The Head of the EU Office in Kosovo/EU Special Representative, Ambassador Tomáš Szunyog, together with Kosovo Minister of Justice, the Chairs of the Judicial and Prosecutorial Councils as well as the Director of the Justice Academy, launched the European Union/Kosovo Justice Sector Programme. The project will be implemented until January 2024 and has a budget of 7 million Euros. The EU is currently investing around 50 million Euros in Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance funds into the rule of law in Kosovo.
The project will work with the Ministry of Justice, the Kosovo Judicial and Prosecutorial Councils and the Justice Academy as well as other key stakeholders in the sector. A key focus is on improving coordination in the justice sector and support to implementation of the Rule of Law sector strategy. A draft of this strategy has been put into consultation on 18 January. EU and other international partners have supported this initiative.
The programme aims at reforming the Kosovo justice system in line with European and international standards. It will assist institutions in the consolidation of the legal and institutional framework, strengthen the independence, impartiality, accountability, professionalism, quality, efficiency and transparency of the judiciary and also improve access to justice for every citizen, especially for women and disadvantaged or marginalised groups.
Ambassador Szunyog highlighted that an independent, impartial and professional justice system are the crucial elements for a democratic society and that the citizens of Kosovo had every right expect independent and professional rule of law institutions in service to them and that those institutions ensured their civil rights and to fight corruption and organised crime efficiently.
This project is implemented by the German Foundation for International Legal Cooperation (IRZ) as a leading partner together with the project partners: Center for International Legal Cooperation (CILC; Netherlands) and the Ministry of Justice of Croatia.