VIENNA, June 21, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --
Ukraine will use its chairmanship of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe to strengthen confidence and trust between participating states, signalling that a change of "mindset" is needed.
With Ukraine assuming the 2013 OSCE chairmanship from Ireland, Foreign Minister Kostyantyn Gryshchenko told the OSCE Permanent Council in Vienna that restoring trust between member states does not mean radically altering the organisation.
"It is not the fundamentals of the OSCE that need to change. The change should occur in the mindsets - from confrontational thinking to cooperative approach," he said.
Given its geographical location between Russia and the West, Gryshchenko said he believes his country is well placed to offer the OSCE a fresh perspective, allowing it to help bring nations together to reinforce their dialogue.
"We stand resolute to contribute to the establishment of the OSCE Security Community, free of dividing lines, conflicts, spheres of influence and zones with different levels of security," he said.
"This is particularly important for the security of those OSCE participating States that do not belong to any politico-military alliances."
Gryshchenko said he is ready to reinvigorate the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) negotiations, which will further reduce the world's active military forces and support OSCE efforts in the areas of emerging transnational threats, improving border security, counter terrorism, combating drug trafficking and the training of law enforcement officials.
He reminded the Permanent Council - the OSCE's decision-making body - that Ukraine is a young nation committed to democracy and human rights, key values at the heart of the OSCE's third dimension, which deals with combating human trafficking, free and fair elections, gender equality and media freedom.
"Security of a human being remains at the heart of the comprehensive security approach of the OSCE," Gryshchenko said.
"Promotion of implementation of the existing commitments in the human dimension will be at the top of the Ukrainian Chairmanship's agenda."
From its Euro-focused beginnings in the 1990s, the OSCE has expanded to include 56 participating states from the Northern hemisphere and partners for cooperation from around the world. Its mandate is to promote democracy and open government as well as to prevent conflict and negotiate peace.
Nations hold the revolving chair for a year, with Gryshchenko becoming the Chairperson-in-Office of the OSCE, taking over from Ireland's Eamon Gilmore.
SOURCE Ukraine Foreign Affairs