United Nations S/2000/538 Security Council Distr.: General 6 June 2000 Original: English
[The annexes, containing information relating to the consolidated budget, the establishment of military liaison officers in UNMIK and UNMIK Police, have been omitted.]
47. Violations of the human rights of all communities in Kosovo continue to be a major concern of UNMIK. Systemic problems in the criminal justice system have sustained a climate of impunity. There are persistent complaints from ethnic minorities that criminal incidents against them are not fully investigated or prosecuted in comparison with crimes against the majority community. Pre-trial detention is of major concern, both with regard to its length and access by detainees to attorneys and the outside world. This was illustrated by the recent hunger strike in Mitrovica by Kosovo Serb and Roma detainees complaining both about the length of their detention before trial and alleged bias in the treatment they had received, in contrast to the treatment of the majority community. With the number of criminal trials now increasing, the right to a fair trial is also of concern, including access by defendants to legal advice of sufficient quality to ensure that they are adequately defended. The continued lack of a functioning civil justice system is also of concern, particularly with regard to property cases.
48. The increased population movements have contributed to increased concerns regarding property rights. With neither the Housing and Property Directorate nor the civil justice system being able yet to deal with property disputes, the large number of returnees generally find themselves unable to legally access accommodation, or their return to existing accommodation causes secondary displacement of the previous inhabitants. In addition, access to education, health care and employment remains limited for returnees. There have been indications that violations of civil and political rights, in the context of elections, are already increasing. These violations include the harassment of political activists and parties, in particular the Democratic League of Kosovo. Allegations brought to the attention of UNMIK include verbal threats, physical assaults and attacks, including arson, on buildings and property belonging to political parties.
49. Violence against women and girls in Kosovo is a significant concern. More work is needed to investigate and bring to trial those accused of crimes committed against women and girls during the conflict in Kosovo and to ensure redress. Access to medical and psychological care for victims of sexual violence is limited, and many remain untreated. In addition, legal remedies are inadequate and discriminate against women. Other forms of violence against women and girls occurring in Kosovo include domestic violence and trafficking for purposes of forced prostitution. Legislative working groups are currently drafting laws to combat domestic violence and trafficking in women and girls.
50. The continued publication of “hate speech” remains a major concern. One area is the publication of inflammatory articles attacking ethnic groups. Of an even greater security concern is the practice, among certain sectors of the local media, of publicly naming persons living in Kosovo and alleging that they have committed war crimes. Although the frequency of such publications has recently decreased, the link between them and violence was graphically illustrated with the recent murder of a Kosovo Serb UNMIK staff member. This murder came only days after the publication of an article in a local newspaper alleging that this staff member was a war criminal and giving details of where he could be found. Controlling such dangerous publications, while continuing to respect the basic principle of freedom of speech, remains a delicate balancing act.
51. Discrimination in the employment sector, particularly against ethnic minorities and the less educated, is increasingly apparent. While precise unemployment figures are not available, employment opportunities remain limited. Access to employment for ethnic minorities is greatly restricted by security concerns, which limit freedom of movement. The most prominent examples of discrimination in employment have been in the public sector, with persistent complaints of persons being employed or promoted on political grounds, particularly in the education and health sectors. There are also widespread complaints that persons who return to Kosovo after having left temporarily (including many members of ethnic minority communities) are prevented from returning to their former employment. The implementation of equitable public sector employment policies remains problematic.
52. The highly sensitive issue of missing persons, detainees and prisoners remains a serious obstacle to the resolution of inter-community tensions. My Special Representative has repeatedly highlighted the need for the urgent appointment of a Special Envoy to address these issues. Tangible progress in this regard will be crucial in promoting peaceful coexistence in Kosovo. Representatives of Kosovo Albanian political parties and local human rights non-governmental organizations have repeatedly linked their support and cooperation in the return of Kosovo Serb internally displaced persons to the resolution of the issue of detained and missing Kosovo Albanians. This appears to be the position of a significant part of the Kosovo Albanian population.
53. The issue of missing persons and detainees has been extensively discussed in IAC and KTC. The Kosovo Albanian representatives in KTC underlined the importance of raising this issue in contacts with Western Governments and bringing it to the attention of the European Parliament. Public pressure has also increased on UNMIK to further its efforts to obtain the release of Kosovo Albanian detainees in Serbia proper and to determine the fate of missing persons.
