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CM/Inf(2006)11 31 January 2006
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15th high-level “3+3” meeting between the Council of Europe and the OSCE (Brussels, 30 January 2006)

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1. The 15th High-level meeting between the Council of Europe and the OSCE was held on 30 January 2006 in Brussels, in a “3+3” format, at the invitation of the Committee of Ministers’ Romanian Chairmanship. The Council of Europe was represented by the Chairman of the Committee of Ministers, Mihai-Razvan Ungureanu, by the Secretary General, Terry Davis, and by the President of the Parliamentary Assembly, René van der Linden.

2. The joint declaration made public at the close of the meeting, as well as the list of participants, appear in Appendices 1 and 2.

Appendix 1


Joint Declaration
15th High-level "3+3" meeting

Brussels, 30 January 2006: The Chairman of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, Romanian Foreign Minister, Mihai-Razvan Ungureanu, OSCE Chairman-in-Office, Belgian Foreign Minister, Karel De Gucht and the Secretaries General of the two Organisations, Terry Davis and Marc Perrin de Brichambaut, as well as the President of the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly, René van der Linden, and the Secretary General of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, Spencer Oliver (representing President Hastings), met in Brussels on 30 January for the 15th Council of Europe–OSCE High-level meeting.

The partner organisations stressed the importance of promoting security, peace and stability based on human rights, democracy and the rule of law throughout Europe without any dividing lines.

They underscored the need for the OSCE and the Council of Europe, to ensure complementarity, taking into account their respective fields of excellence.

Co-operation between the two organisations on a number of regional and thematic issues was discussed highlighting the need to build on good practice and further strengthen synergies between the OSCE and the Council of Europe, including in the field.

Welcoming the Action Plan of the Third Council of Europe Summit (Warsaw, 16-17 May 2005) and the Declaration on Cooperation between the Council of Europe and the OSCE, participants commended the work of the OSCE-Council of Europe Coordination Group, which had initially focused on the fight against terrorism, the protection of national minorities, the fight against intolerance and discrimination, and the fight against trafficking in human beings. They called on the Group to intensify its work and identify further priority areas.

The need to resolve conflict situations through political dialogue was stressed. This was essential to achieve democratic stability and sustainable development in the regions, in which both organisations operated.

The meeting discussed the situation in Kosovo/Serbia and Montenegro. Participants expressed their sadness at the death of Ibrahim Rugova, who had been deeply committed to non-violence. They called on Kosovo’s people and their political leaders to work together, saying his death should not be allowed to jeopardise the efforts to find a just and peaceful solution for the future status of Kosovo. Commending the decision to begin status talks, they stressed the importance of renewed focus on Standards Implementation. Decentralization and the protection of community/minority rights were identified as key issues for both organizations.

Participants also welcomed the start of the dialogue among international organizations regarding their engagement in post-status Kosovo. They gave their full support to the efforts of the Special Envoy, Martti Ahtisaari, and pledged to continue assisting in the democratic institution building of Kosovo, in close co-operation with all the international and local partners on the ground.

On Montenegro, participants said they expected the authorities to implement the recommendations of the Venice Commission and those of the OSCE/ODIHR with regard to the organisation and the conduct of a referendum in accordance with European standards. They encouraged the authorities and the pro-union opposition parties to agree, through dialogue, on the referendum terms. Principles, accepted by all major political groupings in Montenegro with the support of the International Community, were crucial to ensure future political stability. Participants stressed that the two Organizations would continue to support the work of Ambassador Miroslav Lajčák, Personal Representative of the EU High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy, Javier Solana, to facilitate negotiations among political forces in Montenegro on the arrangements for the proposed referendum.

When discussing the Transdniestrian conflict, participants called for a continuation of a constructive political dialogue with a view to finding a permanent negotiated settlement based on respect for Moldova’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. They expressed the hope that current tensions between the sides could be lessened in the new negotiation format including the EU and US as observers. They also called on all parties concerned to implement fully the judgments of the European Court of Human Rights, in particular in the case of Ilascu and others.

On the South Caucasus, the participants reiterated their support for the territorial integrity of the States of the region. With regard to the Georgian-Ossetian and Georgian-Abkhaz conflicts the representatives of the organizations, said they would continue to contribute to the creation of conditions conducive to progress towards a lasting and peaceful settlement. On the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the two organisations called for a peaceful settlement and reiterated the importance of the ongoing activities in the framework of the OSCE Minsk Process towards a lasting and comprehensive political solution. They agreed to continue to interact closely on initiatives concerning the settlement of the dispute, which both Armenia and Azerbaijan had committed themselves to resolve peacefully when they had joined the Council of Europe. They underlined that to achieve a peaceful settlement it was important to consolidate democratic reform.

On Ukraine the meeting underlined the crucial importance of the forthcoming parliamentary elections for the continuation and consolidation of the democratic reform process for which both organisations pledged renewed support. They voiced satisfaction at the way the parliamentary election process was being conducted and welcomed Ukraine’s clear commitment to democratic progress and reform.

On Belarus participants welcomed the invitation for the OSCE to observe the up-coming March 19 presidential elections. They called on the Belarusian authorities to abide by their international commitments to allow the organisation and conduct of fair, free and democratic elections permitting all candidates to campaign without hindrance or obstruction. They also expressed concern about restrictions on the media and civil society, in particular, through recently adopted legislation. In this context, they referred to the discussions held on 26 January in the Council of Europe, and in particular to the texts adopted by the Parliamentary Assembly on that occasion, as well as to recent statements made by the Chairman of the Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers and by the Chairman in office of the OSCE.

Appendix 2

15th High-level "3+3" meeting
Brussels, 30 January 2006

List of participants

Council of Europe

Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers

Mr Mihai-Razvan Ungureanu Chairman of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Romania

Ambassador Gheorghe Magheru Permanent Representative of Romania to the Council of Europe

Ambassador Liviu Bota Permanent Representative of Romania to the OSCE

Ambassador Ion Junga Ambassador of Romania to Belgium

Ms Christina Gaginski Head of Division of relations with the Council of Europe and the OSCE

Ms Elisabeta David Counselor

*
* *

Mr Denis Huber Principal Administrator, Secretariat of the Committee of Ministers

Secretariat General

Mr Terry Davis Secretary General

Mr Jack Hanning Director, Directorate of external and multilateral relations

Mr Ivan Koedjikov Deputy Director of the Private Office of the Secretary General

Parliamentary Assembly

Mr René van der Linden President of the Parliamentary Assembly

OSCE

Chairman-in-Office

Mr Karel De Gucht Chairman-in-office of the OSCE, Foreign Minister of Belgium

Mr Bertrand de Crombrugghe Permanent Representative of Belgium to the OSCE

Mr Charles Ghislain Permanent representative of Belgium to the Council of Europe

Secretariat General

Mr Marc Perrin de Brichambaut Secretary General of the OSCE

Mr Olksandr Pavlyuk Head of External Co-operation Section

Ms Biliana Hristova External Co-operation Officer

OSCE Parliamentary Assembly

Mr Spencer Oliver Secretary General, representing the President of the Parliamentary Assembly



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