The success and failure of UNPOL mission in Kosovo and East Timor

Any citation taking from this article has to be cited accordingly. Failure to comply with the regulation may subject to copyright.

“It is the duty of United Nations is to make every international border a garden, a place of art and cultural festival.”

– Amit Ray –

 

This research will analyse UNPOL mission in Kosovo and East Timor based on the measurement of the quality of policing to examine the success and failure of both missions together with the finding of the existence of security-development nexus operating within the missions. According to Morgenthau (1963), an ideal police force, both domestic and international needs to have the capability to maintain law and order (Morgenthau, 1963: 395). As UNPOL was given task to created law and order in both Kosovo and East Timor, the capacity of UNPOL to establish law and order will be examined. The reason this research focus on UNPOL mission in Kosovo and East-Timor is because both cases are unique and could not be compared with others international police mission (Dwan, 2002: 123). Kosovo and East Timor have experienced peace enforcement operations that followed by neotrusteeship operations (Howard, 2014: 116). It has also brought challenge and difficulties to the international police regarding international law enforcement (Dwan, 2002: 123). Therefore, this research will first discuss the case of Kosovo and the case of East Timor. Each discussion will include the origins of the mission, and the successes and failures of the mission. The third part of the research will focus on the existence of the security-development nexus operating within the UNPOL mission in Kosovo and East Timor.

 

The Case of Kosovo

UNPOL Mission in Kosovo

The United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) was established under Security Council Resolution 1244 (Decker, 2006: 503) and passed on 10 June 1999. The situation in Kosovo at the time was chaos. There was a civil war and the country was divided – that caused the absence of the right authority to govern the country as well as law and order of institutions (Decker, 2006: 504). Measuring the chaos in Kosovo before the UN intervention, UNMIK has replaced the disorder with law and order (The Independent International Commission on Kosovo, 2000: 114). As re-establishing the rule of law in the society is crucial in order for the UN Police to work effectively (Cady and Booth, 2004: 77) the re-establishment of law and order with the creation of legal basis based on human rights in Kosovo – was seen as the main success of the mission. There is no doubt that UNPOL has played an important role in the establishment of the civilian law and order in Kosovo for four years (Decker, 2006: 514). The judicial system was created and has started to operate effectively in 2001 (Smith and Dee, 2003: 83). Moreover, UNMIK has successfully assigned international human right law into the applicable law in Kosovo (Cerone and Baldwin, 2004: 46), and it grew to be accepted by the citizens (Cerone and Baldwin, 2004: 47).

However, despite several achievements of the mission in Kosovo, it was difficult to see the whole mission as a success. Since the beginning of the UN Mission in Kosovo, it has faced excessively serious issues (Calic, 2000: 30). The slow deployment of UN Civilian Police (CIVPOL) was one of the main reasons why the UNMIK mission was obstructed (Decker, 2006: 502). In addition, it has been argued that the implication of human rights principle has not been treated equally to the minority. The UNMIK international judges and prosecutors was lacking the ability to develop the role of international human rights principles in the Kosovo legal system (Cady and Booth, 2004: 76) and the courts lack of resources and capacity to apply the principles to the citizens (Cerone and Baldwin, 2005: 57). Moreover, some argued that the UNMIK international judges and prosecutors have not contributed to promote the international human rights principles in Kosovan jurisprudence (Cady and Booth, 2004: 76).

 

Why it was a failure instead of success?

There are several reasons why the UN mission in Kosovo was a failure instead of success. Firstly, UNMIK mission was not fully functioning as it was expected to, because there has been confusion for both the international community as well as the citizens of Kosovo who was in charged (Howard, 2014: 121). There was uncertainty on who has the legitimate authority over the territory (The Independent International Commission on Kosovo, 2000: 100). According to the resolution, UNMIK was only authorized to create a legal framework, however it has exceeded its authority, by creating the constitutional framework for Kosovo. Both the UNPOL and the institutions of Kosovo self-government acted as they have the authority over the state and both sides have different approaches on how to govern the state. This has hampered the operation of UNMIK. In addition, diplomacy that was supposed to be carried out in the state was not successful (Demjaha, 2000: 41).

