Stockholm, 5 December 2021 (TDI): The 28th OSCE Ministerial Council held in Sweden from 2 to 3 December, organized by OSCE Chairpersonship. The Foreign Ministers of 57 OSCE member states get the privilege of attending the annual meeting at the invitation of the OSCE Chairperson-in-office, Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ann Linde.

However, it aimed the meeting to review and appraise the Organization’s activities and reinforce the security issue dialogue in the OSCE area.

Final Declarations

At the 28th OSCE Ministerial Council, it espoused the following conclusions and declarations in Stockholm:

  1. The Ministerial Council decides that the Twenty-Ninth Meeting of the OSCE Ministerial Council will be held in Lodz on 1 and 2 December 2022.
  2. Moreover, it decides that Finland will exercise the function of the OSCE Chairmanship in the year 2025. The delegation of the Russian Federation said:

In joining the consensus regarding the OSCE Ministerial Council decision on Finland’s Chairmanship of the OSCE in the year 2025, it is our understanding that Finland will adhere closely to all the provisions of the 2002 Porto Ministerial Council Decision No. 8 on the role of the OSCE Chairmanship-in-Office, ensuring that it does not deviate in its actions from the positions agreed by all the participating States

  1. Furthermore, it stated on the Negotiations on the Transdniestrian Settlements Process in the 5+2 format.
OSCE commitments on climate by OSCE Chairperson
Final press conference of 28th Ministerial Council, Stockholm, 3 December 2021. (Government Offices of Sweden / Ninni Andersson)

The OSCE participating States have acknowledged how to work cooperatively to counter the challenges caused by climate change.

Chairperson-in-Office Ann Linde said, “This is truly ground-breaking. Climate change is the defining issue of our time, and we all need to do our share. The OSCE, as the world’s largest regional security organization, has an important part to play in finding preventing and mitigating measures that can make a difference for the security of the people in the OSCE region.”

OSCE’s role in strengthening good security sector governance
Panelists speak at the side-event on security sector governance and reform, Stockholm, 3 December 2021.

Good security sector governance succors in building the population’s trust and provides steadiness by expending democratic civilian control, endorsing human rights, women empowerment, the rule of law which contributes to preventing conflicts.

Guidelines on Security Sector Governance and Reform for OSCE staff, updated second edition, were revealed at the 28th OSCE Ministerial Council in Stockholm, on the 3rd of December 2021.

Ambassador Radomir Bohac, Permanent Representative of Slovakia and Chair of the Group of Friends of Security Sector Governance and Reform (SSG/R) in the OSCE added that:
“Discussions on SSG/R clearly demonstrate how much the agenda has been evolving within the OSCE in these past years. 46 participating States signing up to this year’s Group of Friends Statement is a clear sign of support and an important acknowledgment of the relevance that SSG/R has in the OSCE context.”

Rebuild trust and common ground amongst OSCE Participants
Family photo of OSCE Foreign Ministers and Heads of Delegations at the 28th OSCE Ministerial Council in Stockholm, 2 December 2021.

In the opening of Ministerial Council, Minister Linde said we require common solutions to acknowledge the violation and multiple crises across the region on the 2nd of December in Stockholm.

Chairperson-in-Office, while addressing participants, highlighted the opportunity to rebuild trust and common ground among the participants’ states of OSCE.

“With the support of all participating States, the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly will continue building partnerships to improve the way the OSCE operates and responds to our common challenges,” she said.

OSCE Secretary General Helga Maria Schmid said in her report to the Ministerial Council: “This Ministerial Council is also an opportunity to highlight the remarkable human impact this organization is having across the region through its activities. From facilitating localized ceasefires in Ukraine that enable the repair of essential infrastructure, to removing harmful rocket fuel in Kyrgyzstan. Our comprehensive approach to security makes a real difference to the lives of millions of people.”