UN Mission Brief Review

UNMOP – Prevlaka

Facts and Evaluation

  • United Nations Mission of Observers in Prevlaka came about on February 1, 1996 under UNSC resolution 11038 (1996).
    • Duration: February 1996 to December 2002
  • Observers had been deployed in the disputed region since October 1992.
    • Prior to 1996, the mission was under United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR) and United Nations Confidence Restoration Operation (UNCRO)
  • The trigger event could easily be considered the breakup of Yugoslavia and the resulting war.
    • During the Yugoslav Wars that followed, Croatian and Yugoslav forces either occupied or re-occupied the peninsula.  
  • There were 28 military observers; supported by 3 international civilian personnel and 6 local civilian staff.
    • Argentina, Bangladesh, Belgium, Brazil, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, Ghana, Indonesia, Ireland, Jordan, Kenya, Nepal, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Poland, Russian Federation, Switzerland and Ukraine all contributed military personnel.
  • This was considered an independent mission but UNMOP drew its administrative and budgetary support from United Nations Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina (UNMIBH)
    • According to the United Nations the financial figures for this mission have not been made available.
      • http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/missions/past/unmibh/facts.html
  • Fortunately, this mission did not incur any casualties

Written Evaluation

Thankfully, the specific UNMOP mission, within the overall Yugoslav conflict, did not have any casualties and was ended with great progress. The United Nations touts the success of UNMOP as,  “Throughout a turbulent decade in the Balkans, UNMOP contributed to insulating Prevlaka from the surrounding conflicts and tensions and ensured that hostilities nearby did not create instability on the peninsula. It demonstrated that even a small United Nations presence, properly conceived and executed, can make a difference,” (“UNMOP”). This is an accurate assessment of the Prevlaka mission. The United Nations facilitated and acted as a buffer between Croatia and Yugoslavia, specifically Montenegro.

Peace and demilitarization have been maintained since the end of the mission in 2002. The two states agreed on a temporary solution where Croatia gets the entire peninsula and some distance of sea belt into Boka Kotorska. The opposite side of the peninsula, facing Herceg Novi, would be considered no man’s waters. In 2008, a mixed commission was set up, ordered to formally resolve the border issue in the International Court of Justice. The two states have the options for bilateral talks or international arbitration. Both foreign ministers for Croatia and Yugoslavia, Tonino Picula and Goran Svilanovic, after signing a protocol on December 11, 2002, regarding the temporary regime set up post-UNMOP, were increasingly pleased with the situation moving forward. When considering the overall conflict, the success of Prevlaka showed that the two states could work together to solve what was considered a crisis point. Prevlaka, specifically UNMOP, can be considered a positive ordeal when contrasted with the overall Yugoslav Wars that saw war crimes involving mass raping and ethnic cleansing.

Works Cited

The United Nations. Department of Public Information, Department of Peacekeeping Operations. UNMOP. New York City: The United Nations, 2002. Web. <http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/missions/past/unmop/>.

“Yugoslav Daily Survey.” Ministry of Foreign Affairs of The Republic of Serbia. Republic of Serbia, 11 Dec 2002. Web. 17 Oct 2013. <http://www.mfa.gov.rs/Bilteni/Engleski/b111202_e.html/>.

“Milosevic: Important New Charges on Croatia.” HRW News. Human Rights Watch, 30 Oct 2001. Web. 17 Oct 2013. <http://www.hrw.org/en/news/2001/10/28/milosevic-important-new-charges-croatia>.

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