54. The Victim Recovery and Identification Commission, which was established on 11 May, is the authority responsible for the recovery, identification and disposition of mortal remains, collecting related data and providing social and legal support to the families of missing persons. The timing of the establishment of the Commission is opportune given the increasingly vocal demand by the local population and local political parties that the international community concretely address the issue of detainees and missing persons. The Commission has returned 13 bodies to their families to date. The institution-building pillar’s identification project, including a team of international pathologists, assists in the identification of remains exhumed by the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia and other agencies, and also develops local capacity for identification.
55. The Tribunal resumed its exhumation of mass gravesites in Kosovo in April and plans to work through October 2000. During its operations in 2000, the Tribunal plans to excavate nearly 300 mass graves. During its operations in 1999, the team excavated 270 mass graves and exhumed over 2,000 bodies. According to the Tribunal, no new identification of exhumed bodies can be expected until autumn, when the Victim Recovery and Identification Commission will carry out such identification.
56. The trial of 143 Kosovo Albanians in the Nis court in Serbia culminated on 24 May in the handing down of sentences averaging 12 years of imprisonment for each prisoner. The reaction in Kosovo was, as expected, negative, sparking demonstrations across the province. My Special Representative and the Kosovo Albanian members of IAC met with the family members of the detainees in Djakovica.
V. Establishment of the judicial system and the rule of law
57. UNMIK has accorded priority attention to the establishment of an effective judicial and penal management system. Without such institutions, efforts to instil respect for the rule of law in the local population will be hampered. Despite the appointment of more than 400 judges, prosecutors and lay judges and the increased capacity of the courts, the unwillingness of witnesses to testify and the ethnic bias and risk of intimidation of some judicial personnel have hampered the administration of justice. Of the more than 400 judges, prosecutors and lay judges that have been appointed, only 46 are non-ethnic Kosovo Albanians, and 7 of those are Kosovo Serbs.
58. Since the judges, prosecutors and lay judges for all regions were sworn in in January and February, 11 trials have been held in the Gnjilane District Court, 8 in the Pristina District Court, 10 in the Pec District Court and 7 in the Prizren District Court. A total of 33 convictions and 12 acquittals have resulted from those trials. The six trials that were scheduled to take place in the Mitrovica District Court during the latter half of March were suspended for security reasons. However, 11 trials have been scheduled at the Mitrovica District Court between 6 June and 1 August. Trials have also begun in the Mitrovica Municipal Court.
59. From the second week in April until the third week in May, 31 Kosovo Serb and 5 Roma detainees in the Mitrovica detention centre went on a hunger strike. As noted above, the detainees began their hunger strike in protest over the length of their pre-trial detention periods. On 21 May, my Special Representative met with them and promised that he would use all his efforts to ensure that a Kosovo Serb and/or international judge would preside over their cases, in addition to Kosovo Albanian judges. As a result, the detainees agreed to end their hunger strike. Twelve trials have been scheduled for the hunger strikers in the Mitrovica Municipal Court, the Mitrovica District Court and the Pristina District Court. The efforts of UNMIK to encourage Kosovo Serb judges, who have already been nominated, to become judicially active have also intensified. An international judge and one international prosecutor have been appointed pursuant to UNMIK regulation 2000/6 and are fully integrated and functional in the Mitrovica District Court. The international judge sat on a trial for the first time on 25 May at the Municipal Court in Mitrovica.
60. In order to build public confidence in the judicial system, UNMIK plans to take immediate measures, in particular the appointment of international judges and prosecutors throughout Kosovo. The particular nature of war and ethnically related crimes and the number of such cases in Kosovo demand that panels with both local and international components try them. Preparations are under way to establish a Kosovo war and ethnic crimes court. Local and international response to this initiative has been favourable. The creation of this court is a factor in the re-establishment of the rule of law, in consolidating peace through justice and in paving the way towards reconciliation.
