Sunday, April 24, 2022

Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE)

The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) is the world's largest regional security-oriented intergovernmental organisation.  It even has observer status as the United Nations.  It began in 1973 as a forum between the west and the east during the Cold War.  The OSCE focuses on arms control, promotion of human rights, freedom of the press, and free and fair elections.  

Its headquarters are in Vienna and today the OSCE consists of 57 participating countries plus 11 observer/partner countries.  The six official languages are English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, and Russian. 

It's basically every country in Europe plus the USA and Canada.  The 11 partner countries are Afghanistan, Australia, Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Morocco, South Korea, Thailand, and Tunisia. 

Each year a different country assumes the chairmanship for a calendar year and that country's minister of foreign affairs is the Chairperson-in-Office.  Czechoslovakia held the chairmanship in 1992.  An independent Czechland hasn't held the chairmanship yet but Slovakia held it in 2019.  

The chairmanship is with Poland this year.  North Macedonia has it next year followed by Estonia in 2024 and Finland in 2025.

Here's a short video I found out on YouTube about the OSCE.

©The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe

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