Vienna, June 24, 2014 - Chairperson-in-Office and Swiss Minister of Foreign Affairs, Didier Burkhalter, held several bilateral talks regarding the situation in Ukraine at the margins of the OSCE Annual Security Review Conference today in Vienna.
Burkhalter met with the new Ukrainian Foreign Minister, Pavlo Klimkin, to discuss the implementation of the peace plan of Ukrainian President, Petro Poroshenko. They agreed to continue to consult closely on potential roles of the OSCE. He also had an exchange on Ukraine with the Austrian President, Heinz Fischer.
In a meeting with the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, Burkhalter commended the President for asking the Federation Council to call off the decision allowing the use of military force in Ukraine. He also stressed the importance of an effective control of the Ukrainian-Russian border. The two Presidents discussed the need for the ceasefire to turn into a durable cessation of violence, in order to allow for the implementation of all elements of President Poroshenko’s peace plan. In this context, a further round of consultations in Eastern Ukraine could contribute to the launching of a political process. Burkhalter stressed the importance of Russian support in getting the detained SMM monitors released without delay and unconditionally.
Burkhalter was in Vienna to deliver the opening address at this year’s Annual Security Review Conference of the OSCE; in his speech he argued that the Ukrainian crisis was also a crisis of European security. Pointing to the need to reconsolidate European security as a common project, he underlined that the OSCE in the Ukraine crisis was demonstrating its conflict management capabilities and proposed to further strengthen the organization as an anchor of cooperative security.
Burkhalter also had a meeting with Serbian Minister of Foreign Affairs Ivica Dačić, who will take over as Chairperson-in-Office in the coming year. They discussed their consecutive Chairmanships and ways of continuing close cooperation in 2015.