In the fictional United Nations headquarter, UNAMIB, Kristina Simion is the Rule of law officer during VIKING11. She is a part of a team who try to incorporate a judicial perspective in to the operation. Kristina explains:
-We are working with the development of the role of law in the scenario. And we try to improve and establish justice for the people of Bogaland.
As a part of Folke Bernadotte Academy’s Rule of Law team, Kristina Simion works with research and policy development of rule of law. She considers their work a useful tool for this kind of exercises, as well as for real missions.
- We research policy development in the field, and as a result our theories are applicable to peace operations and state building, she says.
The VIKING exercise is now ongoing and the scenario is constantly changing.
- At this moment, we are researching about the existing legislation and courts in the fictional area. There is no clear source of information, and we need to start at the lowest level to see what actually exist. The circumstances can often be very hard, and a corrupt justice system is not unusual to find in this kind of area.
An important cooperation partner for the rule of law team is the local government, especially the Ministry of Justice. Another important partner is Non governmental organisations, NGO’s, as they often have been in the region longer and have an understanding of the situation. State building requires cooperation with the local population, and a transfer of knowledge from those in charge of building up the security sector to the public administration and judiciary. This is why civilian-military-police exercises such as VIKING11, present a realistic environment to practice within.
A short summary of the role of law’s role and mission is as follows:
- Our work is to create justice for the people by establishing the rule of law in an area, says Kristina Simion.