Americans first to withdraw their soldiers from KFOR
Željka Jevtić | 04. 05. 2012. – 02:00h | Foto: Reuters | Comments 0
At the moment there are about 6,000 soldiers in Kosovo/Metohija. In countries that they are coming from, there is pressure that they return home. The strongest criticism is in Germany, the country that presently has 1,900 of its soldiers deployed in KiM. The reason for cutting of contingent is in the costs. The American contingent shall most like be cut to minimum during next year.
However, permanent political and security instability is reality in Kosovo/Metohija and that is why the local Serbian population is of the opinion that cutting of the number of soldiers is a dangerous process. For example, there were almost no incidents in the Village of Osojane during presence of the Spanish contingent there. After the Spaniards left in 2008, thefts and attacks have become permanent. Few months ago a local Serb was killed.
The truth is that the KFOR remained in Kosovo/Metohija longer than initially planned. This UN mission is assigning its authorities in continuity onto local security bodies. The latest example is the case of the Devic Monastery earlier guarded by the French soldiers and today by Kosovo police.
‘There is permanent criticism that KiM costs more than it should. On the other hand the mission might turn out to fail since peace is not guaranteed here. Additional problem is that the present engagement of this number of soldiers is higher than it should be’, ‘Blic’ source from the mission says.
The question of engagement of the German soldiers is presently on agenda of the German Bundestag. In one of the most recent letters there is written that a part of German soldiers is under huge pressure because they have been deployed there for more than a year and a half. Kosovo Albanians do not hide that they would like the complete KFOR leave except the Americans whom they see as a guarantee for their safety. At the moment the American contingent has 600 soldiers and there is no doubt that their presence shall be cut to minimum.
‘The American contingent is not interested in taking part in daily activities of the KFOR. On the other hand however, Americans would like to keep their presence in Kosovo. Nevertheless, cutting of the number of soldiers can be expected next year after election of new administration’, Blic source says.
To Brussels there is another fact is far more important and it is that the EULEX mission has turned out to be unsuccessful. Also the communication between the KFOR and the EULEX is not at a desired level. As Blic learns, the KFOR does not restrain from sending such information in messages to its command….