Filmmaker: Marc Schmidt

In the aftermath of decades of war and instability, the real estate market in Kosovo is chaotic, with the rightful ownership of tens of thousands of houses disputed.

It is a problem that the EU is engaged in sorting out as part of Western ambitions to modernise the Balkans.

A mission, called EULEX, has been charged with bringing in judges, police functionaries and customs officers from EU countries, to help the Kosovars re-establish the rule of law, as a first step to transforming this new country into a modern European democracy.

Angela's Mission follows Dutch judge Angela Kaptein, who is tasked with resolving property disputes, during her one year stay in Kosovo. It is a tricky job that involves liaising with the local judge and property owners - all via an interpreter.

Angela's Mission offers an insight into the pitfalls encountered during the process of nation-building and tells a universal story about the meeting of cultures. It also looks at the aspirations of a united Europe and the practical difficulties of bringing these lofty ideals to pass.

This episode of Witness aired from June 6, 2010.

Source: Al Jazeera