Government wants competencies for justice, law and order

Prishtina, 10 of September 2004 – Some UNMIK highest-ranking officials will soon hold a joint meeting to discuss the transfer of reserved competencies, including Chapter VIII competencies, which so far have been the reserved competencies of the SRSG, Koha Ditore reported yesterday.

The paper says that this information was announced by UNMIK spokesman Jeff Bieley, who said that the competencies of Chapter VIII would be discussed, apart from competencies that tackle the area of sovereignty. “UNMIK chief Søren Jessen-Petersen is expected to discuss with senior UNMIK officials the transfer of competencies to local institutions,” said Bieley, adding that after a decision is made by senior UNMIK officials, the transfer of competencies will be discussed with officials of local institutions.

Asked to comment on the issue, Mimoza Kusari, spokeswoman for the Kosovo government, was quoted as saying, “In talks between the government and UNMIK so far about the issue of competencies, there were requests for the transfer of competencies that are necessary to lead the institutions of Kosovo.”

Kusari said that the government’s request to form the Ministry of Energy, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Law and Order could be realized only through a transfer of competencies to local institutions. Kusari said that the issue was not about offices anymore and added that in the next mandate the Kosovo government would hopefully be more complete.

Commenting the possible transfer of exclusive competencies, Kusari was optimistic, “because there is currently a positive climate about the transfer of competencies… and at least in the field of economy, we expect a larger transfer of competencies from internationals to locals.”

Adding to the same issue, Koha Ditore points out a recent statement made by US Head of Office Philip Goldberg who said that the economy of Kosovo should be controlled by Kosovars, “competencies in this field should be in the hands of local institutions.”