Secondly, although UNPOL could be argued has solved several issues in the short term, there was no plan on the outcome of Kosovo. As policing must also respond to conflicts in a long-term issue (Bowling and Sheptycki, 2012: 117), UNPOL mission in Kosovo has failed to qualify the statement. This has caused the on-going intervention that still happening without legitimate reasons rather than what it was ten years ago. With decision to intervene the state, the UN needs to be prepared for making a long-term commitment, which what they have failed to do (Decker, 2006: 513).

Furthermore, because there was uncertainty on how the outcome will be carried out, the case of Kosovo has been a problematic situation from the beginning. That was clear in the first instance that Kosovo will have an autonomous self-government, but no parties have clarified that Kosovo will have an option to gain full independence (Groom and Taylor, 2000: 303). The international community, including the Security Council was divided (Martin, 2001: 120). The issues have caused different reactions from different countries (Khutsishvili and Schnabel, 2000: 64). Although the UN resolution 1244 agreed by the US, and the rest of the Security Council, it did not resolve the disagreement on whether Kosovo should become a sovereign state or not, and how long the intervention will last (King and Mason, 2006: 73). The question whether Kosovo should be an independent state was still debatable and it leads into an on-going peacekeeping operations.

 

The Case of East Timor

UNPOL Mission in East Timor

Even before the major conflicts occurred in East-Timor, Indonesia has violated two fundamental norms of international law in the state, both the rule of self-determination and the rules on aggression (Clark, 1995: 65). This violation has been going on for almost twenty-four years. In 1999, attacks begun to occur in between the anti-independence militant on civilians and with the people of East Timorese that choose to be separated from Indonesia. The crisis occurred and brought attention to the international community. Although the crimes committed by the Indonesian were officially breaking the international law, there was a struggle in the international community to against Indonesia occupation (Lyons, 2004: 124). The Indonesian government at the time was fully against the UN intervention. Together with Australia, both governments did not allow peacekeeping operations in East-Timor, and even forbid the UN election monitors (Howard, 2014: 127). The defense argument was that the East Timorese people indicated their wishes to be a part of Indonesia (Clark, 1995: 75), and there was a long history in between two states that supported the argument (Clark, 1995: 81). Nevertheless, the legal support for the arguments does not exist (Clark, 1995: 100).

Although Indonesia actions have violated the international law since the beginning – from 1975 until 1999, there was no international action towards the territory. In the article 45, it was written that the Indonesian has no longer allowed to constrain the people of East Timor to swear its obedience to Indonesia (Machover, 1995: 213). However, there was no action from the United Nations and other influential states. Instead, Indonesia had the diplomatic support from excessively number of states, including Australia and the United States (Clark, 1995: 100). In December 1992, a group of international lawyers under the IPJET and the CIIR has discussed and come to the conclusion that Indonesia’s action in East Timor was illegal (Chinkin, 1995: 309). The twenty-four years of Indonesia occupation in East-Timor ended in 1999 – when the polling on August 30 shows that from 98.9 percent voter turnout, 78.5 percent of them voted to separate from Indonesia and gain its own independent (Howard, 2014: 127). Following the elections result, on the 25 October 1999, the Security Council certified the establishment of the United Nations Transitional Administration in East-Timor (UNTAET) under Resolution 1272 (Smith and Dee, 2003: 59).

In contrary, with the case of Kosovo that was mostly argued unsuccessful, the international community believed that the UN mission in East Timor has been successful (Smith and Dee, 2003: 17). After three-year of the neotrusteeship operation, the action was seen as a success (Howard, 2014: 132). When the UNTAET arrived, one of the main issues was how decide who is in responsible for the violations and how to bring justice in the region (Bertodano, 2004: 79). The fact that UNTAET was able to become de jure government of a damaged country (Smith and Dee, 2003: 59) has represented one of the main achievements of the mission. Moreover, the UNPOL has successfully brought the parliamentary elections in 2007 and managed the citizens to votes without major disruptions (Lemay-Hebert, 2009: 396). In 2002, East-Timor has finally gets their independent and has fully become a sovereign state.

 

Why it was a failure instead of success?

