United States Department of Defense United States Department of Defense

News Release

Press Operations Bookmark and Share

News Release


Release No: 301-99
June 18, 1999


Attached is the agreement on Russian participation in KFOR, signed in Helsinki today by Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen and Russian Minister of Defense Igor Sergeyev and released at a joint press conference. Attachment one is the agreed principles for Russian participation in the international security force (KFOR) for Kosovo. Attachment two is a chart depicting the chain of command for the Russian participation in KFOR. Attachment three is a hand-drawn map of the proposed KFOR sectors not available at this site. Attachment four is the allocation of responsibilities between the Russian Federation Armed Forces and KFOR at Pristina (Slatina) Airfield. Attachment five is the timetable for the preparation for functioning and initiation of operations of the Pristina (Slatina) Airfield. Attachment six is the liaison arrangements for participation of Russian forces in KFOR.

Also provided at the joint press conference was a map of KFOR Sectors with Russian operating areas [http://www.defenselink. mil/news/#SLIDES], a slide summarizing the agreed upon principles [http://www.defenselink. mil/news/#SLIDES], and a fact sheet on highlights of the agreement are attached.

Agreed Points on Russian Participation in KFOR

It is agreed by the Secretary of Defense of the United States and the Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation:

To accept the Agreed Principles attached (attachment #1) as the basis for Russian participation in the international peacekeeping force (KFOR) in full compliance with UNSC Resolution 1244.

To provide for participation of one to two Russian battalions operating in Kosovska Kamenica in the US sector according to the attached command and control model (attachment #2). A Russian officer will serve as the Representative to the Sector Commander for Russian Forces.

Additionally, the US will recommend that NATO agree that Russian forces also participate in the KFOR forces deployed in the German and French sectors, also according to the command and control model attached (attachment #2), specifically that Russia provide one to two battalions to be part of the KFOR forces in the German sector, to operate in the area near Malisevo, and one battalion to the KFOR force in the French sector, to operate in the area near Lausa, both areas as shown on the attached map (attachment #3). A German company and a French company will also operate in the Malisevo and Lausa areas respectively. Russian officers will serve as Representatives for Russian Forces to the sector commanders in the German and French sectors, respectively.

The total Russian deployment in Kosovo will not exceed five battalions with a total strength not exceeding 2850 troops, plus up to 750 troops for the airfield and logistics base operations combined, plus 16 liaison officers. The level of Russian participation will be reduced in proportion to reductions in the overall size of KFOR.

To resolve the Pristina (Slatina) airfield issue on the basis of the allocation of responsibilities described in attachments #4 and #5. All KFOR participants will have access to the airfield, under procedures to be established by KFOR. Details to be determined by Commander, KFOR in consultation with Russian representatives.

That Russia will have the right to establish a logistics base with an appropriate site security force in the vicinity of the town of Kosovo Polje, as agreed with COMKFOR, to support Russian forces in KFOR.

To send a Russian military representative to SHAPE and to augment his staff and expand his responsibilities to include Russian participation in KFOR, and to establish liaison and planning cells at AFSOUTH and KFOR as rapidly as possible in accordance with attachment #6.

To convene consultations as soon as possible to develop details for implementation of these agreements.

That these points, including determination on which Sector the Russians will participate in, will be confirmed by the NAC for NATO and by the Government of the Russian Federation. The scheme of deployment of the Russian contingents of KFOR may be reviewed and adjusted in light of the prevailing circumstances by mutual agreement of the confirming parties, keeping in mind all aspects of a continued, appropriate Russian presence.

All command arrangements will preserve the principle of unity of command. It is understood that the Russian contingent in Kosovo will be under the political and military control of the Russian Command.






For the Department of Defense
of the United States of America
For the Ministry of Defense
of the Russian Federation



Helsinki, Finland June 18, 1999

(Attachment 1)


Subject to political review and approval by NATO and Russian authorities, the following principles are accepted as the basis for Russian participation in a militarily effective peace enforcement operation in Kosovo:

Common Mission/Purpose: Under the mandate of UNSCR 1244 taken under Chapter VII of the UN Charter and according to the principles therein, and within the framework of the Military Technical Agreement between KFOR and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, KFOR will deploy to establish a secure environment for the return of refugees and Internally Displaced Persons and to monitor, and if necessary enforce, compliance with the Military Technical Agreement and the demilitarization of the KLA. The participation of all national contingents in KFOR will be based on OPLAN 10413, Operation Joint Guardian.

Common Rules of Engagement: All contingents of KFOR will accept and operate under common rules of engagement to be applied impartially in all areas toward all parties without exception.

Unity of Command: All command arrangements will preserve the principle of unity of command. This presumes that the Russian side exercises full political and military control over the Russian contingent.

Single Airspace Management: All contingents of KFOR will operate under KFOR-established airspace and airfield management controls in accordance with agreements.

