1. We, a Troika of representatives from the European Union, the United States and Russia, have spent the last four months conducting negotiations between Belgrade and Pristina on the future status of Kosovo. Our objective was to facilitate an agreement between the parties. The negotiations were conducted within the framework of UN Security Council resolution 1244 (1999) and the “Guiding Principles” of the Contact Group (cf. Annexes 1 and 2). In the course of our work, the parties discussed a wide range of options, such as full independence, supervised independence, territorial partition, substantial autonomy, confederal arrangements and even a status silent “agreement to disagree.”
the best interests of both parties.
3. A political process to determine the future status of Kosovo, the last major issue related to Yugoslavia’s collapse, has been underway for over two years. The United Nations Secretary General appointed Martti Ahtisaari as his Special Envoy in November 2005 to undertake the future status process envisioned in UN Security Council resolution 1244 (1999). After fifteen months of UN-sponsored negotiations, President Ahtisaari prepared a Comprehensive Proposal for the Kosovo Status Settlement, which included measures to protect Kosovo’s non-Albanian communities, and a recommendation that Kosovo should become independent subject to a period of international supervision. Pristina accepted the Ahtisaari Settlement in its entirety;
Belgrade rejected it.
4. After a period of discussions in the UN Security Council, the Contact Group (France, Germany, Italy, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States) proposed that a “Troika” of officials from the EU, the United States and Russia undertake yet another period of negotiations with the goal of achieving a negotiated agreement. On August 1, 2007, the UN Secretary General welcomed this initiative, restated his belief that the status quo was unsustainable and requested a report from the Contact Group on these efforts by December 10, 2007. The United Nations Office of the Special Envoy for the Kosovo Future Status Process (UNOSEK) would be associated with the process by standing ready to provide information and clarification on request (cf. Annex 3).
The Troika’s Mission
5. Upon our appointment as Troika representatives, we vowed to “leave no stone unturned” in
the search for a mutually acceptable outcome. In pursuit of this goal, we explained to the parties the principles that would guide our work. First, we reaffirmed that UN Security Council Resolution 1244 (1999) and the November 2005 “Guiding Principles” of the Contact Group would continue to be our operating framework. Second, we noted that while the Ahtisaari Settlement was still on the table, we would be prepared to endorse any agreement the parties might be able to reach. Both sides were repeatedly reminded of their responsibility for success or failure of the process.
6. We also explained that the Troika had no intention of imposing a solution. Instead, the burden was on each party to convince the other side of the merits of its position. Although our role would be primarily to facilitate direct dialogue, we also intended to take an active role in Working Schedule
identifying areas of possible compromise.
7. During the four months of our mandate, we undertook an intense schedule of meetings with the parties (cf. Annex 4). This schedule was comprised of ten sessions, six of which consisted of face-to-face dialogue, including a final intensive three-day conference in Baden, Austria, as well as two trips to the region. During the process, Belgrade was represented by President Boris Tadić, Prime Minister Vojislav Koštunica, Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremić and Minister for Kosovo Slobodan Samardzić. Pristina was represented by the “Team of Unity” composed of President Fatmir Sejdiu, Prime Minister Agim Çeku, President of the Assembly Kolë Berisha, Hashim Thaçi and Veton Surroi. The Troika appreciated the fact that both delegations were represented at the highest possible level, underlining the importance they attached to the process. In addition to the joint sessions we arranged separate meetings with the parties in order to consult with them individually. Our sessions were long and often difficult, as we confronted a legacy of mutual mistrust and sense of historical grievance about the conflicts of the 1990s. The Contact Group supported our work, and its foreign ministers urged the parties to approach the negotiations with “creativity, boldness and in a spirit of compromise” (cf. Annex 5). We also sought, and received, pledges from the parties that neither would engage in provocative acts or statements during the process (cf. Annexes 6 and 7).
8. As we began our work, we first explored the well-established positions of each side. Pristina restated its preference for Kosovo’s supervised independence and reconfirmed its acceptance of the Ahtisaari proposal. Belgrade rejected the Ahtisaari proposal and restated its preference that Kosovo be autonomous within Serbia. As a result, there was no discussion of the Ahtisaari proposal nor any discussion that it should be modified. Both sides employed historical, functional, legal and practical arguments to support their preferred outcome. Belgrade elaborated its model of substantial autonomy to enhance the powers of an autonomous Kosovo and reduce those that it would reserve. It asserted that there would be no return to the pre-March 1999 situation. Pristina presented a draft “Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation,” which describes how Kosovo and Serbia, as independent states, could cooperate on issues of mutual concern, establish common bodies, enhance their commitment to multi-ethnicity and support each other’s Euro-Atlantic aspirations.
