20th meeting of OSCE Ministerial Council starts in Kiev

5 December 2013 12:30
KYIV (QHA) - The 20th Ministerial Council of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) has opened in Kyiv on December 5 with more than 30 foreign ministers of the OSCE member states, reports Ukrinform. The ministers will discuss the agenda of the OSCE's activities, given the priorities that had been identified by Ukraine during its chairmanship of the Organization this year. Ukraine's Foreign Minister, OSCE Chairperson-in-Office Leonid Kozhara in the run-up to the event made a statement in which he noted that “this meeting of the Ministerial Council takes place against the background of peaceful public demonstrations in Kyiv which highlight observance by Ukraine of human rights and fundamental freedoms, including freedom of expression, freedom of assembly and association.” He stressed the need of peaceful dialogue between the government and the opposition, without resorting to violence or inflammatory rhetoric and without external interference. “Peaceful political dialogue and actions fully compliant with the national legislation is the only practical way forward in the interests of a stable and prosperous Ukraine,” Kozhara emphasized. A reminder that Ukraine has been a party to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) since January 30, 1992. Today, the OSCE is the largest regional organization which brings together 56 countries in Europe, Central Asia and North America in order to promote political dialogue and cooperation in the field of security in all its dimensions - politico-military, economic and environmental, and humanitarian. The 20th Meeting of the OSCE Ministerial Council will be held in Kyiv on 5 and 6 December 2013. The venue is the International Exhibition Centre (IEC).