What is state failure? See my conceptualisation of state failure on the right flank below.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

EUFOR gains room to maneouvre at a crucial time

MStFB News Commentary
Just a short piece of news I wish to comment on, included here from the Southeast European Times:

"Montenegro, EUFOR seal accord allowing troops' transit
08/05/2007
PODGORICA, Montenegro -- Foreign Minister Milan Rocen sealed a technical co-operation agreement with EUFOR on Monday (May 7th) that allows the transit of EU troops from Bosnia and Herzegovina via Montenegro to Kosovo and vice versa. Rocen and EUFOR Commander Rear Admiral Hans-Jochen Witthauer said the accord demonstrates Montenegro's support of EU efforts to promote regional peace and security. (Vijesti - 08/05/07; RTCG, Fena - 07/05/07)"

One wonders at the EU's strange ways at times.
Before last spring they were worried about what Montenegro's independence would create in terms of spill-over effects as an inspiration to would-be mini-statelets' quest for statehood. They did so, forgetting about the so-called Arbitration Commission of the Peace Conference on the former Yugoslavia, more simply known as the Badinter Committee, which produced recommendations in 1991 with which Montenegro's independence would have been perfectly compatible already back in the 1990s - given that the gradually expanding independence movement sought independence there not with the aim of ethnic self-determination, but on the behalf of the people of a former constituent republic of Yugoslavia (a multi-ethnic one, by-the-way). This official worrying has given ground to some people, ironically both in Kosovo and in the Republika Srpska in Bosnia, to call Montenegro's independence referendum a kind of 'precedent', whereas speaking in a legal sense it couldn't really be one (although I guess I might run into the odd lawyer here, who'll convince me that black has always been white, and vice versa).
And then, now, the EU seems happy to be able to strike an accord like the above mentioned one, for EU forces in the region, taking advantage of the comfort of having an unquestionably loyal leadership in Podgorica, one that is interested mostly in an investor-friendly and tourism-attracting, stable regional environment.
One of course cannot criticise the EU too much for its inconsistencies, once the end result is still that it is currently in the position where it wants to be. It's just that things were made a bit more 'exciting' the way they've been handled.

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