The President of the Republic of Kosovo, Madam Atifete Jahjaga has attended today the ceremony of the change of the Kosovo Security Force commander. On this occasion she held a speech, which is brought below:
Honored representatives of the institutions of the Republic of Kosovo,
Honored members of the Kosovo Security Force,
Honored representatives of NATO and international missions in Kosovo,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The Kosovo Security Force is among the most respected and credible institutions of our state. In its ranks young men and women are listed in, the most loyal and devoted citizens of this country, who with diligence are participating in the state-building process.
The KSF development is closely linked to Kosovo’s path to freedom, independence and democracy. Its name and mission carries with it our intention to create the complete security infrastructure. With this, we are creating the conditions enabling the development of the responsible institutions in the service of all the citizens, regardless of ethnicity, religion or race.
Under the care of NATO and specialized organizations like the American National Guard, KSF is building its own capacities to educate new cadres according to high international standards, in order that in the near future to become part of peacekeeping and humanitarian missions in the world.
The Republic of Kosovo welcomes the support in the further building of the KSF towards its goal to become part of the Partnership for Peace full rights member of NATO. In our Euro-Atlantic integration, you will be an important mechanism of the enforcement of defense and security policies our country and of the engagement and contribution of the Republic of Kosovo in joint missions with the international strategic partners.
In the context of our strategy to establish armed forces, you have already created the foundation of the security structure and are willing to take all responsibilities, duties and obligations that the country requires from you. Armed forces in the democratic world are put in the service of the citizens and the country. They are ready to intervene wherever need arises to help the citizens within an interweaving of civilian emergency mission with a protective and preventive military mission. The armed forces now have an extraordinary and irreplaceable role in national security.
Today this shift of command ceremony is a major achievement of the Kosovo Security Force.
In this case we express gratitude to Lt. Gen. Sylejman Selimi for his exemplary leadership, his dedication and professional commitment in the construction and strengthening of this force. For your contribution and performance, as President of the Republic of Kosovo I decorate the up to date KSF commander, Lieutenant General Selimi with the Golden Medal of Freedom.
I, the President of the country, Supreme Commander of the Kosovo Security Force, with a special decree have appointed major general Kadri Kastrati commander of the Kosovo Security Force.
My support for the Kosovo Security Force, for you soldiers, noncommissioned officers and officers, will be permanent and unreservedly as a constitutional and legal obligation, to your growth, transformation and strengthening.
As an institution you have gathered within us the best sons and daughters of this country. Guided by respect, honor and pride you have the confidence of the people, the institutional support and you present the success of our state building.
We are building a new vision for our country and our people, the vision of a stable force with a clear and prosperous future.
We are giving the best example of cooperation in the region and are transforming into a bridge which connects peoples and places, giving a particular dimension to security and defense mechanisms built on the values of civic dignity.
The Kosovo Security Force is becoming the embodiment of the ideals in Kosovo and an important mechanism of cooperation with international security and the protection, in the interest of the country, peace and stability in the region and the world.