9. Despite our repeated call for fresh ideas and a spirit of compromise, neither side was able to convince the other to accept its preferred outcome. Encouraged by the Contact Group’s Ministerial Statement of September 27 (cf. Annex 4), we undertook a more active approach. We developed our assessment in the form of the “Fourteen Points” of possible overlap in the parties’ positions (cf. Annex 8, “Troika Assessment of Negotiations: Principal Conclusions”). The parties responded to these points, without accepting them fully.
10. Under our guidance, the parties reviewed outcomes ranging from independence to autonomy, as well as alternate models such as confederal arrangements, and even a model based on an “agreement to disagree” in which neither party would be expected to renounce its position but would nonetheless pursue practical arrangements designed to facilitate cooperation and consultation between them. Other international models, such as Hong Kong, the Åland Islands and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), were discussed.
While it was broached, we did not dwell on the option of territorial partition, which was deemed unacceptable by both the parties and the Contact Group. None of these models proved to be an adequate basis for compromise. We concluded face-to-face negotiations between the parties at a high-level conference in Baden, Austria, during November 26-28, where we again encouraged both sides to find a way out of the deadlock.
11. Throughout the negotiations both parties were fully engaged. After 120 days of intensive negotiations, however, the parties were unable to reach an agreement on Kosovo’s status. Neither side was willing to yield on the basic question of sovereignty.
12. Nevertheless, despite this fundamental difference on status, which the Troika was unable to bridge, we believe this process served a useful purpose. We gave the parties an opportunity to find a solution to their differences. Under our auspices, the parties engaged in the most sustained and intense high-level direct dialogue since hostilities ended in Kosovo in 1999. Through this process, the parties discovered areas where their interests aligned. The parties also agreed on the need to promote and protect multi-ethnic societies and address difficult issues holding back reconciliation, particularly the fate of missing persons and the return of displaced persons. Perhaps most important, Belgrade and Pristina reaffirmed the centrality of their European perspective to their future relations, with both sides restating their desire to seek a future under the common roof of the European Union.
13. While differences between the parties remain unchanged, the Troika has nevertheless been able to extract important commitments from the parties. In particular, both parties have pledged to refrain from actions that might jeopardize the security situation in Kosovo or elsewhere and not use violence, threats or intimidation (cf. Annex 9). They made these commitments without prejudice to their positions on status. Both parties must be reminded that their failure to live up to these commitments will affect the achievement of the European future that they both seek.
14. We note that Kosovo and Serbia will continue to be tied together due to the special nature of
their relationship, especially in its historical, human, geographical, economical and cultural dimensions. As noted by Contact Group Ministers at their meeting in New York on 27 September, the resolution of Kosovo’s status is crucial to the stability and security of the Western Balkans and Europe as a whole. We believe the maintenance of peace in the region and the avoidance of violence is of paramount importance and therefore look to the parties to stand by their commitments. We, furthermore, strongly believe that the settlement of Kosovo’s status would contribute to the fulfilment of the European aspirations of both parties.
