|Fact sheet released by the Bureau of European Affairs,
U.S. Department of State
Washington, DC, March 1, 1999
The Rambouillet Accords are a 3-year interim agreement that will provide democratic self- government, peace, and security for everyone living in Kosovo.
- Democratic self-government
- This will include all matters of daily importance to people in Kosovo, including education, health care, and economic development. Kosovo will have a President, an Assembly, its own courts, strong local government, and national community institutions with the authority needed to protect each community's identity.
- Security will be guaranteed by international troops deployed on the ground throughout Kosovo. Local police, representative of all national communities in Kosovo, will provide routine law enforcement. Federal and Republic security forces will leave Kosovo, except for a limited border protection presence.
- Mechanism for final settlement.
- An international meeting will be convened after 3 years to determine a mechanism for a final settlement for Kosovo. The will of the people will be an important factor at the international meeting.
During the interim period, citizens in Kosovo will govern themselves democratically through Kosovo institutions.
- Kosovo will have a Constitution. The Constitution calls for the democratic selection of a President, a Prime Minister and Government, an Assembly, and strong communal authorities. Kosovo will have its own Supreme Court, Constitutional Court, other courts, and prosecutors.
- Free and fair elections will be held within 9 months of entry into force, under the supervision of the OSCE.
- Kosovo will have the authority to make laws not subject to revision by Serbia or the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, including levying taxes, instituting programs of economic, scientific, technological, regional, and social development, conducting foreign relations within its areas of responsibility in the same manner as a Republic, and all matters of local government.
- Kosovo and its national communities will perform most functions presently handled by the Republic of Serbia. However, citizens in Kosovo will be able to call upon Republic institutions for assistance, if they wish. The Federal Republic will not be permitted to act in ways injurious to Kosovo.
- National communities in Kosovo will be able to control their own identities, including preserving their languages and operating schools and hospitals. All other authorities are forbidden from interfering.
- Human rights and the rights of the members of all national communities will be guaranteed.
- The international community will play a role in ensuring that these provisions are carried out, through a civilian Implementation Mission, an ombudsman and constitutional court judges selected under international auspices, OSCE supervision of elections, and an international military presence.
The Parties invite NATO to deploy a military force (KFOR), which will be authorized to use necessary force to ensure compliance with the Accords, protect international agencies involved with implementation, and provide a secure environment for everyone in Kosovo.
Security in Kosovo will be handled by KFOR. All other security forces will withdraw or be phased out under the supervision of KFOR, according to a balanced schedule of reciprocal steps by all sides specified in the Accords.
- Yugoslav army forces will withdraw completely from Kosovo, except for a limited border guard force (active only within 5 km border zone) and associated personnel.
- Serb security forces will withdraw completely except for limited number of border police and, for a transitional period, a limited number of civil police officers who will serve at the direction of the international Implementation Mission until local police are trained to replace them.
- The Kosovo Liberation Army will hand over security in Kosovo to NATO troops and will be demilitarized.
- Local police will take over all policing duties in Kosovo within 1 year, extendable for a limited period only by the Chief of the Implementation Mission.
A Mechanism For Final Settlement
Three years after entry into force of the Accords, an international meeting will be convened to determine a mechanism for a final settlement for Kosovo, on the basis of the will of the people, opinions of relevant authorities, each party's efforts regarding the implementation of the Accords, and the Helsinki Final Act.