OSCE Secretary General speaks at ADA University - EXCLUSIVE | Eurasia Diary - ednews.net

24 July, Wednesday

OSCE Secretary General speaks at ADA University - EXCLUSIVE

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In the framework of his official visit to Azerbaijan, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Secretary General Thomas Greminger spoke at ADA University on the topic, “The OSCE as a Platform for Renewing Dialogue and Rebuilding Trust”.

Eurasia Diary reports that the meeting was attended by the representatives of foreign diplomatic missions in Azerbaijan, civil society organizations, professors, staff members and students of ADA University. Vice-Rector of ADA University Fariz Ismailzade acted as a moderator. The event was also attended by the Permanent Representative of the Republic of Azerbaijan to OSCE Galib Israfilov.

Thomas Greminger highlighted the advantages of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe and the main challenges that it faces.

“Eurasian security is under tremendous threat. Military conflicts as a leverage and military predictability, nationalist and populist rhetoric, identity-based politics, distrust both between states and between societies are everywhere in the world. The OSCE is an ideal platform for renewing dialogue and for rebuilding trust. It considers security in a broad and comprehensive way. We cover a wide range of security related concerns, including arms control, security related actions, human rights, democratization, economic and environmental activities. And all participating states take part equally” Greminger said.

Immediately after the speech Thomas Greminger answered the numerous questions of the participants.

Referring to the situation around Nagorno-Karabakh, OSCE Secretary General stated that he fully supports the efforts of the OSCE Minsk Group aimed at peaceful resolution of the conflict.

In the end of the meeting, the Vice-Rector of ADA University Fariz Ismailzade asked the relevant question to the OSCE Secretary General.

“If you go to the regions of Azerbaijan and ask an ordinary citizen about his/her opinion on the OSCE, the answer will be very disappointing, because last almost 25 years there is no any result in the activity of the OSCE Minsk Group aimed at the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict resolution. What will be you answer to that citizen to rebuild his or her trust?” Fariz Ismailzade asked.

Thomas Greminger answered that this is a natural tendency - if there is no progress in conflict resolution to blame the mediators.

“I would try to explain this tendency to that person. If there is no any result in conflict resolution, then it often happens due to the lack of political commitment. But most probably, if I had such a meeting, I would try to focus his/her attention on other responsibilities of the OSCE such as preventing extremism and radicalization, strengthening institutions, human rights, rule of law, and economy. We are not only conflict managers, but we are also doing quite a lot valuable and important things,” OSCE Secretary General concluded.

This is Thomas Greminger's first visit to Azerbaijan after being appointed as the OSCE Secretary General in July 2018. He was elected as a result of so-called procedure of silence - after July 12 the OSCE Permanent Council agreed on a single candidature, nominated Greminger for the vacant post and asked the foreign ministers of the OSCE countries to approve the candidate during a five-day procedure.



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