Poland's chairmanship of OSCE to focus on resolving conflicts, FM says

Poland will focus on the resolving of conflict and crisis situations when it assumes the chairmanship of the OSCE, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Poland will take over the rotating chairmanship of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) from Sweden on January 1, with the country's Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau taking up the role as the organisation’s Chairperson-in-Office.

This is the second time that Poland will chair the organisation, with its previous turn at the helm in 1998.

According to the statement released on Thursday by the Foreign Ministry, Rau will officially inaugurate Poland's OSCE chairmanship and present its priorities on January 13 in Vienna, where the organisation is based.

On December 3, Rau attended the 28th OSCE Ministerial Council in Stockholm meeting which informally marked the end of Sweden’s chairmanship of the OSCE.

He said at the time that Poland's efforts would focus on "actively preventing and mitigating conflicts and crisis situations," and added that Poland's OSCE chairmanship would be marked by "responsibility, realism and reliability."

"Poland is ready to work," Rau said at the closing session.

Established in 1973, the OSCE is the world's largest security-oriented inter-governmental organisation, with 57 members and 11 partners. Its areas of interest include arms control, human rights, freedom of the press and fair elections. OSCE decisions are consensus-based but are not legally binding.