From 2 to 4 June 2014, Didier Burkhalter, Chairperson-in-Office of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and President of the Swiss Confederation, will hold political talks in three countries in the South Caucasus, the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of Switzerland reports.
The region is a priority of the Swiss OSCE Chairmanship in 2014 because of a number of long-standing conflicts involving these countries. Besides issues related to the OSCE, in Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia Mr Burkhalter will also discuss bilateral matters.
Together with the Western Balkans, the South Caucasus is one of the two regional priority areas which Switzerland has defined for its chairmanship of the OSCE in 2014 because of various long-standing conflicts in the region, namely in Nagorno-Karabakh and Georgia. Switzerland is working to promote dialogue between the conflicting parties within the framework of its chairmanship.
Mr Burkhalter’s first stop will be in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan, on 2 June 2014. On 3 June, Mr Burkhalter will hold discussions in Georgia about the regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Mr Burkhalter’s trip will end on 4 June with a visit to the Armenian capital Yerevan.
Besides OSCE themes, Mr Burkhalter’s talks in Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia will also focus on bilateral matters.
On 4 June, Mr Burkhalter will meet in Yerevan with the Armenian President, Serzh Sargsyan, and will also hold talks with Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian and National Assembly President Galust Sahakyan, as well as with representatives of the opposition.