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Kosovo: One year after signing key self-government act, UN cites 'great success'

Kosovo: One year after signing key self-government act, UN cites 'great success'

The top UN official in Kosovo today marked the one-year anniversary of the Constitutional Framework for Provisional Self-government in the province by calling the document "a great success."

"We have had elections; we have an Assembly, provisional institutions and a Government. None of this would have been possible without the Constitutional Framework," Michael Steiner, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and head of the UN mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), said today.

Signed as Regulation 2001/9 by then-Special Representative of the Secretary-General Hans Haekkerup, the Constitutional Framework set up the legal structure for today's Provisional Institutions of Self-Government (PISG), and it described the powers and responsibilities that would be put into the hands of Kosovo's leaders and civil servants after the general elections of 17 November 2001.

The Framework was drafted over seven weeks in spring 2001 by a working group composed originally of seven Kosovo and six international members under the chairmanship of Johan Van Lamoen, an international expert in the field of transitional legal regimes.

In its preamble, the Framework recalls that "UN Security Council resolution 1244 (1999) envisages the setting up and development of meaningful self-government in Kosovo pending a final settlement…" and that a "gradual transfer of responsibilities to Provisional Institutions of Self-Government will, through parliamentary democracy, enhance democratic governance and respect for the rule of law in Kosovo."

The document also recognized "the importance of creating a free, open and safe environment which facilitates the participation of all persons, including all members of communities in the process of establishing democratic institutions of self-government."