Slovakia will vie for OSCE presidency in 2019

Slovakia will apply for the presidency of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe for the year 2019. The cabinet acknowledged a document in preparation for the presidency on November 23.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier is currently  the head of the rotating OSCE chairmanship. German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier is currently the head of the rotating OSCE chairmanship. (Source: AP/TASR)

If the country succeeds, the presidency would enable it to influence the operation of the organisation more distinctively from the point of view of crucial issues and motifs – also concerning its own foreign policy, the TASR newswire wrote. A natural priority for Slovakia’s presidency would be a greater focus on regions like eastern Europe, the western Balkans, or thematic spheres such as energy security and the reform of the security sector which are firmly rooted in the OSCE. Their further development would be a follow-up to Slovak activities in the organisation so far, the Slovak Foreign Ministry informed TASR.

To achieve the presidency, it is necessary to file the bid for candidacy and get the support of all the OSCE member states; this will then transform into a decision of the OSCE ministerial council, achieved by consensus. The council will meet in December 2016, at a session in Hamburg.

This year, the presiding country of the OSCE is Germany, with Austria following in 2017 and Italy in 2018. The foreign minister of the presiding country is the incumbent chair of the OSCE, TASR wrote.

Slovakia was part of the OSCE presidency in 1992, within the then Czechoslovakia. In the second half of that year, then federal foreign minister Jozef Moravčík was the sitting chairman of the OSCE – which is the biggest regional security organisation, based on Chapter VIII of the UN Charter.

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