KFOR started on 12th June 1999 when the Italian contingent entered Kosovo reaching Pec on 14th June. Since December 1998, on the framework of the "Joint (Determined)Guarantor" Operation (led by Ace Rapid Reaction Corps), the NATO troops have been deployed in the FYROM in order to guarantee and ensure:
- firstly the emergency evacuation of the OSCE observers from Kosovo;
- later the support to the humanitarian organizations for the assistance of the refugees that left Kosovo.
From September 1999 to the foundation of the NATO HEADQUARTERS TIRANA (NHQT) in June 2002, KFOR took on the responsibility of the NATO Italian-led operation in Albania called COMMUNICATION ZONE WEST" (COMMZ-W).
At the end of 2004, when the "Joint Forge" Operation in Bosnia-Herzegovina ended and the responsibilities of the military operations passed from NATO Forces (SFOR) to the European Union Forces (EUFOR), the NATO Authorities decided to group all the operations carried out by NATO in the Balkans in a unique operational context (defined by Joint Operation Area). In that way on 5th April 2005 the "Joint Enterprise" Operation started, including the KFOR activities, the interaction NATO-UE and the NATO HQ in Skopje, Tirana and Sarajevo.
In May 2006 a reorganization of the Forces deployed on the Kosovo territory began: the international military forces in Kosovo passed from 4 Multinational Brigades to 5 Multinational Task Forces.
Since 10th January 2010, the regulating level of the Multinational Task Forces was reduced to Multinational Battle Groups (MNBGs) on the Regiment basis, even if mission and tasks remained unchanged.
In spite of the gradual divestiture of the responsibilities and the progressive decrease of the Forces on the Theatre of Operations, now 31 Countries participate in the "Joint Enterprise" Operation in Kosovo, among which 23 Countries are NATO members, with the employment of about 5,000 units.
At present the mission Commander is Major General Michele Risi.
Since 1st March 2011 the KFOR disposition expects two Multinational Battle Groups, among which one is Italian-led, and a considerable reserve that includes the Carabinieri MSU Regiment. Some bodiea called JRD's (Joint Regional Detachment) have also been constituted aiming to monitor and connect all the organizations and civil authorities in the Country (Municipalities, Institutions, populations,etc). There are now 3 JRD's in Kosovo.
For further information, go to the Defence Website.