A) Background Documents
1)UN Security Council resolution 1244 (1999)
2)“Guiding Principles” of the Contact Group (November 2005)
B) Troika Documents
3)UN Secretary-General's statement on the new period of engagement on Kosovo (August 1, 2007)
5)Statement on Kosovo by Contact Group Ministers (September 27, 2007)
6)Vienna Non-Paper (August 30, 2007)
7)New York Declaration (September 28, 2007)
8)Troika Assessment of Negotiations: Principal Conclusions
9)Troika-Communiqué (Baden, November 28, 2007)
Annex 1: UN Security Council resolution 1244 (1999)
The Security Council,
Bearing in mind the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, and the primary responsibility of the Security Council for the maintenance of international peace and security,
Recalling its resolutions 1160 (1998) of 31 March 1998, 1199 (1998) of 23 September 1998, 1203 (1998) of 24 October 1998 and 1239 (1999) of 14 May 1999,
Regretting that there has not been full compliance with the requirements of these resolutions,
Determined to resolve the grave humanitarian situation in Kosovo, Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and to provide for the safe and free return of all refugees and displaced persons to their homes,
Condemning all acts of violence against the Kosovo population as well as all terrorist acts by any
Recalling the statement made by the Secretary-General on 9 April 1999, expressing concern at the humanitarian tragedy taking place in Kosovo,
Reaffirming the right of all refugees and displaced persons to return to their homes in safety,
Recalling the jurisdiction and the mandate of the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia,
Welcoming the general principles on a political solution to the Kosovo crisis adopted on 6 May 1999 (S/1999/516, annex 1 to this resolution) and welcoming also the acceptance by the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia of the principles set forth in points 1 to 9 of the paper presented in Belgrade on 2 June 1999 (S/1999/649, annex 2 to this resolution), and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia's agreement to that paper,
Reaffirming the commitment of all Member States to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of
the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the other States of the region, as set out in the Helsinki Final Act and annex 2,
Reaffirming the call in previous resolutions for substantial autonomy and meaningful self-administration for Kosovo,
Determining that the situation in the region continues to constitute a threat to international peace and security,
Determined to ensure the safety and security of international personnel and the implementation by all concerned of their responsibilities under the present resolution, and acting for these purposes under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations,
1. Decides that a political solution to the Kosovo crisis shall be based on the general principles in annex 1 and as further elaborated in the principles and other required elements in annex 2;
2. Welcomes the acceptance by the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia of the principles and other required elements referred to in paragraph 1 above, and demands the full cooperation of
the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in their rapid implementation;
3. Demands in particular that the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia put an immediate and verifiable end to violence and repression in Kosovo, and begin and complete verifiable phased withdrawal from Kosovo of all military, police and paramilitary forces according to a rapid timetable, with which the deployment of the international security presence in Kosovo will be synchronized;
4. Confirms that after the withdrawal an agreed number of Yugoslav and Serb military and police personnel will be permitted to return to Kosovo to perform the functions in accordance with annex 2;
5. Decides on the deployment in Kosovo, under United Nations auspices, of international civil and security presences, with appropriate equipment and personnel as required, and welcomes the agreement of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia to such presences;
6. Requests the Secretary-General to appoint, in consultation with the Security Council, a
Special Representative to control the implementation of the international civil presence, and further requests the Secretary-General to instruct his Special Representative to coordinate closely with the international security presence to ensure that both presences operate towards the same goals and in a mutually supportive manner;
7. Authorizes Member States and relevant international organizations to establish the international security presence in Kosovo as set out in point 4 of annex 2 with all necessary means to fulfil its responsibilities under paragraph 9 below;
8. Affirms the need for the rapid early deployment of effective international civil and security presences to Kosovo, and demands that the parties cooperate fully in their deployment;
9. Decides that the responsibilities of the international security presence to be deployed and acting in Kosovo will include:
a. Deterring renewed hostilities, maintaining and where necessary enforcing a ceasefire, and ensuring the withdrawal and preventing the return into Kosovo of Federal and Republic military, police and paramilitary forces, except as provided in point 6 of annex 2;
b. Demilitarizing the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) and other armed Kosovo Albanian groups as required in paragraph 15 below;
c. Establishing a secure environment in which refugees and displaced persons can return home in safety, the international civil presence can operate, a transitional administration can be established, and humanitarian aid can be delivered;
d. Ensuring public safety and order until the international civil presence can take responsibility for this task;
e. Supervising demining until the international civil presence can, as appropriate, take over responsibility for this task;
f. Supporting, as appropriate, and coordinating closely with the work of the
international civil presence;
g. Conducting border monitoring duties as required;
h. Ensuring the protection and freedom of movement of itself, the international civil presence, and other international organizations;
