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          • Year: 2009
          • About the Draft of the Law on usage of the Army of Serbia in multinational operations

          • 08. april 2009. Marko Milošević, Research Fellow of the Centre for Civil – Military Relations

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          Ministry of Defense prepared the Draft of the Law on usage of the Army of Serbia and defense forces in Multinational Operations abroad. How do you comment this draft, if we know that once the former SFRY was one of the leading countries in the peacekeeping operations of the UN? For example, only in Sinai mission, more than 22,000 soldiers of the YNA participated during the period of 11 years.

           

          The Draft of the Law on usage of the Army of Serbia and defense forces in Multinational Operations abroad represents a considerable improvement in comparison to the former Law on participation of the Professional Members of the Army of Serbia and Montenegro, members of the civil protection and the employees of the administrative bodies of the Council of ministers in the peacekeeping operations and other activities abroad (“Official Gazette of Serbia and Montenegro“, no 61/2004) in the area of legal and health protection of the members of these missions.

          Instead of former term “peacekeeping operations” the new law introduces the term “multinational operations”, defined later in the Law as the operations “of preservation, maintaining, building and introduction of peace, as well as the conflict prevention, joint defense operations, reducing international terrorism consequences and participation in humanitarian operations”. The wide specter of operations as such also includes combat operations (peace introduction), what was not foreseen by the former legal solutions.

          New Draft of the Law is based both on the National Security Strategy and the Defense Strategy, as well on the Defense Strategic Review. The problem lays in the fact that these strategic documents are not yet adopted in the National Parliament of Serbia.

          Other potential inconsistency is connected with the strategic positioning of Serbia. The engagement in the multinational operation could be in the contradiction with the Declaration on Military Neutrality, although the legislation had left enough space for the National Parliament of the Republic of Serbia to opt at the certain moment for the path of the Euro Atlantic integration.

          The Draft defines that the missions can be only composed by the professional members of the Army. The members of the active reserve, as well as the members of police and civil protection forces, could be included only in the case of emergency situations. Soldiers on the regular military service could not participate in the missions.

          Participation in the missions is not based on the voluntary principle. The official bodies recommend the structure of the mission in question to the Chief of General Stuff.

          ("Borba" daily newspapers, April 8th, 2009)

          Translated by Igor Novakovic, CCMR Intern

        • Tags: missions, operations, multinational, army, Serbia, participation, Defense Ministry, Law
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