Viche 2007 13

13, 2007

The Most Important Thing Is That of the Organization

OSCE PA Secretary General
Spencer Oliver answered the questions of the Ukrainian
parliamentary magazine Viche

Q: Is there a certain symbolism in the fact that the OSCE PA's Annual Session takes place in Kyiv?
A: Yes, because the fact that we meet in Kyiv is a sign of the importance that the Parliamentary Assembly of the OSCE puts on the countries in the eastern part of the OSCE area. What happens in countries like Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, the three countries in South Caucasus and the five countries in Central Asia, are important for the OSCE and its Parliamentary Assembly. Our job must now focus on these countries, which are equal members of the OSCE PA. We want to hear their voices in our discussions. As a regional security organization with members from Vancouver in Canada to Vladivostok in Russia, the OSCE PA is well-suited for this task.

Q: Which of the main questions of the Annual Session would you mark out and why?
A: The main issues will be similar to the main tasks of the OSCE PA, namely regional security, conflict resolution, democracy building and human rights. I also think that energy security will be an important issue to be discussed. But there are also issues such as the banning of cluster-bombs, combating anti-semitism and racism, the illicit transport of small arms and light weapons, environmental security strategy that will be important issues in our discussions.

Q: Will the Session discuss the problem of power safety of countries in Europe?
A: If you by power safety mean energy security, yes, that will be discussed and it should be discussed since this is an important matter for the countries of in the eastern part of the OSCE area but also for Europe and North America. So I expect a lively debate about this issue.

Q: Do you believe that the members of the OSCE PA are interested in the home policy situation in Ukraine?
A: If you by that you are asking if I think our members are interested in the domestic political situation of Ukraine, I would say yes, of course. These members, as politicians, are very interested in all political matters. Ukraine is a country that has been undergoing big changes in the last few years. It's an important country and we are very happy to come to Kyiv and we are grateful to the Ukrainian parliament to be the host of our 16th Annual Session.

Q: What problematic question in your opinion will be represented in the Final Declaration of the Session?
A: Well, that is impossible to say at this moment, before we have even gathered in Kyiv. But the Session promises to be lively. We'll have good attendance and, I am sure, a good and lively debate. And we hope, by way of our Annual Session, to contribute to the general debate within the OSCE about the political development in the OSCE area. It's important that the parliamentarians of the organization are heard.