Mr. Chairman, Dear Colleagues, Ladies and Gentlemen
First I would like to thank Minister Kanat Saudabayev and the whole Kazakh team for organising today’s meeting.
Based on the OSCE’s 35 years of experience, we have learned that there is no security without respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. This is why the human dimension commitments have to be on top when shaping our agenda. Furthermore, we should establish better implementation of these commitments, and explore ways to further enhance them -- for example, in the fields of freedom of expression and freedom of the media, as well as gender equality.
In order to move ahead, however, we have to focus on our most serious security concern, namely the protracted conflicts in the OSCE area, and deliver some real progress in regard to the settlement of the Georgian, Transnistrian, and the Nagorno-Karabakh conflicts. The agreement to reinstate a meaningful OSCE presence in Georgia has remained an unsolved issue for far too long.
Today’s touchstone for the OSCE is to demonstrate its capability to be the main player in ensuring stability, rule of law and democracy in Kyrgyzstan. Therefore we support the efforts of the Chairmanship to send a Police Mission to Kyrgyzstan as soon as possible. Now the biggest challenge of all is to produce real and tangible results in resolving the protracted conflicts as well as avoiding emerging ones.
To cover the entire conflict cycle, our capacities must be strengthened. This includes early warning, conflict prevention and resolution, crisis management, and post-conflict rehabilitation. The same goes for the conventional arms control framework.
When addressing the overall security environment, transnational threats have to stay in our focus, including those stemming from Afghanistan. Deeper engagement and better cooperation in that respect is crucial, just like it is in tackling other global concerns. Having said that, I am pleased to note that the enhancement of cyber security has become more and more important also in the OSCE. I hope that we will all remain continuously engaged in this field.
In a run-up to the proposed OSCE summit, it is important to focus on consensus-building and to put together a substantial agenda proposed by the EU countries. As we are summoned here today to discuss our future course, I hope we are able to find a consensus on our priority deliverables.
On that path there are two essentials we should build on. First, we have to take fully into account the greatest asset of our organisation - a comprehensive approach to security. The second warrant to success is our core values enshrined in the Helsinki Final Act that have served us firmly for 35 years. There is a saying: “A wise man builds his house upon a rock, and not upon sand, where it could easily fall.”