There are several reasons why the UN mission in East Timor was seen as a success rather than failures. Firstly, in the action of East-Timor, the UN was unified, did not have self-interested, it happened for a short-term, the neotrustee was well funded, ship mission espoused but not challenged in authority by INTERFET and the world Bank (Howards, 2014: 132). Differ with Kosovo case, international action in East Timor was under the full legitimacy of UN Security Council authorization (Martin, 2001: 119). Secondly, the case of East-Timor was clearer because the international community was not divided and the East Timor populations were not fighting against each other as they had united as a single political force with Gusmao as the leader (Howard, 2014: 128). Thirdly, it is important to note that the political situation in Indonesia was one of the main factors of the case. The political change taking place in Indonesia, after the fall of the Suharto regime – has proposed and agreed to the UN intervention in the country (Smith and Dee, 2003: 61). Since the fall of Suharto regime, the further presidents – Habbie, Wahid, and Megawati Sukarnoputri has acknowledged East Timor’s independence (Smith and Dee, 2003: 61). In the end, the achievement of the UN mission in East Timor has been argued to be a great example for future UNPOL action (Howard, 2014: 132).

 

The Existence of the Security-Development Nexus in the case of Kosovo and East Timor

Development and security is interconnected with each other (Duffield, 2010: 54). Under the Declaration of Human Rights, all individuals are subjected to human rights. This as well created each individual to become a subject of international law (Günther, 2005: 379). It has caused the focus of international security to transfer from states to the people, especially on fragile states (Duffield, 2010: 63). According to liberalism ‘people and governments are affected by what happens elsewhere, by the actions of their counterparts in other countries’ (Jackson and Sorensen, 2013: 106). This has represented the importance of maintaining security in different places in the world as well as in the international affairs because it will affect every state in different levels. As security and development is linked to each other, it is important to maintain security and development of fragile states in order to protect security of the West as well as the world order. This statement is supported by the fact that there was a promise that development could build international security (Duffield, 2010: 54). As civilian police forces is one of the most important security actors (International Peace Academy, 2004: 2), the role of UN Police is crucial to maintain security in the fragile states that indirectly will also protect the West security.

The nexus between development and security appeared in many of humanitarian interventions in the 1990s (Hettne, 2010: 31). Humanitarian intervention aim is to punish human rights abuses and encourage democracy as well as good governance (Hettne, 2010: 44). As good governance and nation-building of the development are now associated with security (Hettne, 2010: 44) – the UNPOL mission has shifted from peacekeeping mission into multiple peace operations – such as making preparations for elections, and creating a new governing institutions and systems as in Kosovo and East Timor (International Peace Academy, 2004: 3). In the case of both Kosovo and East Timor, protecting security is the main core of the mission, which under peacekeeping mission and once the security is secured the development of the state was taken under peace-building mission. At the same time, from the international actors perspective, preserving security in both states are also essential to protect security in the international affairs.

It has been commonly argued that to end wars in weak states is relatively easy, but to bring peace among the people is difficult (Duffield, 2010: 70). International actors are frequently diverse in term of having different policies and lacking of mutual strategic vision (International Peace Academy, 2004: 6). This appears mainly in the case of Kosovo as the outcome of the intervention was uncertain. Arguably, the international community has not come to an agreement whether the intervention should end or not. It is more likely that peace-building will be undermined by a hegemon or powerful states that prioritized their security (International Peace Academy, 2004: 4). The evidence of the statement appears in the case of Kosovo as it become the main objects of great state powers like, the European, United States as well as Russia, China and Indonesia (Groom and Taylor, 2000: 315). Giving sovereign authority to Kosovo will break the state of Serbia – and Russia, China, as well as Indonesia against the break up of Serbia. On the other hand, NATO allies such as the UK and the US fully support the independent of Kosovo. Hence, the international community is divided and has not reached a clear conclusion.

Moreover, humanitarian intervention has been taking place under the name of humanity and human rights (Hettne, 2010: 45). Some are disturbed by the fact that the military interventions that was under the name of protecting civilians from the violations of human rights, could lead into interventions motivated by other state priorities (International Peace Academy, 2004: 5). This implied in the case of East Timor. In 2006 another UNPOL mission was deployed in East-Timor. The mission was under the United Nations Integrated Mission in East Timor (UNMIT) that was established under the Resolution 1704. The UN requested to re-intervene the state to support the government of East-Timor including to carry the presidential and parliamentary elections. It has been argued that the deployment of UNMIT was under the request of East-Timor government. However, the Timorese leaders did not ask the UN to enforce the country again after the 2006 crisis (Lemay-Hebert, 2009: 397). Therefore it created speculation on the motives behind the mission. The evolution of political situations in East-Timor has presented a good opportunity for political manipulation of the security institutions (Lemay-Hebert, 2009: 395) both for the locals as well as the international actors.

