316. NATO took the unprecedented action of
bombing an internationally recognised European state in defence
of the rights of a large minority within that state. As a result
these rights have been restored.
317. However, the objective of establishing
a multi-ethnic Kosovo society within a democratic Yugoslavia remains
unachieved. Milosevic remains in power.
318. In the meantime, as a result of NATO
action, the UN has been compelled to assume virtually unprecedented
responsibility for the governance of a province. It has to establish
all the basic requirements of a civilised society, an economy
and a currency, institutions to uphold law and order and to deliver
the whole range of services necessary to society.
319. This is a formidable challenge which
deserves the full support and attention of the international community.
We are concerned that the attention span of the international
community is short. There is a tendency to act immediately and
then move on, leaving the UN to bear the longer-term consequences.
320. This should not happen in Kosovo. NATO,
with the support of the European Union, authorised the action
taken in Kosovo outside the terms of the UN Security Council.
NATO and EU states, therefore, more than the UN, have a very specific
and heavy responsibility to establish long term stability and
peace in Kosovo and in the region.
321. We have made a commitment to Kosovo.
Unless we fulfil that commitment, and build peace in Kosovo and
the region, our efforts to date will have been in vain.