61. Given the number of serious offences and the resumption of trials, there will soon be an increased need for space in the correctional facilities. Currently only around 100 spaces (out of a total capacity of 497) are available in different detention centres in Kosovo, which are managed by UNMIK penal management, UNMIK police and KFOR. Of the 350 persons in detention as of 29 May, more than half have been charged with serious crimes. The Kosovo Correctional Service employs over 350 local correctional officers in different positions in institutions around Kosovo.
62. UNMIK continued to promote the establishment of the Ombudsperson institution. While IAC has endorsed the draft regulation, UNMIK has continued to work with KFOR to clarify the wording of the text and the extent of the powers of the Ombudsperson. The Kosovo Judicial Institute began functioning during the first week of March and has conducted a series of induction seminars for judges and prosecutors in all five regions of Kosovo. The Institute is currently preparing two round-table seminars, one on the collaboration between the police and the courts during the investigative stage (for judges and prosecutors) and the other on juvenile justice (for judges, prosecutors and defence lawyers).
63. The Kosovo Law Centre has fulfilled all conditions to become a registered non-governmental organization under UNMIK regulation 1999/22. A candidate has been selected for the position of local co-director, and the Centre is expected to open shortly. A compilation of the primary applicable criminal laws prepared by the Centre has been distributed to members of the judiciary and the local legal community.
64. The General Assembly of the Kosovo Bar Association held its first meeting since 1992 in Pristina on 29 April. Approximately 130 out of the 140 licensed attorneys currently practising in Kosovo, including representatives of all minority communities, attended. The new Executive Board of the Bar Association includes two representatives of non-Albanian communities (one Kosovo Serb and one Kosovo Turk) out of nine posts. The Bar Disciplinary Board includes 3 representatives of non-Albanian communities (2 Kosovo Serbs and 1 Kosovo Muslim Slav woman) out of 18 posts.
65. UNMIK, through the humanitarian affairs pillar (UNHCR), cooperates closely on humanitarian and other issues with other United Nations partners such as the World Food Programme (WFP), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), UNICEF, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Labour Organization (ILO), as well as with the International Organization for Migration (IOM), ICRC, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and over 250 international and 45 local non-governmental organizations.
A. Transition of the humanitarian programme to longer-term development and reconstruction
66. The emergency relief needs of Kosovo have been successfully met. Therefore, the humanitarian affairs pillar will cease to exist as a formal component within the UNMIK structure by the end of June 2000. However, a Humanitarian Coordinator, named by UNHCR, will work with my Special Representative’s Executive Committee and serve as an observer in KTC. The Humanitarian Coordinator will continue to facilitate the transition to reconstruction and development in close cooperation with the three remaining pillars.
67. While the transition process has advanced well in many respects, there remain some areas of concern. Lack of access to services by minority communities continues to be a major problem as a direct consequence of the security situation and, as a result, there will continue to be a need for humanitarian assistance to such communities. Also, as agricultural production resumes, the distribution of international food assistance must be monitored carefully to ensure that it does not inhibit local agricultural production.
68. The JIAS Department of Reconstruction, which is under the economic reconstruction pillar (EU), has designed an important programme for assisted housing reconstruction, including selection criteria and construction standards. UNHCR has seconded expert staff to the pillar in order to accelerate the coordination of this process and to pass on knowledge gained from the winterization project. There are also important transition initiatives taking place in other sectors. For example, WFP and other agencies, including UNHCR and several international non-governmental organizations, are working closely with the JIAS Department of Health and Social Welfare on the creation of a new social welfare system. It has been agreed that WFP and its partners will continue to provide a reduced level of food aid as part of the overall welfare package. Common beneficiary criteria and registration lists will ensure a coordinated system, with beneficiaries receiving food and/or cash.
69. The Humanitarian Community Information Centre works closely with a wide range of actors to encourage and facilitate information sharing in support of ongoing humanitarian relief, as well as reconstruction and development efforts. The Centre has developed a database to facilitate the regional coordination of housing reconstruction. It has also provided data collection and mapping support to the civil registration process, through collaboration with the institution-building pillar.
70. Of some 841,000 Kosovo Albanian refugees who have returned to Kosovo, more than 147,000 have returned in an organized manner, mostly with the assistance of UNHCR and IOM. It is estimated that 13,900 refugees from Kosovo, including Albanians, Serbs and Roma, remain in neighbouring countries. As at 29 May, the total number of internally displaced persons from Kosovo who had registered for humanitarian assistance in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia stood at some 211,000, with 180,000 in Serbia and 31,000 in Montenegro.
