The UN Interim Administration Mission for Kosovo (UNMIK) was authorized
in June 1999 by the Security Council to
control all legislative, judicial, economic, and civilian administrative
matters until the future status of Kosovo is resolved. Dr. Bernard
Kouchner, former Minister of Health for France, leads this task,
unprecedented in UN history for its scope and complexity. Whether
UNMIK has succeeded depends upon whom you ask.
Crime remains a major problem in Kosovo. All
ethnic groups cannot live together securely, with recent attacks
by Albanians on minority Serb and Roma groups. UNMIK is recruiting
and training local police officers for an independent professional
Kosovo Police Service, which has still not reached its targeted
Leon Striggot, Chief of UNMIK Police, Pristina
Regional Operations, feels the UN doesnt have direction or
ability to deal with rampant corruption. Albanian thugs (from
Albania) are ruining everything
Kosovars want the police to
but payoffs will get you anything here
should be given back to KFOR.
Fellow UNMIK worker Joann Kingsley agrees. There
is no rule of law here, no one enforces it. Am I helping or
hurting? I ask myself. I cant trust anyone here.
She had no support from UNMIK police when she was harassed by Serb
extremists in Mitrovica. But she also feels that Serbs in the north
are neglected by UNMIK. For example, there are no UN-sponsored
landmine awareness programs for Serbs there.
In the summer of 2000, UNMIK administered an
elaborate process to register all Kosovars for their first democratic
municipal elections in October 2000. With much prodding, one million
Albanians participated, but less than one thousand Serbs registered,
mainly in the northern towns of Zvecan, Zubin Potok, and Leposavic.
Serbs who registered were threatened loss of their pensions and
paychecks by Belgrade. No Serb political parties registered for
The first Serb to register, Vladimir from Zvecan,
did so because it is important to know who lives here
I am a tough guy.