New OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Prime Minister of Albania, Edi Rama

VIENNA —  Conflict resolution efforts such as those of the Minsk Group Co-Chairs on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the Geneva International Discussions and related mechanisms, and the Transdniestrian Settlement Process will also be high on the Chairmanship’s agenda, said OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Albania’s Prime Minister and Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Edi Rama, in his address to the Permanent Council in Vienna on January 9.

He said under the motto ‘Implementing our commitments together’, Albania’s OSCE Chairmanship 2020 will work towards making a difference on the ground, leveraging the Organization’s acquis, and enhancing dialogue.

The Chairmanship’s first priority is ‘making a difference on the ground’, said Rama. Under the Chair’s second priority, ‘leveraging our acquis’, the Chairmanship would focus on enhancing security against contemporary threats and challenges such as small arms and light weapons, organized crime, human trafficking, violent extremism, cybersecurity, and on promoting the freedom of expression and of the media, and combating violence against women.

“Advancing good governance is another challenge, and I look forward to focusing on this during a high-level conference on anti-corruption in Tirana,” he said.

On the third priority, ‘dialogue’, Rama pointed to “an undeniable surge in hate crimes and hate speech throughout the OSCE region.”

He said promoting tolerance and non-discrimination will be a major focus of the Chairmanship and at the forthcoming conference on combating anti-Semitism in Tirana, Albania would share its experience of religious harmony.

“We will endeavor to use all OSCE instruments to advance a mutual understanding on today’s security challenges, starting from the Structured Dialogue, and reducing risks through our confidence- and security-building measures,” said Rama. “There will be dialogue both on policy issues, for example on environmental protection, as well as political, with fellow organizations such as the UN, the European Union, and with the civil society and the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly. Finally, since many of our challenges and opportunities stem from beyond the OSCE region, we must reinforce our platform for dialogue with the Asian and Mediterranean Partners for Co-operation.”

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