IN RESPONSE TO AMBASSADOR LENARCIC, DIRECTOR OF ODIHR

Tacan İLDEM 27.10.2011
PERMANENT MISSION OF TURKEY TO THE OSCE

STATEMENT BY AMBASSADOR TACAN ILDEM PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF TURKEY (885th Meeting of the Permanent Council, 27 October 2011)

Thank you Mr. Chairperson,

I join the previous speakers in warmly welcoming the Director of ODIHR, Ambassador Lenarcic, to the Permanent Council and thank him for the very useful and lucid overview of discussions at the Human Dimension Implementation Meeting (HDIM).

I would like to reiterate our appreciation to ODIHR staff for the successful organization of the implementation meeting as well as to Polish authorities for their customary warm hospitality and to Lithuanian Chairmanship for its stewardship.

It was gratifying to enjoy the active participation of the representatives of civil society as well as the participating States in exchanging views during the review of implementation of our human dimension commitments. The participating States were able to identify some worrying trends in implementation, on the one hand, elaborate on effective response strategies and best practices on the other. The side events continued to add value to the review exercise by providing meaningful interaction among the participants.

As it was underscored earlier by my Delegation, the requirement for improving the conduct of HDIM yet again preserved its place among the immediate conclusions also this year. We believe that a number of organizational adjustments are necessary in order to render HDIM more attractive for the NGO’s and to enhance the quality of the discussions. The allocation of minimum time slots during the sessions that have the highest number of participants can be cited among the set of contradictions which, in our view, require our attention. We hope that the initiatives that are planned to be undertaken in the near future will yield positive results.

We welcome the increasing number of NGO representatives. We are glad to be informed that figures and statistics resulted in a satisfactory geographical spread. The participating States should spell out more loudly a word of encouragement for an OSCE wide participation of NGOs, bearing in mind that self-criticism is essential for the credibility of criticism addressed to other participating States.

The two-week debate on wide spectrum of areas once again reflected the long distance that the participating States have to cover with a view to implementing their commitments. In order to attain a more desirable level and effectiveness in this respect, we need to maintain candid discussion among ourselves and the valuable cooperation with the OSCE structures, particularly the ODIHR.

On the other hand, HDIM also underscored the fact that the debates of 17 sessions do not fully coincide with the order of business which we are invited to follow in Vienna. Turkey continues to be concerned that the voice and pleas of the civil society are far from being equally heard and seriously taken into consideration by the governments and the OSCE. We consider this as a prerequisite for a result-oriented functioning of the human dimension.

Turkey readily subscribes to the expressed sentiments of highlighting the importance of follow-up of recommendations. We are willing to take part in this endeavor provided that hierarchical compartmentalization of human dimension would be brought to an end. The continuous calls for revitalizing the political will of the participating States equally entail to break the overwhelming silence in Vienna on certain aspects of human dimension, such as xenophobia, discrimination, racism and intolerance, despite the fact that the tragic incidents in the recent past should serve as an eye-opener for the alarming nature of the problem in a growing number of participating States.

At a time when high expectations to establish new commitments in the human dimension are incarnated in a number of Ministerial draft decisions accompanied with strong political support and ownership, we shall seek to witness equally innovative and steadfast approach for the drafts which are about to be presented for consideration.

In concluding, let me reassure Ambassador Lenarcic of the determination of my country to continue our close cooperation with his Office.

Thank you.