10. Authorizes the Secretary-General, with the assistance of relevant international organizations, to establish an international civil presence in Kosovo in order to provide an interim administration for Kosovo under which the people of Kosovo can enjoy substantial autonomy within the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and which will provide transitional administration while establishing and overseeing the development of provisional democratic self-governing institutions to ensure conditions for a peaceful and normal life for all inhabitants of Kosovo;
11. Decides that the main responsibilities of the international civil presence will include:
a. Promoting the establishment, pending a final settlement, of substantial autonomy
and self-government in Kosovo, taking full account of annex 2 and of the Rambouillet accords (S/1999/648);
b. Performing basic civilian administrative functions where and as long as required;
c. Organizing and overseeing the development of provisional institutions for democratic and autonomous self-government pending a political settlement, including the holding of elections;
d. Transferring, as these institutions are established, its administrative responsibilities while overseeing and supporting the consolidation of Kosovo's local provisional institutions and other peace-building activities;
e. Facilitating a political process designed to determine Kosovo's future status, taking
into account the Rambouillet accords (S/1999/648);
f. In a final stage, overseeing the transfer of authority from Kosovo's provisional institutions to institutions established under a political settlement;
g. Supporting the reconstruction of key infrastructure and other economic reconstruction;
h. Supporting, in coordination with international humanitarian organizations, humanitarian and disaster relief aid;
i. Maintaining civil law and order, including establishing local police forces and meanwhile through the deployment of international police personnel to serve in Kosovo;
j. Protecting and promoting human rights;
k. Assuring the safe and unimpeded return of all refugees and displaced persons to
their homes in Kosovo;
12. Emphasizes the need for coordinated humanitarian relief operations, and for the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia to allow unimpeded access to Kosovo by humanitarian aid organizations and to cooperate with such organizations so as to ensure the fast and effective delivery of international aid;
13. Encourages all Member States and international organizations to contribute to economic and social reconstruction as well as to the safe return of refugees and displaced persons, and emphasizes in this context the importance of convening an international donors' conference, particularly for the purposes set out in paragraph 11 (g) above, at the earliest possible date;
14. Demands full cooperation by all concerned, including the international security presence, with the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia;
15. Demands that the KLA and other armed Kosovo Albanian groups end immediately all offensive actions and comply with the requirements for demilitarization as laid down by the head of the international security presence in consultation with the Special Representative of the Secretary-General;
16. Decides that the prohibitions imposed by paragraph 8 of resolution 1160 (1998) shall not apply to arms and related matériel for the use of the international civil and security presences;
17. Welcomes the work in hand in the European Union and other international organizations
to develop a comprehensive approach to the economic development and stabilization of the region affected by the Kosovo crisis, including the implementation of a Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe with broad international participation in order to further the promotion of democracy, economic prosperity, stability and regional cooperation;
18. Demands that all States in the region cooperate fully in the implementation of all aspects of this resolution;
19. Decides that the international civil and security presences are established for an initial period of 12 months, to continue thereafter unless the Security Council decides otherwise;
20. Requests the Secretary-General to report to the Council at regular intervals on the implementation of this resolution, including reports from the leaderships of the international civil and security presences, the first reports to be submitted within 30
days of the adoption of this resolution;
21. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.
Statement by the Chairman
conclusion of the meeting of the G-8
held at the Petersberg
Centre on 6
· Immediate and verifiable end of violence and repression in Kosovo;
· Withdrawal from Kosovo of military, police and paramilitary forces;
· Deployment in Kosovo of effective international civil and security presences, endorsed
and adopted by the United Nations, capable of guaranteeing the achievement of the common objectives;
Establishment of an interim administration for Kosovo to be decided by the Security Council of the United Nations to ensure conditions for a peaceful and normal life for all
inhabitants in Kosovo;
The safe and free return of all refugees and displaced persons and unimpeded access to Kosovo by humanitarian aid organizations;
· A political process towards the establishment of an interim political framework agreement providing for a substantial self-government for Kosovo, taking full account of the Rambouillet accords and the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the other countries of the region, and the demilitarization of the KLA; Comprehensive approach to the economic development and stabilization of the crisis region.
Agreement should be reached on the following principles to move towards a resolution of the Kosovo crisis:
1. An immediate and verifiable end of violence and repression in Kosovo.
2. Verifiable withdrawal from Kosovo of all military, police and paramilitary forces
according to a rapid timetable.
3. Deployment in Kosovo under United Nations auspices of effective international civil and
security presences, acting as may be decided under Chapter VII of the Charter, capable of guaranteeing the achievement of common objectives.
4. The international security presence with substantial North Atlantic Treaty Organization
participation must be deployed under unified command and control and authorized to establish a safe environment for all people in Kosovo and to facilitate the safe return to
their homes of all displaced persons and refugees.
