 1:40 p.m.

Presidential Statement

The full text of Presidential Statement S/PRST/2003/26 reads as follows:

“The Security Council welcomes the launching of a review mechanism, under the auspices of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, as presented on 5 November in Pristina and Belgrade, on the initiative of the Contact Group (France, Germany, Italy, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the United States of America, with representatives from the European Union), giving new momentum to the implementation of the “standards before status” policy that was designed for Kosovo (Serbia and Montenegro), and endorsed by this Council in application of its resolution 1244 (1999).

“The Security Council recalls the eight standards, namely:  functioning democratic institutions; rule of law; freedom of movement; returns and reintegration; economy; property rights; dialogue with Belgrade; and the Kosovo Protection Corps.  The Council in this respect urges the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government to participate fully and constructively in the working groups within the framework of the direct dialogue with Belgrade on practical issues of mutual interest, to demonstrate their commitment to the process.

“The Security Council supports the “Standards for Kosovo” presented on 10 December 2003.  The Council awaits an implementation plan, to be finalized by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General in his continuing consultation with the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government, and other relevant parties as appropriate, to be submitted to the Council.  The plan should serve as a basis for the assessment of the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government’s progress in meeting the standards.

“The Security Council takes note that the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, within his authority as set out in resolution 1244 (1999), inter alia, in the context of the review mechanism, will continue to consult closely with interested parties, in particular the Contact Group.  The Council reaffirms its intention to continue to consider the regular reports of the Secretary-General, including an assessment from the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, as to the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government’s progress towards meeting the standards.  The Council takes note that the Contact Group intends to make a substantive contribution to the regular reviews and to submit its assessments to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General.

“The Security Council supports the prospect of a comprehensive review of the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government’s progress in meeting the standards.  The Council notes that, depending on progress made as assessed during the periodical review, a first opportunity for such a comprehensive review should occur around mid-2005.  Reaffirming the “standards before status” policy, the Council stresses that further advancement towards a process to determine future status of Kosovo in accordance with resolution 1244 (1999) will depend on the positive outcome of this comprehensive review.  The Council reiterates the primacy of the regulations promulgated by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and subsidiary instruments as the law applicable in Kosovo.

“The Security Council reaffirms its full support to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General Holkeri and calls on the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government of Kosovo and all concerned to cooperate fully with him.”

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For information media. Not an official record.