The Kosovo Force (KFOR) is a NATO-led international peacekeeping force which is responsible for establishing a safe and secure environment and freedom of movement for all in Kosovo. Its operations are being gradually reduced as Kosovo's Security Force, established in 2009, becomes self sufficient.
The KFOR has gradually transferred responsibilities to the Kosovo Police and other local authorities. As of February 2019, 28 states contribute to the KFOR, with a combined strength of more than 3,500 military and civilian personnel.
NATO's initial mandate in 1999 for the KFOR was:
to deter renewed hostility and threats against Kosovo by Yugoslav and Serbian forces;
to establish and maintain a secure environment in Kosovo, including public safety and civil order;
to demilitarize the Kosovo Liberation Army;
to support the international humanitarian effort;
to co-ordinate with and support the international civil presence.
Today, KFOR focuses on building a secure environment in which all citizens, irrespective of their ethnic origins, can live in peace and, with international aid, democracy and civil society are gradually gaining strength. KFOR tasks have included:
assistance with the return or relocation of displaced persons and refugees;
reconstruction and demining;
security and public order;
security of ethnic minorities;
protection of patrimonial sites;
interdiction of cross-border weapons smuggling;
implementation of a Kosovo-wide weapons, ammunition and explosives amnesty program;
support for the establishment of civilian institutions, law and order, the judicial and penal system, the electoral process and other aspects of the political, economic and social life of the province.
The Contact Group countries have said publicly that KFOR will remain in Kosovo to provide the security necessary to support the provisions of a final settlement of Kosovo's status.