5. Establishment of an interim administration for Kosovo as a part of the international civil
presence under which the people of Kosovo can enjoy substantial autonomy within the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, to be decided by the Security Council of the United Nations. The interim administration to provide transitional administration while establishing and overseeing the development of provisional democratic self-governing institutions to ensure conditions for a peaceful and normal life for all inhabitants in Kosovo.
6. After withdrawal, an agreed number of Yugoslav and Serbian personnel will be permitted
to return to perform the following functions:
o Liaison with the international civil mission and the international security presence;
o Marking/clearing minefields;
o Maintaining a presence at Serb patrimonial sites;
o Maintaining a presence at key border crossings.
7. Safe and free return of all refugees and displaced persons under the supervision of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and unimpeded access to Kosovo by humanitarian aid organizations.
8. A political process towards the establishment of an interim political framework agreement providing for substantial self-government for Kosovo, taking full account of the
Rambouillet accords and the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the other countries of the region, and the demilitarization of UCK. Negotiations between the parties for a settlement should not delay or disrupt the establishment of democratic self-governing institutions.
9. A comprehensive approach to the economic development and stabilization of the crisis
region. This will include the implementation of a stability pact for South-Eastern Europe
with broad international participation in order to further promotion of democracy, economic prosperity, stability and regional cooperation.
10. Suspension of military activity will require acceptance of the principles set forth above in addition to agreement to other, previously identified, required elements, which are specified in the footnote below.(1) A military-technical agreement will then be rapidly concluded that would, among other things, specify additional modalities, including theroles and functions of Yugoslav/Serb personnel in Kosovo:
o Procedures for withdrawals,
including the phased, detailed schedule and delineation
of a buffer area in Serbia beyond which forces will be withdrawn;
o Equipment associated with returning personnel;
o Terms of reference for their functional responsibilities;
o Timetable for their return;
o Delineation of their geographical areas of operation;
o Rules governing their relationship to the international security presence and the international civil mission.
“Guiding Principles” of the Contact Group (November 2005)
The Contact Group has considered UN Secretary-General's letter and Ambassador Kai Eide's report on the comprehensive review of the situation in Kosovo contained therein that were submitted to the UN Security Council on 7 October 2005. The Contact Group calls on all parties to establish unified negotiating teams and agree on common positions.
The Contact Group supports the recommendation by the Secretary-General to the UN Security
Council based on this report to launch a process to determine the future status of Kosovo in accordance with UNSC Res 1244. It welcomes the intention of the Secretary-General to appoint
a Special Envoy to lead this process. The Contact Group looks forward to supporting the efforts
of the Special Envoy and his team.
A negotiated solution should be an international priority. Once the process has started, it cannot be blocked and must be brought to a conclusion. The Contact Group calls on the parties to engage in good faith and constructively, to refrain from unilateral steps and to reject any form of violence. Those advocating violence will have no role.
The Special Envoy can take appropriate action within his UUN mandate to suspend or exclude any individual or group, if he judges that their actions are not conducive to progress.
The process should provide for the effective participation of the Kosovo Serbs and other Kosovo
citizens and communities. Regional neighbors and other interested parties should also be consulted as necessary.
The progress of the status process will depend not only on the level of engagement by the parties but also on the conditions on the ground. The implementation of the standards laid down
by the United Nations must continue during the status process and will be a factor in determining progress.
The Contact Group reaffirms the importance which it attaches to constructive and sustained dialogue at all levels between Belgrade and Pristina and between the different communities in
Kosovo. It asks the authorities in Belgrade to actively encourage the Serbs of Kosovo to take their place in Kosovo's institutions.
The UN Security Council will remain actively seized of the matter. The final decision on Kosovo's Status should be endorsed by the UN Security Council.
The Contact Group therefore informs all the involved parties that the outcome of the Status process should be based on the principles set out below:
The Contact Group calls on all parties to establish unified negotiating teams and agree on common positions.
standards and contribute to realizing the European perspective of Kosovo, in particular,
Kosovo's progress in the Stabilization and Association Process, as well as the integration of the entire region in Euro-Atlantic institutions.
3. The settlement should ensure multi-ethnicity that is sustainable in Kosovo. It should provide effective constitutional guarantees and appropriate mechanisms to ensure the implementation of human rights for all citizens in Kosovo and of the rights of members of all communities, including the right of refugees and displaced persons to return to their homes in safety.
government, both on the central and on the local level. Effective structures of local self government established through the decentralization process should facilitate the coexistence of different communities and ensure equitable and improved access to public services.
