Since October 2020, the IRZ has been spearheading the implementation of the large-scale EU-funded grant project "European Programme/ Kosovo Justice Reform (EUKOJUST)" in an international consortium with Dutch partners CILC and the Ministry of Justice and Public Administration of the Republic of Croatia (MoJPA).

EUKOJUST has a volume of €7 million and a term of 40 months, and supports Kosovo's institutions to implement judicial reform and the Rule of Law Strategy, which emerged from a previous comprehensive review of the judicial sector in Kosovo.

EUKOJUST aims to bring Kosovo's judicial system in line with European and international standards and to strengthen the trust of the population in the judicial system. It also builds on the results from previous projects and implements consolidated and needs-oriented reform initiatives for the entire judicial sector under one umbrella organisation.

The beneficiaries of the project include the Ministry of Justice, the Kosovo Prosecutorial Council, the Kosovo Judicial Council, the Kosovo Judicial Academy, the legal department offices of the Prime Minister’s office, the staff of courts and public prosecution offices and independent legal professions, as well as judges, public prosecutors and also civil society organisations in the judicial sector.

The EUKOJUST project team consists of a 19-member international team, numerous international and national experts on site managed by the team leader, and implements a range of scheduled activities. It aims to strengthen capacity and inter-institutional coordination in the judicial sector, promote the independence and transparency of the judiciary, consolidate and align the legal and institutional framework, and to improve access to justice, in particular for women and marginalised or disadvantaged groups.

A project steering committee comprises representatives of the EU Delegation in Kosovo, the individual Kosovar ministries and the consortium members of the IRZ, CILC and the Croatian Ministry of Justice. The committee meets at regular intervals and steers and monitors the progress of the project.

Funded by the European Union

Expert discussion on a “specific judicial review”


On 22 February 2022, the IRZ and the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kosovo, organised an online expert discussion on the theme of "specific judicial review".

Gresa Caka-Nimani, President of the Constitutional Court, Enver Peci, President of the Supreme Court and Frank Hupfeld, IRZ, opened the event, which included over 45 judges and academic staff of the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court. In their opening speeches, the speakers emphasised the importance of the German-Kosovar exchange of expertise and experience in view of the comparatively recent case law history of the Kosovo Constitutional Court.

Radomir Laban, judge at the Kosovo Constitutional Court, first presented the legal framework and practice of the Constitutional Courts in managing a specific judicial review. On the basis on a detailed presentation of the seven judgments that have had legal effect to date, he discussed the case law of the Kosovo Constitutional Court with respect to the admissibility requirements of a specific judicial review. Shukri Sylejmani, judge at the Supreme Court, then examined the procedure for the specific judicial review from the perspective of the referring court. In addition to the role and requirements of the courts and parties, he also set out the challenges that arise in this context.

Following the Kosovar lectures, a number of speakers, on behalf of the IRZ, Prof. Dr. Dr. hc. Gertrude Lübbe-Wolff (former judge of the Federal Constitutional Court / Professor of Public Law at Bielefeld University) and Prof. Dr. Michael Eichberger (former judge of the Federal Constitutional Court / Honorary Professor at Eberhard-Karls University of Tübingen) outlined the German legal framework, practice and experience with the specific judicial review. Prof. Dr. Lübbe-Wolff first placed the instrument of specific judicial review in its historical and comparative legal context, and presented the procedure to the Federal Constitutional Court. Prof. Dr. Eichberger examined the subject matter of admissibility requirements and the scope of the review in more detail, and explored the potential content and effects of decisions during a specific judicial review before the Federal Constitutional Court.

The virtual expert discussion was characterised by the active participation of the participating judges and an overall very open and trusting atmosphere. The participation of German experts enabled the participants to take a comprehensive look at the legal foundations, procedural processes, admissibility requirements and handling of the specific judicial review in Kosovo with reference to German legal practice. The exchange of expertise and experience between the German and Kosovar judges and legal practitioners also offered the opportunity to identify best practices and approaches to solutions for the Kosovar context along with the challenges.

Roundtable Discussions on cross-sectoral Cooperation regarding alternative Penalties and Measures


In 2021, IRZ continued its successful cooperation with the country's regional probation services in Kosovo. In the course of three online roundtables with changing groups of participants from the regions of Pristina, Prizren, Mitrovica, Peja and Gjilan, a lively and trusting exchange took place. The focus was on alternative measures and penalties in the area of juvenile criminal law.

The first day of each event was dedicated to cross-sectoral cooperation between the judiciary, the public prosecutor's office and the probation service and, in addition to the function and legal basis of the suspended sentence, addressed probation supervision in practice. 

Participants were:

  • judges,
  • public prosecutors,
  • probation officers and

They had the opportunity to take a closer look at current challenges, best practices as well as the interaction of the institutions responsible for alternative measures. 

The second day of the event offered the representatives of the regional probation offices the opportunity for an in-depth and practical discussion on the organisation, role and tasks of probation officers, especially in dealing with juvenile offenders. The focus was on the topics of social reintegration, prevention of recidivism and transition management, taking into account special problem situations such as unemployment, indebtedness, domestic violence or lack of family structures.

From the German side, a team of experts led through the series of events:

  • Senior Public Prosecutor Michael Grunwald, Public Prosecutor's Office of Berlin
  • Public Prosecutor Matthias Betschner, Public Prosecutor's Office of Duisburg 
  • Judge Alexander Conrad, Local Court of Oberhausen 
  • Stefan Thier, Ministry of Justice, Europe and Consumer Protection of the State of Schleswig-Holstein
  • Probation Officer Viola Würffel, Head of Security Management, Social Services of the Judiciary of Berlin

In addition to an intensive and practice-oriented exchange of expertise and experience, the roundtable discussions financed by the Federal Foreign Office made it possible, above all, to create a broader network between probation services, judges and public prosecutors in the various regions. The total of six days of events were characterised by lively and committed discussions and met with a very positive response from all participants.