European Union scales down rule of law mission in Kosovo

The European Union is scaling down its rule of law mission in Kosovo which helped guide the territory to independence after it unilaterally broke away from Serbia a decade ago.

The EU's European Council said Friday that the mission known as EULEX would hand over to local authorities the tasks of its judges and prosecutors operating in Kosovo, with Kosovo to "assume responsibility for all transferred investigations, prosecutions and trials."

From June 14, EULEX will monitor selected cases and trials, monitor and mentor prison authorities and provide support in EU-backed talks aimed at smoothing ties between Serbia and Kosovo. This new, limited mandate has been extended until June 14, 2020.

Kosovo had requested that EULEX be phased out and take on a monitoring and advisory role.