5. The settlement of Kosovo's status should include specific safeguards for the protection of the
cultural and religious heritage in Kosovo. This should include provisions specifying the status of the Serbian Orthodox Church's institutions and sites and other patrimony in Kosovo.
current territory of Kosovo, i.e. no partition of Kosovo and no union of Kosovo with any country or part of any country. The territorial integrity and internal stability of regional neighbors will be fully respected.
will be included.
8. The settlement of Kosovo's status should promote effective mechanisms to strengthen Kosovo's ability to enforce the rule of law, to fight organized crime and terrorism and safeguard
the multiethnic character of the police and the judiciary.
9. The settlement should ensure that Kosovo can develop in a sustainable way both economically
and politically and that it can cooperate effectively with international organizations and international financial institutions.
10. For some time Kosovo will continue to need an international civilian and military presence to exercise appropriate supervision of compliance of the provisions of the status settlement, to ensure security and, in particular, protection for minorities as well as to monitor and support the
authorities in the continued implementation of standards.
UN Secretary-General's statement on
the new period of engagement on Kosovo
The Contact Group has briefed me of its engagement on the modalities for further negotiations between Pristina and Belgrade. This effort will be led by a Troika comprising representatives of The United Nations Office of the Special Envoy for Kosovo (UNOSEK) will be associated with the process by standing ready to provide information and clarification on request. New York, 1 August 2007
the European Union, the Russian Federation and the United States.
I welcome this initiative by the Contact Group, I hope that the new period of engagement will lead to agreement on Kosovo's future status, which remains a priority for the United Nations.
The international community must find a solution that is timely, addresses the key concerns of all communities living in Kosovo and provides clarity for Kosovo's status. The status quo is not sustainable.
The UN will continue to play a constructive role in the new period of engagement and continue
its major role on the ground in Kosovo.
The Contact Group will report back to me by 10 December.
The United Nations Office of the Special Envoy for Kosovo (UNOSEK) will be associated with the process by standing ready to provide information and clarification on request.
New York, 1 August 2007
August 9: First meeting of the Troika with the Contact Group (London)
September 27: Meeting of the Troika with the UN
Secretary-General, the EU SG/HR, the NATO Secretary-General and the Contact Group
Ministers (New York)
October 14: Fifth meeting of the Troika with the parties- Second face-to-face meeting
October 22: Sixth meeting of the Troika with the parties- Third face-to-face meeting (Vienna)
Statement on Kosovo by Contact Group Ministers
New York, 27 September 2007
Contact Group Ministers, together with the UN Secretary General, EU High Representative, the European Union Presidency, European Commissioner for Enlargement and the NATO Secretary-General met in New York on 27 September to discuss the Kosovo Status Process. They heard a report from the EU/Russia/US Troika. A representative of UNOSEK was also present. Ministers reiterated that an early resolution of Kosovo’s status is crucial to the stability and security of the Western Balkans and Europe as a whole. Ministers reaffirmed their resolve to seek a negotiated settlement endorsed by the UN Security Council. Ministers expressed their When they met in New York in September 2006, Contact Group Ministers encouraged the UN Special Envoy to prepare a comprehensive proposal for a status settlement. The proposal, As a further effort to achieve a negotiated settlement, the Contact Group established a Troika whose task would be to facilitate a period of further discussion between the parties. The Troik Ministers expressed full support for the Troika process and welcomed the quick pace of activity and the constructive atmosphere of the first rounds of talks. Ministers reiterated their view that the Contact Group’s Guiding Principles of November 2005 should continue to set the framework for the status process, which is based on UNSCR 1244.
appreciation for the continued efforts by UNMIK and KFOR to contribute towards a multi-ethnic, peaceful and democratic Kosovo. They endorsed fully the UN Secretary General’s assessment that the status quo is not sustainable. It has damaging consequences for Kosovo’s
political, social and economic development and for the underlying stability of the region. A solution therefore has to be found without delay.
submitted after 14 months of negotiations, has been accepted by Pristina and rejected by
a process will be concluded by the Contact Group reporting to the UN Secretary General by 10 December.
