Viche 2007 13

13, 2007

Moral Obligations Are the Most Important Ones

Vitaliy Shybko, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine of V convocation and Deputy Head of the Organizing Committee for preparation and holding of the 16th OSCE PA Session gave his comments to Viche on some issues dealing with session holding and the debates itself:

Is it an honor for Kyiv to host the OSCE PA Session. Joint declaration which will be adopted based on the results of the session will be named after the place of its holding. Thus this year summer declaration will be named Kyiv Declaration. Issues which are discussed during the forum will be engraved in the history of this union of countries. Furthermore politicians will underline that these or those important resolutions have been adopted exactly in Kyiv.

Which issues of the session seem the most important ones to you?

I would point out two of them. The first one is the issue on energy saving and supply. The second one, the issue on resolutions' implementation, will be discussed for the first time at this session. It's common knowledge that usually sessions are of recommendatory character and mostly of moral nature. That is all member states that joined the OSCE of their own accord agree that first we need to approve a resolution at the Committees and then to adopt the joint declaration and to start its implementation. It is exactly the stage at which certain problems may arise: the implementation stage. Therefore parliamentarians decided to move from moral character to more effective steps aimed at implementation of the resolutions adopted during a session by each country or by their Parliaments.

How will be the Europe energy security issue discussed?

The OSCE member states have different energy capacities. Some countries posses it some are just consuming it when others are both consuming and transit countries. All countries as a rule are following certain common rules: deals, agreements (e.g. Kyoto Protocol regulating harmful gas emissions) etc. The need to keep sticking to these norms and to not harm the environment will be on the agenda in Kyiv. For today there are unfortunately countries which neglect these norms.

This question was almost the most important one at the recent G8 Summit in Germany...

Yes it was. The countries which belong to the G8 are also the OSCE members. They also have their representatives in the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly. Therefore more precise scale of usage of let's say non-traditional energy suppliers may be discussed during Kyiv session or it may go about a certain energy saving capacity. Nowadays different figured of the planned presumable energy savings are given: from 10 to 20 percent. Thus the OSCE will analyze the obligations taken by member states and fixed in form of deals or agreements. Thereby the Organization will emphasize once more that the states must stick to the before defined and publicly declared platform.

Will the monopolistic role of Russia in the energy supply field be discussed?

I don't think that the issue will be formulated this way at the session. I don't think that there will be any pressure or let's say pressing on the issue. It's not characteristic of the Organization. I think that such harsh style of question formulation may sound at some other institutions. Here as I have already said everything will sound with moral factor influence: how these or those OSCE states meet their obligations.

Isn't it insufficient to take only moral obligations?

Moral obligations are the most important ones. Imagine the country which is a member of the OSCE does not meet the undertaken obligations several times in a row. Then this country will be treated correspondingly by other countries. It will be considered to be an unreliable partner. It means that if any country, let's say Russia, neglects something the countries which are cooperating with it may seriously search for alternative transit ways for fuel delivery or look for alternative types of energy. This is exactly what some countries have done as a result of certain well-known situations connected with the Russian Federation. In a word if you do not fulfill your obligations no one will deal with you and you won't benefit from such relations.

Will the issue of the USA plans to deploy its PRO system elements in Europe be discussed at the session?

I don't think so. Anyhow there is no such issue on the announced agenda. Maybe somebody will initiate a separate resolution on the issue. Indeed besides the initiatives on resolutions which are brought in by three Committees of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly a separate deputy may also initiate a resolution on any issue. In this case he needs to collect 20 signs of parliamentarians from no less then four countries. Then such resolution comes in force and is added to the agenda.

To tell you the truth I was impressed by Russia's proposal to the USA to use the Gabalinskaya Radio Detection and Ranging equipment in Azerbaijan. Putin claimed he discussed it with the President Alkham Aliev. I think the USA hasn't even thought of this. This is an interesting pivoting movement. I think it will be more beneficial for Ukraine and for its peace to avoid at least arguments over this issue.

What the deputies may be saying about Ukraine, its political crisis, semi-legitimate Parliament, etc.?

I underline that Ukrainian Parliament is the hosting side. It testifies ones more (despite everything) that the session will take place. That means the Parliament is legitimate. And our internal political situation will be for sure discussed within the meeting. It should not obligatory be discussed during official part of the discussion. There will be arranged many meetings with the Leaders of our State. Besides the issues which have been already included in the agenda of the session the problems of Ukraine will be discussed during such meetings. I think it is interesting for the representatives of member states what is happening in Ukraine. After all it will influence the relations between the OSCE member states and Ukraine, which is also a member of the Organization.