Press Releases

    23 September 2004

    Secretary-General Says Consultations on Kosovo “Candid and Constructive”, Broad Agreement Reached on Integrated Strategy

    NEW YORK, 22 September (UN Headquarters) -- Following is the statement by Secretary-General Kofi Annan following consultations with key Member States and partner organizations in Kosovo on 20 September:

    The violence that swept Kosovo in March of 2004 took the entire international community by surprise. I asked Ambassador Kai Eide to undertake a comprehensive political assessment of the situation in Kosovo. He presented his report to me on 23 July after which I transmitted it to the Security Council, Contact Group Member States, and to our partner organizations in Kosovo -- the European Union, Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). At that time, I expressed my intention to revert to the Council with recommendations on the way forward in Kosovo in the near future, following consultations with key Member States and regional partner organizations.

    As part of these consultations, we met with key Member States, and with the leadership of the European Union, NATO and the OSCE, in two meetings on 20 September. In addition, my new Special Representative for Kosovo, Soren Jessen-Petersen, and Ambassador Eide participated in the meetings.

    These candid and constructive meetings resulted in a general understanding of, and support for, an integrated strategy.  There was broad agreement on the need to focus on the economy and on security, the need to engage with Belgrade and to bring the Kosovo Serbs into the process, and the importance of the standards process. We will be working with the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) to identify areas of further transfer and modalities for deeper engagement with the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government (PISG). To implement this, a more coherent capacity-building policy will be essential. This transfer policy cannot work without accountability and uniformity of application on the part of the PISG.

    I will now consider the results of these consultations, and the views expressed by others, in preparing my recommendations to the Security Council on this matter.

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