71. While voluntary return movements from Western Europe and other countries have been ongoing, forced returns started at the end of March. It is anticipated that between 100,000 and 150,000 people will return to Kosovo during the current year. At a meeting of the Intergovernmental Consultations on Asylum and Migration (a consortium of 16 Governments dealing with asylum, refugee and migration issues), held in Geneva in March, UNMIK, including UNHCR, urged host Governments to ensure orderly, humane and phased returns. UNMIK also urged Governments to establish a clear priority for returns on a voluntary basis. On 6 April, UNMIK and the Government of Switzerland signed a memorandum of understanding on the issue of returnees to Kosovo, which was based on a memorandum of understand signed by UNMIK and Germany in November 1999.
72. UNMIK has recognized the generosity of host countries in receiving large numbers of Kosovo refugees during the crisis. However, the Mission has expressed concerns that, in view of Kosovo’s limited absorption capacity, uncontrolled large-scale returns could have a potentially destabilizing effect and prove detrimental to the achievements made to date. There is particular concern that the already precarious situation of minority populations could deteriorate still further in the event of large-scale returns of Kosovo Albanians competing for scarce housing and employment opportunities. Therefore, on 13 April, my Special Representative issued an open letter that appealed to the authorities of host countries to minimize the practice of forced returns, especially of those who are socially or ethnically vulnerable or have a criminal history, and to pace the returns in a way that would allow humanitarian agencies to provide the necessary support to those returning upon their arrival in Kosovo. My Special Representative also called upon those countries to actively participate with UNMIK in the reception of returnees in Kosovo.
73. A Joint Committee on Returns for Kosovo Serbs was established on 2 May to explore prospects for the safe, orderly and sustainable return of those displaced Kosovo Serbs wishing to come back to their homes and to coordinate all efforts and initiatives in this regard. It is composed of representatives from UNMIK and KFOR, as well as Bishop Artemije of SNC Gracanica. The Joint Committee on Returns is the only channel through which return movements of Kosovo Serbs will be considered in order to avoid uncoordinated initiatives that could endanger the safety of returnees. Oliver Ivanovic from SNC Mitrovica has been invited to join the Committee. A working group has fielded several missions in different locations in order to assess the feasibility for returns and to work on improving conditions. Some displaced persons have come to visit their places of origin, and in other areas there have been some returns already. The proposal regarding the return of Kosovo Serbs to Istok has led to a series of protests in the Pec region.
74. Implementation of the Platform for Joint Action for the Roma, Ashkalija and Egyptian communities is also crucial for the creation of conditions that will foster the return of displaced populations. Within the general framework of the Platform, UNHCR is actively pursuing “go and see” visits which would permit displaced Roma, Ashkalija and Egyptians to take informed decisions about their return at this stage.
75. The return of other minority populations to their places of origin is of equal concern, and UNMIK is committed to creating conditions that would permit such return without discrimination. UNHCR, as the agency mandated to seek durable solutions for refugees and internally displaced persons, will continue playing a role in this regard.
76. Within Kosovo, the first returns of ethnic Albanians to northern Mitrovica went ahead in early March as an important component of the mission’s strategy to address the division of the city. The circumstances under which these returns took place were difficult. Since then, the situation has calmed down, although there are still reports of harassment of ethnic Albanians in northern Mitrovica. The installation of the footbridge linking the three apartment buildings in northern Mitrovica, where over 250 ethnic Albanians returned, to southern Mitrovica, together with the widening of the confidence zone, are new and positive security measures that are enhancing freedom of movement. Efforts will continue to enable Kosovo Serb internally displaced persons to return, on a voluntary basis, to their apartments in southern Mitrovica.
