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Meetings Calendar 2006
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OSCE


Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe

www.osce.org

 

Employees: 380
In Vienna since: 1994
Member states: 55

The 55 member states of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which is the successor organisation of the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE) founded in 1975, make it the largest regional organisation for security in the world. The OSCE pursues a comprehensive and cooperative security approach that includes the political-military, economic-environmental and human dimensions. All countries that participate in OSCE activities have equal rights and are not bound by a treaty, which makes resolutions made under the principle of consensus politically, but not legally, binding.

With institutionalisation of the OSCE, the Secretariat of the organisation was set up in Vienna in 1994 and its areas of responsibility have grown steadily since then. The Special Representative for Trafficking in Human Beings is also part of the Secretariat. The office of an OSCE Representative for Media Freedom was established in 1997.

Weekly meetings are also held in Vienna of the Permanent Council of the OSCE, the Forum for Security Cooperation and, in close organisational and technical collaboration with the OSCE institutions, the permanent bodies according to the Treaty on Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) and the Open Skies Treaty.

The OSCE has also become an operative organisation in the past decade, maintaining 18 missions in Central Asia, the South Caucasus, Eastern Europe and the Balkans. The Secretariat in Vienna also oversees the data and logistical support of the field missions with their approximately 3 000 employees.

The OSCE institutions based outside Vienna are also of great importance, specifically the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) based in Warsaw and the High Commissioner for National Minorities in The Hague.

 

Tasks of the OSCE:

  • Early warning, conflict prevention, crisis management and post-conflict rehabilitation
  • Arms control
  • Preventive diplomacy
  • Confidence and security-building measures
  • Protection of human rights
  • Democratisation and monitoring elections
  • Economic and environmental concerns
  • Strategic police work
  • Anti-terrorism activities
  • Fighting trafficking in human beings

 

Date: 04.01.2006