Single System of Ground Movement Control: All ground movement will be conducted under the KFOR movement control procedures in accordance with agreements. To this end, a Russian liaison group will be created for communication and coordination, in accordance with the attached Liaison Arrangements for Russian Forces in KFOR.

Intelligence Sharing and Exchange: Conducted as under IFOR and SFOR. Tactical mission-oriented information will be exchanged on an agreed basis.

Coordinated Public Information Process: Conducted as under IFOR and SFOR. Public information messages will be coordinated and public information products exchanged.

Single System to Coordinate National Logistics and KFOR Base Support: KFOR may assist in coordinating national logistics operations among national contingents. All contingents of KFOR are responsible for their financial and logistics commitments.



KFOR Freedom of Maneuver and Operation: In the case where a sector commander, or the commander of a national contingent within a sector, declines to accept an order from the KFOR commander, COMKFOR will have full authority to order other KFOR forces, from that sector, or any other sector, to carry out the mission, and those other forces will have full freedom of maneuver and operation throughout the sector in question, including the zone of responsibility of the sector commander or national contingent commander, who declined to accept the order.

Command Structure: The command structure depicted on the attached chart (Russian Participation in KFOR) will be the command structure for Russian participation in KFOR.

(Attachment 4)


Overall direction for the operation of the airfield and airspace in the KFOR AOR will be provided by the Director of Kosovo Air Operations working for the KFOR Commander.

The Chief of the Airfield, who carries out the functions enumerated in point 1 below, is a Russian officer, while the Chief of Air Movement, who carries out the functions enumerated in point 2 below, is a representative of NATO. They will carry out their functions in the name of the Director of Air Operations in Kosovo and KFOR Commander.

The Armed Forces of the Russian Federation will be responsible for:

Airfield Security

Airport Space Allocation

Ramp Management

Runway Inspection/ Maintenance

Taxiway Inspection/ Maintenance/FOD

Airfield Lighting

Public Works/ Utilities

Protocol (including linguistics)

Public Affairs

General Purpose Transportation

General Purpose Vehicle Maintenance/ Fuels

Aircraft Fuels/Refueling for Russian aircraft

The Representative of NATO will be responsible for:

Approach Control

Tower Services (includes Ground Control)

Flight Planning/ NOTAMs

TERPs (if/ as required)



Approach Lighting

Aerial Port Operations (Cargo and Passenger)

Aircraft Fuels/ Refueling for non-Russian aircraft

Crash/ Fire Protection

In each of the created functions assigned to NATO, a group of Russian representatives will be created. Detailed development of plans for these representatives will be accomplished after the Russian aviation group arrives at Pristina Airfield.

The number of Russian Federation Armed Forces for performing their assigned tasks shall be determined on the basis of NATO-accepted standards.

(Attachment 5)

Time Table for the Preparation for Functioning and Initiation of Operations of the Pristina (Slatina) Airfield

Graphic of Tentative Time Line for Bringing Slatina Airfield into Operation (D-Day is the day where there is an exchange of notes accepting the agreement)

3 3 6

Event: 1 2 2 4 5


Day: D +1 +2 +3 +4 +5 +6 +7 +8 +9 +10 +11 +12



  1. Obtain Hungarys clearance for overflight of its territory for initial flights; remove all obstacles at the airfield; give UK access to all parts of the airfield.
  2. Arrival, in no more than six IL76 aircraft, of Russian administrative team and essential airfield equipment. Arrival, in no more than six IL76 equivalent aircraft, of NATO air movement personnel and equipment. No further flights into the airfield until general opening.
  3. Work in preparation for the start of the operation of the airbase.
  4. Upon certification of airfield safety for operation, begin routine air operations and provide access for all KFOR forces to the airfield with consent of COMKFOR. U.S./NATO will assist in obtaining clearances for further Russian overflight of foreign airspace with respect to deployments to Kosovo and back consistent with the Cohen/Sergeyev Agreed Points on Russian Participation in KFOR.
  5. Delivery of necessary equipment and Russian airfield teams (detachments).
  6. Deployment of airfield equipment to support full scale functioning.

(Attachment 6)


The following details the agreed liaison arrangements for Russian Forces in KFOR:

a. Russia will return the Russian Military Representative to SHAPE, augment his staff and expand their responsibilities to include Russian participation in KFOR. The Russian representation will consist of up to 10 officers.

b. Russia will establish a liaison group with HQ AFSOUTH. The Russian liaison group will consist of three officers.

c. Russia will temporarily establish a liaison group with CAOC to coordinate the initial strategic deployment of Russias peacekeeping contingent.

d. Russia will establish a military representative at KFOR HQs for matters pertaining to the planning and employment of Russian peacekeeping contingent in KFOR:

-for planning (3-4 officers)

-for support (3-4 officers)

-for coordination of Russian activities in KFOR brigade zones (2-3 officer per zone where Russian peacekeeping contingent are located)

Additional Links

Stay Connected