The next step in the Troika process will involve direct talks between the parties in New York on
28 September. Contact Group Ministers welcomed this move to face-to-face discussions.
Ministers reiterated that an early resolution of Kosovo’s status is crucial to the stability and security of the Western Balkans and Europe as a whole. Ministers reaffirmed their resolve to seek a negotiated settlement endorsed by the UN Security Council. Ministers expressed their
When they met in New York in September 2006, Contact Group Ministers encouraged the UN Special Envoy to prepare a comprehensive proposal for a status settlement. The proposal,
As a further effort to achieve a negotiated settlement, the Contact Group established a Troika whose task would be to facilitate a period of further discussion between the parties. The Troik
Ministers expressed full support for the Troika process and welcomed the quick pace of activity and the constructive atmosphere of the first rounds of talks. Ministers reiterated their view that the Contact Group’s Guiding Principles of November 2005 should continue to set the framework for the status process, which is based on UNSCR 1244.
Ministers urged both sides to approach the remaining negotiations with creativity, boldness and in a spirit of compromise. Furthermore, any settlement needs to be acceptable to the people of Kosovo, ensure standards implementation with regard to Kosovo’s multi-ethnic character and promote the future stability of the region. Ministers underlined that any future status settlement should focus on developing the special nature of the relations between the two sides, especially in their historical, economic, cultural and human dimensions. Ministers urged the parties to take seriously the opportunity created by the Troika process to secure a negotiated settlement. The onus is on each of the parties to develop realistic proposals.
Although the Special Envoy’s Comprehensive Proposal remains on the table, the Contact Group is ready to support any agreement reached between the parties. Ministers reiterated that
striving for a negotiated settlement should not obscure the fact that neither party can unilaterally block the status process from advancing. Ministers supported the continued engagement of the UN, and welcomed NATO and EU readiness to play a leading role in the implementation of a status settlement for Kosovo and to continue the necessary preparations for these responsibilities. Ministers welcomed the active approach adopted by the EU in the light of the European perspective of the Western Balkans region.
Ministers noted and welcomed the undertakings made to the Troika by both sides to refrain from provocative words and actions and call on the parties to honour these commitments. Political developments in Kosovo and Serbia should not interfere with the parties’ constructive
engagement in the Troika process. They expressed their hope that elections, due in Kosovo on 17 November, would take place with full participation of all communities and against a calm and orderly background.
All those present at the meeting will remain closely engaged with the process and fully
supportive of the Troika’s efforts.
Ministers urged the parties to take seriously the opportunity created by the Troika process to secure a negotiated settlement. The onus is on each of the parties to develop realistic proposals.
On the occasion of the meeting with the Troika on 30 August in Vienna, both parties reaffirmed their statements regarding the security situation.
The Belgrade delegation reaffirmed its willingness to do all within its power to ensure peace and stability during this process. The Serbian side and its institutions will exercise special vigilance in
The Pristina delegation reaffirmed its willingness to do all within its power to ensure peace and
stability during this process, taking into account KFOR's mandate for the overall safe and security environment of Kosovo and the respective mandates of UNMIK Police and the Kosovo Police Service.
Both sides promised to abstain from any acts or statements that might be regarded as provocative in the delicate atmosphere during the current period of engagement. Both sides agreed that these mutual commitments should serve as confidence building measures at the beginning of the period of engagement with the Troika.
Read to both delegations on 30 August and confirmed in the presence of all the members of the Troika.
New York Declaration (28 September)
At their meeting with the Troika on 28 September in New York City, both delegations welcomed the first direct talks between the parties held under Troika auspices. The parties reiterated their commitment to engage seriously in these talks. The Troika reminded the parties
of the Secretary-General's statement of 1 August that the status quo is not sustainable.
The two delegations were informed of the statement of the Contact Group at its Ministerial
Meeting in New York City on 27 September. Ministers reiterated, inter alia that an early resolution of Kosovo's status is crucial to the stability and security of the Western Balkans andEurope as a whole. Ministers reaffirmed their resolve to seek a negotiated settlement endorsed by the UNSC. Contact Group Guiding principles should continue to set the framework for status process, based on UNSC Resolution 1244.
Ministers also urged both sides to approach the remaining negotiations with creativity, boldness and in a spirit of compromise. They urged the parties to take seriously the opportunity created by the Troika process to secure a negotiated settlement. They also reminded the parties that the onus was on each of them to develop realistic proposals and that neither party could unilaterally block the process from advancing. Ministers underlined that any future status settlement should focus on developing the special nature of the relations between the two sides,
especially in their historical, economic, cultural and human dimensions.