Furthermore, the matter of fragile state, refugees and international criminality linked to the permanent emergency of self-reliance have replaced communism as the main threat to Western security (Duffield, 2010: 56). Although poverty did not directly cause several major issues in the international affairs such as refugee crisis in 1980s or international terrorism – to some extent poverty has come across as the root of each of the issues (Duffield, 2010: 61). This has lead to the conclusion that underdevelopment is dangerous (Duffield, 2010: 67). Therefore, maintaining security in underdeveloped country is crucial to protect security of the international affairs. In the case of Kosovo, the majority of NATO allies, this includes the UK and the US – give strong support towards the development of Kosovo together with the independent of the state. It could be argued that this support – other than merely for the people of Kosovo – was as well to protect security of the West as Serbia is a close ally of Russia. If Kosovo did not gain its independent, the case could lead into a similar situation with Ukraine. Meanwhile in the case of East Timor, it was evidently argued that the United States, Australia, European Union and other policymakers were interest on a stable and democratic Indonesia (Martin, 2001: 120). Additionally, the result of the intervention was different because of the focus of the international actors was also diverse. Other than China and Russia general opposition to the intervention, there was no special desire to protect Indonesia (Martin, 2001: 120). Hence the UNPOL mission in East Timor was more a success rather than in Kosovo. In Kosovo case, China and Russia played an important role as both support Serbia. Russia interests lay in the political situation of Serbia while China placed its interest in the economic status.

Nevertheless, it is important to note that the notion of human security itself was connected to human development as well as human rights (Hettne, 2010: 34). This explain the fact that the peacebuilding mission in Kosovo and East Timor includes the establishment of law and order based on human rights principles. UNMIK has succeed to assigned international human right law into the applicable law in Kosovo (Cerone and Baldwin, 2004: 56) while in East Timor, the rule of law was established to protect human rights (Smith and Dee, 2003: 89). Moreover, as according to Duffield (2010) underdevelopment was dangerous – the development discourse concerned is place with the poverty in the third world as it was one of the main security threats to liberal democracy (Hettne, 2010: 50). Hence, the UNPOL peacebuilding mission in both cases have emphasised on reducing poverty and provide a basic standard of living in both states. The key is that the way of life in the global south is related and connected to the security of the global north (Duffield, 2010: 68). Therefore, the promotion of democracy and universal human rights is crucial to both Kosovo and East Timor.

 

Conclusion

In conclusion, UNPOL has successfully re-establish the law and order with the basis of human rights in both Kosovo and East Timor. However, re-established law and order was not enough to conclude the whole mission as a success. The statement is supported by the fact that the status of Kosovo territory remains unresolved (Martin, 2001: 120). One of the major problems with Kosovo was the international community was divided. Furthermore, the existence of nexus between development and security appeared in many of humanitarian interventions in the 1990s (Hettne, 2010: 31), this has included both Kosovo and East Timor. For instance, the rule of law that was created in both states was to protect human rights, which secured the West interest. At the same time, UNPOL mission in both states was essential to reduce poverty – that arguably could be the root of several major issues in the international affairs. Therefore, to maintain security and development in Kosovo and East Timor was significant to protect security of the world order.

 

References

Bertodano, S. (2004). East Timor: Trials and Tribulations. In: Romano, C; Nollkaemper, A; Kleffner, J Internationalized Criminal Courts and Tribunals: Sierra Leone, East Timor, Kosovo, and Cambodia. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press. p79-97.

Bowling, B; Sheptycki, J (2012). Global Policing. London: Sage Publications.

Cady, J; Booth, N. (2004). Internationalized Courts in Kosovo: An UNMIK Perspective. In: Romano, C; Nollkaemper, A; Kleffner, J Internationalized Criminal Courts and Tribunals: Sierra Leone, East Timor, Kosovo, and Cambodia. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press. p59-78.

Calic, M. (2000). Kosovo in the twentieth Century: A Historical Account. In: Schnabel, A; Thakur, R Kosovo and the Challenge of Humanitarian Intervention: Selective Indignation, Collective Action, and International Citizenship. Tokyo; New York; Paris: United Nations University Press. p19-31.

