NEW YORK – Cooperation between the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the United Nations, the situation in and around Ukraine, and the OSCE role in dealing with the crisis were discussed during a February 24 meeting between OSCE chairperson-in-office, Serbia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Ivica Dačić, and U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.
The meeting, also attended by OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier, was held on the eve of Mr. Dačić’s briefing to the U.N. Security Council on U.N.-OSCE cooperation.
Secretary General Ban and Chairperson Dačić underlined the need for a peaceful solution to the crisis in Ukraine, emphasizing the opportunity created by the agreement reached in Minsk on February 12. They also stressed that the OSCE and U.N. presences in Ukraine should explore ways to strengthen cooperation, especially on humanitarian and human rights issues.
Chairperson Dačić commended diplomatic efforts by the Trilateral Contact Group, adding that concrete steps for implementing the package of measures adopted on February 12 have been designed, but should only be implemented once a verifiable ceasefire has been established. He stressed that the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission, which continues to provide objective reporting and data from the conflict area despite many challenges, is unique and invaluable.
In the year that marks the 70th anniversary of the U.N. Charter and the 40th anniversary of the Helsinki Final Act, the two organizations should keep on working hand-in-hand, Secretary General Ban said. He commended the OSCE – “a broad, consensus-based regional organization” – for its contribution to international cooperation, conflict prevention and resolution.