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12 Jul 2017

Belarus’ MFA comments on media reports regarding appointment of OSCE leadership

MINSK, 12 July (BelTA) – The Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has commented on media reports regarding the process of appointing OSCE leadership and the candidacy of Belarusian diplomat Alena Kupchyna for the post of OSCE secretary general, BelTA has learned.

“First of all, we would like to note that no official decision has been made yet, and it is inappropriate to comment on such things ahead of time. Second, we want to point out the very fact that it is for the first time that a representative of a country ‘east of Vienna’ has been suggested as a candidate for the position of the OSCE secretary general,” the press service noted.

The ministry emphasized that when proposing its candidate, Belarus was primarily guided by the desire to make additional contribution to the development of the environment of mutual trust and dialogue and to the effort to strengthen the OSCE. “We continue to believe that the Belarusian candidate Alena Kupchyna, Belarus’ Ambassador to Austria, former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belarus, has all the necessary professional qualifications for effective management of the OSCE Secretariat at a time that is challenging for the organization and the region as a whole. By the way, this has been recognized by many of our partners from different parts of the OSCE,” the ministry added.

As for selecting candidates for this post and also for the positions of the heads of three OSCE bodies (Director of the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, Representative on Freedom of the Media, and High Commissioner on National Minorities), the ministry said that the process was quite difficult and was facing the threat of a dead end with tough consequences for the organization that would suddenly have no one at its head, the ministry explained.

“We think that the organization has missed the opportunity to strengthen a sense of common ownership and make additional contribution to the removal of dividing lines in our region, yet we still believe in OSCE’s special importance and role. We are interested in maintaining the viability of the organization and recognize the need for continuous full-scale functioning of its executive bodies, so we will take a responsible and constructive approach to the appointment to these important offices. Belarus will continue working towards achieving positive results and strengthening the organization, removing dividing lines, and developing a true security community in the interests of all the member states,” the ministry added.

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