Cerone, J; Baldwin, C. (2004). Explaining and Evaluating the UNMIK Court System. In: Romano, C; Nollkaemper, A; Kleffner, J Internationalized Criminal Courts and Tribunals: Sierra Leone, East Timor, Kosovo, and Cambodia. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press. p41-57.

Chinkin, C. (1995). Conclusion. In: CIIR; IPJET International Law and the Question of East Timor. Nottingham: Russell Press. p309-314.

Clark, R. (1995). The ‘Decolonisation’ of East Timor and the United Nations Norms on Self-Determination and Aggression. In: CIIR; IPJET International Law and the Question of East Timor. Nottingham: Russell Press. p65-102.

Decker, D. Christopher, (2006), Enforcing Human Rights: The Role of the UN Civilian Police in Kosovo, in International Peacekeeping, vol 13 (4), pp. 502-516.

Demjaha, A. (2000). The Kosovo Conflict: A Perspective from Inside. In: Schnabel, A; Thakur, R Kosovo and the Challenge of Humanitarian Intervention: Selective Indignation, Collective Action, and International Citizenship. Tokyo; New York; Paris: United Nations University Press. p32-43.

Duffield, M. (2010). The Liberal Way of Development and the Development-Security Impasse: Exploring the Global Life-Chance Divide. Security Dialogue. 41 (1), p53-76.

Dwan, R. (2002). Conclusions. In: Dwan, R Executive Policing: Enforcing the Law in Peace Operations. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press. p123-127.

Groom, A; Taylor, P. (2000). The United Nations System and the Kosovo Crisis. In: Schnabel, A; Thakur, R Kosovo and the Challenge of Humanitarian Intervention: Selective Indignation, Collective Action, and International Citizenship. Tokyo; New York; Paris: United Nations University Press. p291-318.

Günther, K. (2005). Word Citizens between Freedom and Security. Constellations. 12 (3), p379-391.

Hettne, B. (2010). Development and Security: Origins and Future. Security Dialogue. 41 (1), p31-552.

Howard, L. (2014). Kosovo and Timor Leste: Neotrusteeship, Neighbors, and the United Nations. The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. 656 (1), p116-135.

International Peace Academy. (2004). The Security-Development Nexus: Conflict, Peace and Development in the 21st Century [Online] Available at <https://www.ipinst.org/wp-content/uploads/publications/security_dev_nexus.pdf> [Aaccessed 29 April 2018].

Jackson, R; Sorensen, G (2013). Introduction to International Relations: Theories and Approaches, 5th ed, Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Khutsishvili, G; Schnabel, A. (2000). The Kosovo Conflict: The Balkands and the Southern Caucasus. In: Schnabel, A; Thakur, R Kosovo and the Challenge of Humanitarian Intervention: Selective Indignation, Collective Action, and International Citizenship. Tokyo; New York; Paris: United Nations University Press. p64-81.

King, I; Mason, W (2006). Peace at any Price: How the World Failed Kosovo. London: C. Hurst & Co Ltd.

Lemay-Hébert. (2009). UNPOL and Police Reform in Timor-Leste: Accomplishments and Setbacks. International Peacekeeping. 16 (3), p393-406.

Lyons, B. (2004). Getting Untrapped, Struggling for Truths: The Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation (CAVR) in East Timor. In: Romano, C; Nollkaemper, A; Kleffner, J Internationalized Criminal Courts and Tribunals: Sierra Leone, East Timor, Kosovo, and Cambodia. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press. p99-124.

Machover, D. (1995). International Humanitarian Law and the Indonesian Occupation of East Timor. In: CIIR; IPJET International Law and the Question of East Timor. Nottingham: Russell Press. p205-222.

Martin, I (2001). Self-Determination in East Timor: The United Nations, the Ballot, and International Intervention. Boulder; London: Lynne Rienner Publishers.

Morgenthau, Hans J. (1963). The Political Conditions for an International Police Force. International Organization, 17, pp 392-403.

Smith, M; Dee, M (2003). Peacekeeping in East Timor: The Path to Independence. Boulder; London: Lynne Rienner Publishers.

The Independent International Commission on Kosovo (2000). The Kosovo Report: Conflict, International Response, Lessons Learned. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press.

Featured Image taken from Google Search.

“Someone had to show them there was more to life than constant war, that was my mission.”

– R. Quejas-Risdon –

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s