Pristina, – The Italian Major General, Franco Federici has handed over the post of KFOR Commander to the Hungarian Major General, Ferenc Kajári, during a ceremony held at KFOR's headquarters in Pristina. Major General Kajári is the first Hungarian officer to take over the command of NATO's peacekeeping mission in Kosovo for a year as KFOR's 26th Commander.
Admiral Robert P. Burke, Commander of NATO Joint Force Command Naples, presided over the ceremony, and took the opportunity to express his appreciation to the outgoing COMKFOR, Major General Federici for leaving an indelible impact on this essential mission. "General, I'm proud of how you led your team through this period, and of what you have achieved during your time in command. Your clear vision enabled KFOR to press forward with the larger mission and truly embodied the motto, "As One We Progress."
COM JFC Naples also welcomed the new COMKFOR, Major General Ferenc Kajári, adding that the experience General Kajári brings is as broad as it is relevant to the nature of this mission.
During his speech, General Federici expressed his thanks to all his staff and collaborators who facilitated him carry out his duties with utmost dedication, commitment, empathy, and impartiality. "I believe I was able to accomplish the tasks given by my chain of command and the ones that I envisioned for my tenure, always for the best interests of NATO, KFOR, and the stability of the region," said General Federici.
Whereas, General Kajári revealed the new motto of KFOR XXVI – Duty, Reliability and Commitment. "I consider these values crucial for KFOR as well. I pledge to follow the path that my predecessors extraordinarily paved in the past years. I consider it as my Duty to lead KFOR on this path to maintain its Reliability fulfilling the mandate and to remain Committed to further peace and stability in Kosovo," General Kajári noted.
The ceremony was attended by local and international representatives, despite some restrictive but necessary security measures due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
COVID-19 pandemic has been a challenge that affected many aspects of the operation during the last year, both in terms of safety for KFOR personnel as well as in terms of offering support to the local institutions involved in fight against the virus. Nevertheless, during General Federici's mission, KFOR continued strengthening its cooperation with the Institutions in Kosovo, the International Community and all security organizations to fulfil the mandate established by United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244 of 1999 and contributed to fostering inter-ethnic coexistence and developing the security framework for dialogue.