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Title:The EU and civilian crisis management: a case study of EULEX KOSOVO and building multi-ethnic rule of law
Author(s):Jackson, Christopher Marcus
Contributor(s):Rosenstein, Matthew A
Department / Program:Liberal Arts & Sciences
Discipline:European Union Studies
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):European Union Rule of Law Mission (EULEX)
European Union
Rule of Law
Peace Building
Abstract:The European Union Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo, EULEX KOSOVO, constitutes the largest and longest lasting manifestation of the Common Foreign and Security Policy in EU history. Deployed in 2008 following Kosovo’s declaration of independence from Serbia after nine years of administration by the UN, EULEX is tasked with monitoring, mentoring, and advising relevant local authorities in the reconstitution of a justice system conforming to European standards. EULEX personnel are deployed in capacities of policing, forensics, customs, prosecution, and judiciary. Despite 15 years of international assistance in this field, Kosovo remains a place plagued by inter-ethnic tensions, organized crime, and corruption. Following a brief, but costly ethnic war in 1998-99, and ensuing inter-ethnic violence, the Serb minority of Kosovo separated into defensible enclaves spread around the territory, the largest being north of the Ibar River, contiguous with Serbia. Since 1999, these enclaves have grown divergent from the central authorities in Prishtina and heavily reliant on Serbian-backed parallel structures of administration and security. Consequently in reforming a uniform rule of law system in Kosovo, EULEX faces the challenge of bridging an ethno-territorial cleavage, characterized by stark nationalism and embedded resistance to the other. In this paper, I examine EULEX’s ability to act as a liberal peace actor in instituting a uniform rule of law system in post-war Kosovo. Although it portrays itself as a highly technical actor to appease all sides, EULEX’s ability to function is politically dependent. As a result, rule of law has a become an overtly political process dependent on dialogue and compromise. This greatly empowers local illiberal elites, while largely failing to engage with Kosovo’s societal space and thus failing to engender local ownership of rule of law. The case of EULEX KOSOVO is important and can serve as an example for future Western civilian crisis management operations in post-conflict settings such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Georgia, and Ukraine.
Issue Date:2015-04-28
Rights Information:Copyright 2015 Christopher Jackson
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-07-22
Date Deposited:May 2015

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