All sides will benefit from the decision to deploy an OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, Swiss OSCE Chair says
Bern, March 21, 2014 – The decision of the Permanent Council of the OSCE today to deploy a Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine was welcomed by the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office and Swiss Foreign Minister, Didier Burkhalter.
Consensus on the mandate could be reached today due to the readiness of all participating States to continue dialogue and search for compromise even under difficult circumstances, Burkhalter said. All sides will benefit from this decision, he continued. Once more, the OSCE has proven to be a vital framework to foster dialogue, identify common ground, and accomplish meaningful results despite differences. “The OSCE and the Swiss Chairmanship”, Burkhalter added, “will continue their efforts to rebuild bridges and find cooperative solutions to the major political and security challenges that Europe is now confronted with.”
The Permanent Council decided in a special session on Ukraine today to deploy an OSCE Special Monitoring Mission of international observers to Ukraine: the mission’s aim is to contribute to reducing tensions and fostering peace, stability and security.
Throughout the country, the mission will gather information and report on the security situation as well as establish and report facts regarding incidents, including those concerning alleged violations of fundamental OSCE principles and commitments. It will also monitor the human rights situation in the country, including the rights of national minorities. Facilitating dialogue on the ground to promote normalization of the situation is a further task of the mission.
The mandate of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission forsees deployment throughout Ukraine, to the east, south and west of the country. Advance teams will be deployed within 24 hours of the adoption of this decision. Initially, the mission will consist of 100 civilian monitors and may expand by a total of up to 400 additional monitors. The monitoring mission will be deployed for a period of six months, its mandate can be renewed for further six month periods by decision of the Permanent Council if requested by Ukraine.