Note:Your browser doesn't correctly display this page because of a bad stylesheets interpretation. This is probably due to an old browser version.

[Luxembourg 2005 Presidency of the Council of the European Union]
 Version française        

You are here : Home > News > Speeches > June 2005 > OSCE, Permanent Council No 559 : Response to the report of the Head of the OSCE Office in Baku, Azerbaijan
Print this page Send this page

OSCE, Permanent Council No 559 : Response to the report of the Head of the OSCE Office in Baku, Azerbaijan

Date of Speech : 16-06-2005

Place : Vienna

Speaker : Jacques Reuter, Permanent Representative of Luxembourg at the OSCE

Policy area : General Affairs and External Relations

Mr. Chairman,

on behalf of the European Union I would like to extend a warm welcome to Ambassador Maurizio Pavesi and to thank him for his comprehensive report.

The EU notes the close- co-operation of the Office with Azerbaijani authorities in order to implement OSCE principles and commitments as well as the strong interaction with international partners represented in the country. In this respect, the EU also underlines the importance of co-ordination and co-operation with the Council of Europe. The European Union praises the Office’s role as a focal point for co-ordinating activities related to the election process. The European Union underlines the ongoing effort by the Office to foster dialogue among political parties both belonging to the majority and to the opposition and welcomes the recently agreed upon “framework for the conduct of political parties�? as an important standard in the run up to the Parliamentary Elections.

In that regard and in the context of Azerbaijan’s rapprochement to Euro-Atlantic structures, the EU would like to reiterate the importance of the holding of free and fair parliamentary elections. The EU is ready to help ensure that the electoral process is well organized.

There can be no free and fair elections without free media. The EU attaches high importance to activities of the Centre in this field in close cooperation with the Representative on Freedom of the Media, including monitoring of trials of journalists. In this context, we also urge the Azerbaijani authorities to rectify current shortcomings to the registration process of NGOs.

The EU would also like to underline the importance of a thorough reform of the judiciary. We urge the Azerbaijani authorities to follow the recommendations contained in the OSCE report on trial monitoring and to continue the work of the Group of Experts in order to take concrete measures for the implementation of the report’s recommendations.

In the same vein, the Union stresses the importance of institution building, especially the seminars for judges, prosecutors and defence counsels, also in the perspective of reform of the judiciary. Noteworthy are also the Office’s efforts aimed at improving the Bar Examination process and more generally, the status of the legal profession.

The EU shares the Office's concern about the current failure of the Azerbaijani authorities to effectively address corruption and calls on the government of Azerbaijan to take further steps to promote good governance. The EU welcomes the activities of the Office in the Economic and Environmental Dimension in this regard.

Mr. Chairman,

The European Union expresses its appreciation for the Office’s activities in the politico-military dimension and encourages the Office’s involvement in the disposal of rocket fuel stocks as well as of scattered stocks of highly unstable munitions which represent a threat to human security. The European Union also follows with interest the implementation of the Police Assistance Programme.

The Union fully shares the Office’s appeal to the Government of Azerbaijan to join the Optional Protocol to the UN Convention against Torture and encourages the ongoing endeavours to support prison reform by developing, together with the Azerbaijani authorities, a monitoring mechanism and by training NGO’s for that purpose.

The European Union again congratulates Ambassador Pavesi for his thorough report and wishes him as well as his dedicated staff continued success in their mission.

The Acceding Countries Bulgaria and Romania and the Candidate Countries Turkey and Croatia* align themselves with this statement.

* Croatia continues to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process

This page was last modified on : 20-06-2005

Top Top