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EULEX Kosovo

Question écrite de M. Lukas MANDL - Commission européenne

Question de M. Lukas MANDL,

Diffusée le 26 février 2018

Subject: EULEX Kosovo

The European Union Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo (short form: EULEX Kosovo) has recently been the subject of repeated negative news reports. Events were also made public which were and are likely to permanently tarnish the image of EULEX Kosovo, as regards its task of building up policing, justice and administration.

1) At what intervals, by what means and by which implementing entity is the EULEX Kosovo mission evaluated?

2) What repercussions will there be following on from the results of this evaluation in the Member States and in the Union?

3) In the Commission’s opinion, what changes suggest themselves after the results of this evaluation, both for the current EULEX Kosovo mission and for any future missions of this kind?

Réponse - Commission européenne

Diffusée le 25 juillet 2018

Answer given by Vice-President Mogherini on behalf of the European Commission (25 July 2018)

All Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) Missions, including EULEX Kosovo*, are subject to regular Strategic Reviews, either when a Mission is approaching the end of its current mandate, if the political/security situation merits one or upon Member States request. The European External Action Service (EEAS) is in the lead for Strategic Reviews, which are conducted in consultation with relevant EU stakeholders. The recommendations from a Review are submitted for endorsement to the Political and Security Committee (PSC).

Launched in 2008, the EU Rule of Law Mission to Kosovo (EULEX) has been reviewed four times (2011, 2013, 2015, and 2017). This has allowed for a gradual adaptation and downsizing of the mission, mirroring the changing environment, i.e. progress in reforms and in the EU relations with Kosovo (Stabilisation and Association Agreement and the EU-facilitated Dialogue for the normalisation of relations between Belgrade and Pristina). The downsizings and reconfigurations gradually shifted responsibilities to other EU entities.

The Council decided on 8 June 2018 to extend the Mission for two years until 14 June 2020. EULEX Kosovo with its refocused mandate will monitor selected cases and trials in Kosovo's criminal and civil justice institutions and will continue monitoring, mentoring and advising the Kosovo Correctional Service. It will also provide operational support to the implementation of EU- facilitated Dialogue agreements and will retain its role as second security responder. EULEX Kosovo will continue to support the relocated judicial proceedings in The Hague in line with relevant Kosovo legislation.

Six-Monthly and Intermediate Reports from civilian CSDP Missions to the PSC provide regular information for evaluating progress made in the mandate implementation. Informed by these reports, the PSC sets the strategic direction for civilian CSDP Missions.

In 2012, EU Assistance to Kosovo related to rule of law (including EULEX) was the subject of a special report by the European Court of Auditors. (1) In response, the Commission services and the EEAS took a range of measures to address the identified shortcomings. (2)

Regarding the ‘repeated negative news reports’ referred to by the Honourable Member, and which are understood to concern disciplinary matters, it is important to underline that such matters have been and are the subject of investigations under the applicable Code of Conduct and Discipline as adopted by the Council in 2016 (3). The EU follows a policy of zero tolerance towards allegations of inappropriate behaviour.

⋅1∙ European Court of Auditors, Special Report No 18/2012 — European Union Assistance to Kosovo related to the rule of law.

⋅2∙ Reply of the Commission and the European External Action Service, in European Court of Auditors, Special Report No 18/2012 — European Union Assistance to

Kosovo related to the rule of law (p. 49-62).

⋅3∙ Code of Conduct and Discipline for EU Civilian CSDP missions, 18 July 2016, 11961/16.

* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244/1999 and the International Court of Justice Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.

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