77. Demining activities are to remain under humanitarian coordination structures at least for the remainder of this year, following which a national demining body should assume responsibility. The Mine Action Programme, under the leadership of the United Nations Mine Action Coordination Centre, coordinates mine action activities. The anticipated increase in mine and unexploded ordnance casualties coinciding with the arrival of spring has occurred as expected, with the rate now averaging 15 persons killed or injured per month. A total of 101 people have been killed and 395 injured in mine or unexploded ordnance incidents since June 1999. Incidents involving cluster munitions dropped by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization continue to occur. The most recent incident killed a young boy and critically injured two more children. The number of teams undertaking cluster bomb clearance has risen to 17 and, in addition, KFOR has recently increased its efforts to survey and mark the affected areas. Mine clearance activities continued throughout the period under review, with significant progress being made in this area. To date, 3,405 anti-personnel mines, 3,768 anti-tank mines, 3,066 cluster bombs and 9,327 items of unexploded ordnance have been cleared by teams coordinated by the Mine Action Coordination Centre.
78. Considerable progress has been made by UNMIK in establishing normality and improving the living conditions of the Kosovo population. The development of the legal basis for the interim administration, in the context of Security Council resolution 1244 (1999) and the applicable law, is an ongoing process. Twenty-seven regulations and ten administrative directions were issued by my Special Representative during the period from 1 March to 31 May. The regulations and administrative directions cover a range of issues, some of which establish the JIAS departments, provide the legal basis for revenue collection (e.g., registration of businesses and tax administration) and establish the legal instruments necessary for the upcoming municipal elections (e.g., the Central Election Commission and the registration of political parties). UNMIK has also focused on gender mainstreaming along sectoral/departmental lines in order to promote institutional mechanisms for the advancement of women in Kosovo.
79. “Kosovo: Reconstruction 2000”, a comprehensive public reconstruction and investment programme, has been presented to donors so as to better target donor resources in support of the Mission’s priorities for reconstruction. The reconstruction needs are extensive. In aggregate, investments of over DM 2 billion have been identified. Funds pledged by donors currently total DM 2.6 billion, against which known commitments total DM 1.2 billion. A number of high-priority needs remain without significant funding, including the rehabilitation of courts, schools, hospitals and other public buildings; the development of multiple solid waste disposal facilities and environmental clean-up; and the development of the local human resources.
80. The Central Housing Committee has been established as the coordinating board for housing reconstruction in Kosovo. UNMIK and its partners, especially donors, have agreed on a common approach to housing reconstruction in order to maximize the impact of available aid and to ensure fair and transparent distribution. The basic strategy seeks to concentrate on the neediest people in Kosovo and to stimulate the development of economic activity in the private housing market. Coordination structures are being established at the local level. To date, 19 municipal boards have been set up to identify beneficiaries and to monitor the execution of the building works. The European Union has committed DM 110 million to this effort. Over 12,000 houses have already been rebuilt and work is currently under way on an additional 5,000. This effort is in addition to the very extensive building activity being undertaken by the private sector.
81. The health care system in Kosovo has shown steady improvement. A Kosovo Drug Regulatory Authority empowered to issue import licences for pharmaceuticals and to control and regulate the import and sale of drugs has been established. A number of administrative instructions have been issued to establish policies, for example on tuberculosis and oral health. A health facility master plan, intended to guide donors and non-governmental organizations in the reconstruction of health care facilities, has been prepared. The recent tularaemia epidemic in Kosovo was investigated and contained through the combined efforts of UNMIK, KFOR, United Nations agencies, donors and non-governmental organizations. A major effort has been launched to stop an infection of staphylococcus aureus in the maternity ward of the Pristina University Hospital. All hospitals and most health houses have now been provided with high-capacity generators to replace or complement the smaller ones that were acquired last winter as an emergency measure.
82. A $3 million World Bank-funded project has been initiated to design a strategy for health care financing, strengthen the capacity of the health insurance fund, prepare an implementation plan for the restructuring of the health sector and monitor the impact of social reforms. The final round of payments under the emergency financial assistance programme, designed to provide financial assistance to the most vulnerable families of Kosovo, was completed. A total of about DM 30 million was disbursed, which benefited over 80,000 families.
83. UNMIK has initiated a process, together with international agencies, donors and local participants, to formulate a blueprint for the education system in Kosovo. The World Bank has sponsored a large project at Pristina University, which includes the formulation of new statutes, the introduction of a modern management system and the establishment of a programme for the certification of physicians and lawyers. The printing and distribution of all primary and secondary school textbooks in the Albanian, Turkish and Bosniac languages is nearing completion. Efforts continue to encourage Kosovo Serb teachers to accept teaching assignments and review textbooks in the Serbian language for use in Kosovo schools.
