Central level institutions

Central level institutions

Consultative Council for Communities

The purpose of the Consultative Council for Communities (CCC) is to “provide a mechanism for regular exchange between the Communities and the Government of Kosovo” and to “afford to the Communities the opportunity to comment at an early stage on legislative or policy initiatives that may be prepared by the Government, to suggest such initiatives, and to seek to have their views incorporated in the relevant projects and programs.” The CCC began in 2005 as an informal body attached to the Kosovo Delegation for Status Negotiations. The Council is located within the Office of the President and comprises mainly representatives of all minority communities in Kosovo and also representatives of the Government and other relevant public institutions. Its mandate is defined by Article 60 of the Constitution of Kosovo and the Law on the Protection and Promotion of the Rights of Communities and their Members in Kosovo.

Office for Community Affairs

The Office for Community Affairs (OCA) was established in 2008 under the Office of the Prime Minister to act as focal point for community issues within the government. Specifically, the OCA aims to assess the situation facing minority communities in Kosovo and advise the Prime Minister and the Government accordingly. Moreover, the OCA is mandated to monitor the impact of governmental policies on minority communities, increase awareness of community members on their rights and the government policies affecting them and support initiatives addressing identified needs of communities. It is also intended to act as a clearing house for the widespread distribution of communities-related policies and laws and raise awareness among all community members regarding their rights.

Office of the Language Commissioner

The Office of the Language Commissioner was established in April 2012 with the purpose of preserving, promoting and protecting the official languages – i.e. Albanian and Serbian – and their equal status in the Republic of Kosovo and its municipalities, while ensuring language rights to the Bosnian, Turk, Gorani, Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian communities, whose mother-tongues are not an official language.

The Language Policy Board, along with the Language Policy Network, is one of the supporting mechanisms of the Office of the Language Commissioner. The Board, composed of twenty members representing relevant institutions, experts and linguistic communities, provides institutional support for the development, implementation and enforcement of language policies, and the Commissioner is obliged to submit his report to the Board, as well as to the Government and the Assembly.

The Office of the Language Commissioner is also in charge of supervising the implementation of the Law on the Use of Languages and conducting investigations over received complaints related to the lack of equal recognition of the official languages, as well as languages of communities whose mother tongue in not an official language. Finally, the Language Commissioner is responsible for advising the Government and institutions regarding the use of languages.

Advisory Office on Good Governance, Human Rights, Equal Opportunity and Gender Issues

The Advisory Office on Good Governance, Human Rights, Equal Opportunities and Gender Issues (AOGG), operating under the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), has a mainly advisory and monitoring role vis-à-vis government ministries. Although it is not dedicated exclusively to the rights and interests of communities, it must involve and engage with communities in the context of its obligations to protect and address good governance, human rights, equal opportunities and gender issues. It should also be mentioned that AOGG has been assigned the key monitoring and coordinating role for the implementation of the Strategy for the Integration of Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian Communities in the Republic of Kosovo 2009-2015, a key instrument for the members of these communities.

Ministry for Communities and Return

The Ministry for Communities and Return (MCR) aims to protect the rights of minority groups and returnees, including the right to return, as defined in articles 3 and 4 of the Constitution of Kosovo. Its mandate covers a wide range of activities, including:

  • Creating favourable conditions for a sustainable return process by promoting trust, dialogue, and reconciliation among communities through various strategies and programs; and
  • Ensuring that policies at the central and local levels contain provisions to protect community rights, human rights and returnee interests, including free movement, use of minority languages, freedom of expression, equal representation, access to courts, housing rights and local services.

Committee on Rights and Interests of Communities and Returns

The Committee on Rights and Interests of Communities and Returns is a permanent committee of the Kosovo Assembly which acts as a safeguard for community interests in the legislative process. It is composed of Assembly members holding seats reserved or guaranteed for the Serb community, other non-majority communities and the majority community. It reviews legislation and makes recommendations based on the rights and interests of communities, and it can further propose laws to address the concerns of communities.