IN RESPONSE TO THE REPORT BY OSCE SECRETARY GENERAL PURSUANT TO MINISTERIAL COUNCIL DECISION 3/11

Tacan İLDEM 19.07.2012
STATEMENT BY AMBASSADOR TACAN İLDEM, PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF TURKEY
IN RESPONSE TO THE REPORT BY OSCE SECRETARY GENERAL PURSUANT TO MINISTERIAL COUNCIL DECISION 3/11
921th PERMANENT COUNCIL
19 July 2012

Mr. Chairperson,

I would like to join others in expressing our thanks to the Secretary General for the presentation of his informative report.

The implementation phase of the Ministerial Council decision 3/11 is undoubtedly as important as its adoption. Within this context, we appreciate the consultation process initiated by the Secretary General and Irish Chairmanship with the participating States through the informal open ended working group meetings during the preparations of the report.

The report is currently being studied in my capital. Without prejudice to the instructions that we will receive, I would like to share our preliminary assessments and pose some questions for clarification derived from the first reading of the report.

The Secretariat and executive structures are expected to implement the decision in a way that conforms to the respective mandates as well as the rules and procedures of our Organization. We welcome the remarks of the Secretary General in that respect and we do not have any doubt that these parameters will be strictly adhered to during the implementation phase. Taking into consideration the intergovernmental nature of the OSCE, it is also vital to continue to furnish participating States with up to date information and to seek their guidance on the ongoing work including in the preparation of the internal documents.

We welcome the determination of the Secretary General, in consultation with the Chairmanship and by taking into account relevant executive structures mandates, to bring to the attention of the Permanent Council any situation of emerging tensions and conflicts in the OSCE area and propose possible response options. We fully share the view that it should be done in a way that is appropriate to each situation and in consultation with the participating States involved.

The decision making bodies, particularly the Permanent Council play a crucial role in our Organization’s efforts in conflict prevention and resolution. The decisions reached in these bodies provide legitimacy and credibility to the OSCE’s actions. Therefore any attempt to circumvent the decision making bodies will be detrimental to the effectiveness of the OSCE’s efforts in the conflict cycle.

Cognizant of the role of mediation as an instrument in conflict prevention and resolution, Turkey is at the forefront of the international initiatives to promote mediation. The joint initiative that we have undertaken with Finland at the UN yielded positive results in a short period of time since its inception. In this vein, we may positively consider the proposal of the Secretary General to include a seconded position in Conflict Prevention Center’s Operation Service dedicated to mediation and mediation support in the upcoming 2013 budget proposal. On the other hand, the elements in the “Concept on Strengthening Mediation-Support within the OSCE” which was referred to in the report needs to be further discussed among participating States. Therefore we would like to learn which proposals in the document will form the basis for the operational work of the Secretariat.

In the report, the reference to post conflict rehabilitation and conflict resolution are being taken up under the same heading. Although linked with each other in various aspects, it would have been better to address these two phases of the conflict cycle in separate sections. On the other hand, we concur with the view that the efforts in post conflict rehabilitation and conflict resolution needs to focus first and foremost on what can be done with the mandates, tools and resources at hand before seeking to expand our toolbox.

We welcome the proposal of an OSCE-wide Action Plan related to the implementation of UNSCR 1325 as well as the development of coordination and cooperation of the OSCE and its executive structures with other international and regional organizations in accordance with the decision. On the other hand, there is a need to continue the consultations among participating States with the aim of creating a common ground for the various proposals in the report such as establishing a Conflict Prevention and Crises Management Fund, pursuing a phased approach in terms of human resources in early action, creating ad hoc mediation teams and making better use of OSCE PA in responding to emerging and conflict situations.

As to the way forward, we may consider favorably the continuation of the open ended working group meetings for the second half of the year since these meetings provide a useful opportunity for participating States to get acquainted with the outcomes of the ongoing work in the implementation of the decision and to exchange views on them.

Last but not least, I would like to take this opportunity to stress once again that strengthening the means and capabilities of the OSCE in early warning, early action, dialogue facilitation and mediation support and post-conflict rehabilitation will not compensate the political deadlock in the conflicts. It is our hope and expectation that more emphasis be given to the “political solution” aspect of conflicts in our future work.

Thank you.