84. Seven airline companies are presently operating daily service from Pristina, and three others will start shortly. More than 13,000 commercial passengers were registered in April at the Pristina airport. A Kosovo Aviation Authority has been created to assist and coordinate the development and conduct of civil aviation in Kosovo. The Pristina airport now operates on a self-financing basis.
85. Efforts to rehabilitate and improve the transport and infrastructure sector have intensified as the weather has improved. During the period under review, a total of 11 projects in various regions have been initiated, on facilitating and managing urban traffic, maintaining streets and installing traffic signs and signals. The European Union has committed DM 30 million for road-building programmes.
E. Post and telecommunications
86. The sale of UNMIK postage stamps and first-day covers began on 15 March, and efforts to fully restore the postal system in Kosovo are continuing. The international letter service was scheduled to start on 31 May. The new global system for mobile (GSM) telephone service, commercially launched in February, has developed to cover four cities and the airport in Kosovo. There are about 20,000 pre-paid subscribers at present. Repairs to the fixed telephone network continue; in particular, two projects have been developed for reconnecting Kosovo Serb enclaves to the public network.
87. UNMIK, together with FAO and the World Bank, is making vigorous efforts to revitalize agricultural activity in Kosovo. Fertilizers, seed potatoes, maize and other seeds, as well as vegetable kits, have been distributed to farmers for the spring sowing season. A $25 million World Bank-funded project to re-launch farming activities and reorganize veterinary services has been initiated. The European Union is committing DM 20 million to agricultural projects this year. The wheat harvest in July is expected to yield 220,000 tons, which would meet the needs of 65 per cent of the population. A cattle vaccination campaign will be completed in the coming months. A forestry management structure is being set up and tree planting has begun.
88. Within the framework of institution-building activities, an environmental awareness campaign was launched on Earth Day (22 April) with the planting of trees and flowers as well as a massive clean-up effort all over Kosovo. UNMIK and KFOR have both begun environmental clean-up projects, including a river-cleaning project in Podujevo and a garbage clean-up project in Mitrovica and Pristina. A survey is under way to determine the capabilities and needs of local institutes that are active in monitoring the quality of air, water, soil, biological diversity and food. A survey of environmental pollution related to the Trepca industrial complex has been completed. The survey showed significant residual pollution. Plans for a clean-up are being prepared.
89. In view of the large number of young people in Kosovo, separate departments for youth and sports have been established under JIAS. The Department of Youth will play an advocacy role to promote youth initiatives, foster international and regional contacts and steer civil society agencies that are active in this field. The Department of Sports has initiated a number of activities to harness and promote talent in various sports. Donor support is being sought to create a modern sports infrastructure and to improve existing facilities.
I. Civil security and emergency preparedness
90. Extensive efforts have continued to develop the Kosovo Protection Corps into a capable civil emergency unit. The total strength of KPC, as at 29 May, was 4,542 persons, including 53 from minority communities. Ten per cent of all KPC positions are reserved for minorities. More than 20,000 individuals applied for the Corps, and 4,510 final nominees were selected. Of those, over 130 were rejected as a result of background checks. Complaints against members, or alleged members, of KPC have diminished. There have been 95 allegations of non-compliance with KPC regulations or criminal activity by KPC members. A total of 59 cases are under investigation, and 36 have been closed for lack of evidence. Since the establishment of KPC, four of its members have been removed for offences and nine other individuals are currently under suspension pending review of the charges against them. All KPC members are on probationary status for one year, and individuals may be dismissed for prior criminal activities whenever such activities come to light.
91. Introductory training for KPC members, coordinated by IOM in cooperation with the Council of Europe and non-governmental organizations, is now well-advanced. Senior KPC officers have received training in human rights, civil protection, KPC regulations and leadership. Mid-ranking officers have undergone similar programmes, with the addition of mine-awareness training. Ordinary KPC members have received initial training in civil protection, human rights, first aid, basic emergency operations and KPC rules and regulations. IOM management advisory teams, composed of advisers in various fields, are deployed at the central and regional levels to develop KPC management and administrative capabilities.
