OSCE Chairperson-in-Office and German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter-Steinmeier today departs on a three-day visit to the South Caucasus region, and will travel to Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia.
Before his departure, Steinmeier said that despite much turbulence in Europe, one must not lose sight of the situation in the South Caucasus. “The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict risks to re-escalate at any time,” said Steinmeier. “As Chair of the OSCE we have the responsibility to hedge this risk as far as possible.” As measures to this end Steinmeier named the consolidation of the ceasefire, confidence-building measures and negotiations that should soon be taken up.
Steinmeier also stressed that the settlement of territorial conflicts in Georgia has to remain high on the agenda. With a view to the Annual Session of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly that will take place in Georgia’s capital Tbilisi on 1-5 July, Steinmeier said: “By speaking at the opening session of the Parliamentary Assembly I wish to underline our support to strengthening parliamentarianism in the OSCE area.”