Comment by the Information and Press Department in connection with Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s participation in the OSCE Ministerial Council
On December 7−8, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov plans to take part in the 24th meeting of the OSCE Ministerial Council that will be held in Vienna.
We hope for open and mutually respectful dialogue at a high political level on the state of affairs in European security, challenges facing the OSCE member states and prospects of cooperation between them. We hope the discussion will help restore trust and defuse military-political tension in the Euro-Atlantic region, that it will facilitate the harmonisation of approaches in the struggle against transnational threats and give impetus to the settlement of conflicts, primarily in eastern Ukraine, as well as bring closer the positions of states on the urgent issues of economic and humanitarian cooperation.
At the ministerial meeting in Vienna, we plan to prioritise the issues of countering terrorism, drug trafficking and cyber threats, linking integration processes and protecting traditional values and to draw the attention of the participants to the unsatisfactory military-political situation that has been caused by NATO’s policy of consolidating its “eastern flank”. We will also focus on violations of language and education rights, freedom of the media and the growth of xenophobia and neo-Nazism in Ukraine, the United States and the EU, above all in the Baltic countries. In cooperation with Hungary we are preparing an event on protecting the rights of Christians on the meeting’s sidelines. We will reaffirm the importance of continuing the implementation of the reform of the OSCE, including the drafting of its Charter and improving the performance of its institutions and missions.
Based on these priorities Russia has suggested three drafts of OSCE decisions – on countering terrorist ideology and propaganda in support of UN Security Council Resolution 2354, reform of the OSCE human dimension, and linking integration processes (Russia drafted the latter initiative in cooperation with its EAEU partners). In all, there are about 30 drafts that have been submitted for discussion at the Vienna meeting.
Mr Lavrov also plans to hold bilateral sessions with ministers of OSCE partners and heads of international organisations on the sidelines of the Vienna meeting.