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DPKO Topic: Rebuilding Kosovo

All around the world military conflicts arise between ethnic groups resulting in death and destruction. More than lives are destroyed during these campaigns of violence however. Often times one of the hardest parts of a war is rebuilding a nation that has been reduced to rubble. Agricultural production, public utilities, and general infrastructure suffer some heavy damage as well. Peacekeeping helps nations crippled by conflicts establish safe and secure foundations for prolonged peace. The Department of Peace-Keeping Operations (DPKO) has a very crucial role in the peace and security in many parts of the globe. The DPKO consists of military personnel and civilian police officers from participating nations trained to observe peace processes. These people monitor the region and try to prevent further violence from erupting between rival factions. The former nation of Yugoslavia has been horribly war-torn since its creation, and peacekeeping troops remain there to this day. During this conference we will be dealing with the issue of remaining peacekeeping troops in this Balkan region. We will discuss preventing ethnic groups from fighting, establishing lasting peace accords, and steps towards holding a free election in the area.

Past UN (DPKO) Action

On June 29, 2001 former President of Yugoslavia Slobodan Milosevic was arrested and turned over to the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. Legislation during this time paved the way for leaders who perpetrate war crimes to be tried in U.N. tribunal. Peacekeeping troops have been in the area of Kosovo, Serbia, and Montenegro for nearly a decade. They have been monitoring the citizens and trying to help quell hostilities between the groups. The DPKO has been observing talks between rivaling factions. In September 1998 France and Britain drafted U.N. resolution #1199, which demands a cessation of hostilities and warns that, "should the measures demanded in this resolution...not be taken...additional measures to maintain or restore peace and stability in the region" will be considered.

The condition of the Former Yugoslavia

Serbia will be holding elections in October of 2004. Kosovo Serbs have been called on to participated in these elections. There could be actions between ethnic groups to boycott or disrupt the election processes. Security in this region has greatly been tested after this March. Mitrovica, in Kosovo, experienced the worst ethnic violence in the region since the 1999 war. At least 22 people were killed, and another 500 were injured. Violence began after Serbs claimed a Serb teenager was the victim of a drive-by shooting and ethnic Albanians blamed Serbs for the drowning of several Albanian children. Ethnic skirmishes such as these can help to greatly destabilize a fledgling democracy.   In the next few years Serbia, Montenegro, and Kosovo shall all be able to fully establish themselves through referendum. This committee shall discuss and draft legislation about how to fully create these nations. Also we will be discussing ways to hold free elections and prevent these democracies from crumbling. Southeastern Europe is still in ruin, and continues to be a major problem for peace and security in the region. As these countries come closer to being reintroduced as nation states, the DPKO must play an active role in the creation, rebuilding, and overseeing of free elections in this region.

Further Informational Sites U.N. DPKO website CIA World Factbook Kosovo news United Nations Mission in Kosovo Kosovo Timeline CNN Website, good detailing EU and Kosovo relations

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