92. In addition to training, KPC members have been engaged in a range of tasks. More than 1,000 members have been involved in various work projects, such as garbage clean-up, road repair, school reconstruction and building of local services such as bakeries and greenhouses. More than 30 additional projects, such as tree planting, school painting and road repair, are being prepared.
93. UNMIK will begin to issue UNMIK travel documents in order to facilitate the travel of persons in Kosovo to third countries. The layout and design of the travel document has been finalized, and a contract has been signed for the printing of the documents. The documents have been successfully tested and found to be tamper-proof. The Presidency of the European Union, on behalf of the 15 member States, has issued a statement of support for the new travel document. Meanwhile, 2,658 Emergency travel recommendations have been issued to date. They are, however, not always honoured by neighbouring countries. Birth, marriage and death certificates are being issued by all municipalities. Three vehicle registration sites, in Pristina, Djakovica and Prizren, are now operational. About 22,000 vehicles have been registered to date.
94. The development of a non-politicized and efficient civil service for Kosovo remains an important objective for UNMIK. Progress is being made in the development of a professional local civil service at the central and municipal levels. Positions within JIAS are advertised, and staff are selected on the basis of merit. Training and human resources management programmes are being developed. A significant achievement has been the smooth transition from the system of stipend payments to salary payments for all public employees paid from the Kosovo consolidated budget. A total amount of DM 26 million was disbursed as salaries to 54,000 employees for the months of March and April 2000. A central payroll database, which will include all public employees, is being developed.
L. Housing and Property Directorate
95. The Housing and Property Directorate and Claims Commission, which deals mainly with private residential housing disputes, has begun its operations. The Kosovo Cadastral Agency has been established, and steps have been taken to appoint commissioners to the Housing and Property Directorate and Claims Commission.
M. Banking and Payments Authority
96. The Banking and Payments Authority of Kosovo provides UNMIK with payment services from its main branch in Pristina and limited cash payment services from its 6 branches and 22 sub-branches around Kosovo. To date, more than 200,000 cash payments amounting to over DM 200 million have been made. Through the Authority’s Licensing and Supervision Department, the first banking licence was issued on 10 January to the Microfinance Bank, and since then the Bank has opened branches in Pristina, Prizren and Pec. In addition, 5 preliminary banking licences have been issued to commercial bank licence applicants who anticipate opening some 12 new branches by the end of the year. Approximately eight non-bank financial institutions also provide much-needed credit to citizens and small businesses.
97. Vocational centres are being established, which are coordinated by the Kosovo employment offices. Entrepreneurial training programmes, targeting female-headed households, are under way.
98. To encourage the restart of economic activity, to manage existing assets in an efficient and responsible manner and to attract new investment, a strategy for private sector development has been finalized. The strategy includes a transparent and internationally defensible process to definitively determine the ownership of commercial assets and property and to pay fair compensation where it is due. In most cases, UNMIK expects that this will lead to reasonably rapid privatization. Arrangements for interim measures to revitalize enterprises (including management leases and contracts) will be taken in respect of enterprises under the Mission’s interim administration. The strategy has been presented to IAC. In this regard, the Department of Trade and Industry has now finalized its negotiations for a 10-year management lease for the Sarr Cement Factory. A three-stage strategy to consider the future of the Trepca industrial complex is being implemented. International consortium negotiations continued with a third, and possibly final, round of talks scheduled in early June.
99. Over DM 150 million has been invested in the power sector, and repair work has now been completed on one of the main power generation units, which was severely damaged by fire earlier this year. Repair work on other facilities is continuing. The power situation has now stabilized and supplies of coal, chemicals and consumables have been built up. During the reporting period, Kosovo was able to export energy at certain times of the day.
100. In the water supply and sanitation sectors, further donor commitments have been secured for supporting a range of medium- and long-term programmes totalling more than DM 100 million over the next three years. This will ensure the reconstruction of all the existing urban water supply systems. A continued and ongoing communication between the public utility enterprises and UNMIK has been established in an effort to coordinate the reform of this sector. During a recent donor working group meeting, the fundamental structures for an overall sector strategy and future regulatory framework were finalized.
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