Acknowledging that violence, provocation and intimidation would constitute a grave risk for the
Troika process as well as for the stability and security of the region, both parties reaffirmed their commitment, as expressed in the Vienna document of 30 August, to refrain from any activities or statements that might jeopardize the security situation.
Both parties understand that the Contact Group will report to the UN Secretary General by 10 December, 2007. In this regard, they welcomed the Troika's intention to intensify its work programme with a view to reaching agreement before the Troika's mandate concludes.
Accepted by both delegations at the first Troika-led direct meeting in New York City on 28 September and confirmed in the presence of all members of the Troika.
Troika Assessment of Negotiations: Principal Conclusions
The Troika has reviewed the positions of the two parties. Without prejudice to the positions of both parties on status, the following principles can open a path to a solution:
1. Belgrade and Pristina will focus on developing the special nature of the relations existing between them especially in their historical, economic, cultural and human dimensions.
2. Belgrade and Pristina will solve future problems between them in a peaceful manner and not engage in actions or dispositions that would be regarded as threatening to the other side.
3. Kosovo will be fully integrated into regional structures, particularly those involving economic cooperation.
4. There will be no return to the pre-1999 status.
5. Belgrade will not govern Kosovo.
6. Belgrade will not re-establish a physical presence in Kosovo.
7. Belgrade and Pristina are determined to make progress towards association and eventually membership of the European Union as well as to move progressively towards Euro-Atlantic structures.
9. Belgrade and Pristina will cooperate on issues of mutual concern, including:
a. Fate of missing persons and return of displaced persons
b. Protection of minorities
c. Protection of cultural heritage
d. their European perspectives and regional initiatives
e. Economic issues, including fiscal policy and energy, trade and harmonisation with EU standards and development of a joint economic growth and development strategy in line with regional economic initiatives
f. Free movement of people, goods, capital and services
g. Banking sector
h. Infrastructure, transportation and communications
i. Environmental protection
j. Public health and social welfare
k. Fight against crime, particularly in the areas of terrorism, human-, weapon- and drug-trafficking and organised crime.
l. Cooperation between municipalities and the Government of one of the two sides
10. Belgrade and Pristina will establish common bodies to implement cooperation.
11. Belgrade will not interfere in Pristina's relationship with IFIs.
12. Pristina will have full authority over its finances (taxation, public revenues, etc.)
13. Kosovo's EU Stabilization and Association Process (Tracking Mechanism) will continue unhindered by Belgrade.
14. The international community will retain civilian and military presences in Kosovo after status is determined.
Troika Press Communiqué: the Baden Conference
Baden, Austria - November 28, 2007
The EU/ U.S./Russia negotiating Troika has completed an intensive conference with the delegations from Belgrade and Pristina to discuss Kosovo's status. The Troika brought together leaders of both sides in Baden, Austria, for nearly three days of intense talks. The Baden Conference marks the end of Troika-sponsored face to face negotiations.
Over the course of the talks, the Troika urged the parties to consider a broad range of options for Kosovo's status. The Troika explored together with both sides every reasonable status outcome for Kosovo to determine where there might be potential for a mutually-acceptable outcome.
Regrettably, the parties were unable to reach an agreement on Kosovo’s future status. Nevertheless, the Troika believes that the parties benefited from this period of intensive dialogue. It was an opportunity for them to build trust and to identify shared interests, in particular their desire to seek a better future through achievement of a European perspective.
The Troika-led negotiations provided the parties six occasions to discuss directly the final status of Kosovo. The negotiations created an opportunity to engage in dialogue at the highest levels. These meetings have permitted the Troika to reiterate the importance of maintaining peace, avoiding incitement to violence and jeopardizing security in the region. The parties have accepted these principles repeatedly, most recently during the Baden Conference. Both sides made it clear they wish to avoid violence. This commitment to peace must continue after the Troika completes its work on December 10. The Troika calls on Belgrade and Pristina to maintain communications without prejudice to their positions on status. It is up to Belgrade and Pristina to sustain their commitment to peace and dialogue on issues of mutual concern.
The Troika will now begin to draft the report which will be submitted no later than December 10 to Secretary General by the Contact Group. During the Troika’s December 3 visit to Belgrade and Pristina, it will review this report with the parties. After the Contact Group submits the report to the UN Secretary General, the Troika's mandate will conclude.