Civil society recommendations to the participants of the 2013 OSCE Ministerial Council meeting in Kiev

The Civic Solidarity Platform, a network of more than 50 human rights NGOs from throughout the OSCE region, convened the 2013 OSCE Parallel Civil Society Conference in Kiev on 2-4 December, building upon the tradition of OSCE parallel civil society conferences in Astana in 2010, Vilnius in 2011, and Dublin in 2012. Civic Solidarity developed the attached policy document containing civil society analysis and recommendations on alarming human dimension issues across the OSCE region and on human dimensions issues in Ukraine, in light of the country’s OSCE Chairmanship.

It also includes recommendations for increasing the efficiency of the OSCE human dimension process. Activists from Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Belgium, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Moldova, the Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Serbia, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, the USA and other countries discussed the document and formally adopted it at the Parallel Civil Society Conference.

The outcome document is addressed to governments of the OSCE participating States who will be participating in the upcoming Kiev meeting of the Ministerial Council, as well as all OSCE institutions working in the human dimension, including the current and the incoming Chairmanships, the Permanent Council, the Human Dimension Committee, ODIHR, the OSCE Secretariat, the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, the OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities, the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, and the OSCE field missions, offices and centres.

We hope this analysis and the recommendations that flow from it will be studied carefully at the Ministerial Council meeting and in the work of OSCE thereafter.  We look forward to reaction from all interested stakeholders. While some of our recommendations may be implemented immediately, others relate to systemic problems and will require consistent effort over a longer period of time. We express our commitment to continue to actively engage in the work of OSCE in the spirit of the Helisnki Principles and our determination to contribute to the full realization of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, democracy and the rule of law throughout the OSCE region.