Prioritetet e Kryesisë shqiptare 2020 të OSBE-së

OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Albania’s Prime Minister and Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Edi Rama, addresses the OSCE Permanent Council, with Acting Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Gent Cakaj (r), and Ambassador Igli Hasani, Chair of the Permanent Council
Under the motto ‘Implementing our commitments together’, Albania’s OSCE Chairmanship 2020 will work towards making a difference on the ground, leveraging the Organization’s acquis, and enhancing dialogue, said OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Albania’s Prime Minister and Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Edi Rama, in his address to the Permanent Council in Vienna today.
Recalling the Helsinki Final Act of 1975, a landmark politically binding document signed by States of the then Conference for Security and Co-operation in Europe (the forerunner of the OSCE), Rama said that his country had directly benefitted from this agreement’s principles on peace and security.
“As I sit today in this chair, I cannot but pay tribute to all those who fought, suffered, died for Albania’s freedom and thank all those who worked hard and contributed in various ways through the long tortuous path of our democratic transition from a brutal dictatorship to a functioning democracy - including also all those who accompanied us in that path. Among them, OSCE was one of the key presences,” he said. “I feel today all the huge responsibility as well as the great opportunity of having to give something back to our Organization after the OSCE has given so much to Albania for so many years.”
The Chairmanship’s motto, ‘Implementing our commitments together’, embodies three main elements, he said.
“First, the importance of honoring our common obligations. We cannot credibly undertake new commitments if we fail to adhere to existing ones. Second, to focus on the valuable instruments that we at the OSCE possess. Third, that our responsibility is shared among the 57 participating States, since for the Chairmanship to advance a common agenda, a shared political vision is of essence.”
The Chairmanship’s first priority is ‘making a difference on the ground’, said Rama.
“The OSCE has proven time and again that it can deploy to conflict and post-conflict settings, often where and when no one else can. As the crisis in and around Ukraine remains the most pressing security challenge in Europe, the unique contribution of the Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) to reducing tensions and fostering peace, stability and security is essential. While there have been some encouraging signals with regard to the crisis that we applaud, the road to long-standing peace remains long. The Albanian Chairmanship will do its part to encourage respect for the OSCE principles and commitments and the full implementation of the Minsk Agreements, supporting the efforts of the Trilateral Contact Group and the process of the Normandy Format. The SMM and Ukraine will also be the destination of my first visit, in the coming weeks, as OSCE Chairperson-in-Office.”
Conflict resolution efforts such as those of the Minsk Group Co-Chairs on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the Geneva International Discussions and related mechanisms, and the Transdniestrian Settlement Process will also be high on the Chairmanship’s agenda, added Rama.
He said that Albania intends to leverage its first-hand experience of hosting an OSCE field operation to explore how to maximize their potential. The Chair will also promote the role of women in peace and security, taking note of this year’s 20th anniversary of the UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security.
Under the Chair’s second priority, ‘leveraging our acquis’, the Chairmanship would focus on enhancing security against contemporary threats and challenges such as small arms and light weapons, organized crime, human trafficking, violent extremism, cybersecurity, and on promoting the freedom of expression and of the media, and combating violence against women.
“Advancing good governance is another challenge, and I look forward to focusing on this during a high-level conference on anti-corruption in Tirana,” he said.
On the third priority, ‘dialogue’, Rama pointed to “an undeniable surge in hate crimes and hate speech throughout the OSCE region.”
He said promoting tolerance and non-discrimination will be a major focus of the Chairmanship and at the forthcoming conference on combating anti-Semitism in Tirana, Albania would share its experience of religious harmony.
“We will endeavour to use all OSCE instruments to advance a mutual understanding on today’s security challenges, starting from the Structured Dialogue, and reducing risks through our confidence- and security-building measures,” said Rama. “There will be dialogue both on policy issues, for example on environmental protection, as well as political, with fellow organizations such as the UN, the European Union, and with the civil society and the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly. Finally, since many of our challenges and opportunities stem from beyond the OSCE region, we must reinforce our platform for dialogue with the Asian and Mediterranean Partners for Co-operation.”
Among the Chair’s imminent areas of work will be securing the participating States’ adoption of the OSCE Unified Budget, and to negotiate the leadership of OSCE Executive Structures beyond 2020, said Rama. Regarding the budget negotiations, he told the Permanent Council: “We all have an equal stake in the functioning of the OSCE. It is our collective duty towards the OSCE staff, who serve over a billion people.”
Earlier in his address, Rama thanked the outgoing OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Slovakia’s Foreign Minister Miroslav Lajčák and his team for their work last year, adding that he looked forward to working with colleagues from Slovakia and Sweden, the 2021 OSCE Chair, in the OSCE Troika “to co-ordinate our collective response at addressing our common challenges.”
Concluding, he said: “The subtle aim of multilateralism is to keep dialogue open among a community of states, even when all odds are against. I am looking forward to hearing your voices and starting a dialogue, which will last this entire year.”

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