Astana Declaration to be worthily evaluated, since we could activate OSCE's work - Serzhan Abdykarimov

ANA. December 24. KAZINFORM /Askar Bimendin/ Chairmanship of Kazakhstan in the OSCE has been named as a top rated event of year 2010. Sociologists say Kazakhstanis are pleased that the foreign guests and experts noted the high level of organization of the Summit in Astana and huge contribution of our country to ensuring security in the OSCE responsibility region. Frankly speaking, this fact has already become a reason of burst of national pride in the republic. Moreover, after the forum many experts note that Kazakhstan has succeeded in

recovering the OSCE which, in one Russian media's opinion, was more dead than alive.

However, some questions remain open still. For instance, why the so-called OSCE Action Plan was not adopted and whether it was so fundamental? Ambassador-at-Large, Director of the OSCE Department of the Kazakh Ministry of Foreign Affairs Serzhan Abdykarimov answered these questions and commented on the results of Kazakhstan's work within the OSCE presidency and told about Kazakhstan's plans to build relations with the OSCE in 2011 and in future.

Mr. Abdykarimov, what is the relevance and importance of the final documents of the OSCE Summit? What was the importance of the Action Plan for the Organization at this stage?

The Astana Declaration adopted following the Summit has defined and reaffirmed the norms, principles and commitments of the OSCE. This is of paramount importance for the Organization's further work.

But the OSCE has to fulfill new commitments now directed on strengthening cooperation with the Asian and Mediterranean partners on modernization of the confidence-building measures and control over armament. This relates to strengthening the regimes of the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe adopted in 1990 in Paris, modernization of the Vienna document providing for confidence-building measures in military-political spheres. This relates also to the protracted conflicts and strengthening the legal framework of the Organization and all other directions.

As for the Action Plan, the regrets on failure of its adoption did not diminish the political and ideological basis of the Astana Declaration.

I would like to say that the Action Plan has been agreed in all dimensions of the Organization and the only problem was agreement on the formulations on the protracted conflicts.

Kazakhstan did its best during its presidency in the OSCE, but taking into consideration that such conflicts have not been solved in the past 15-20 years, it would be incorrect to speak about their immediate resolution.

The major objective of Kazakhstan's chairmanship was maintaining the existing negotiations on these problems, their stimulation, which, in turn, we could do.

We coped with the task set to us by the Head of State. And I think that the Astana Declaration will be worthily evaluated in the nearest outlook since we managed to preserve the OSCE, activate the discussions and the work of the Organization.

Alongside, I would like to highlight that we developed that plan in a short span of time - in September-November 2010, thus in 3 months. We have performed huge work and all OSCE participating states have acknowledged it.

As you know, the content of the Istanbul Summit had been discussed for 3 years and the organizational-preparatory work had lasted for a year. As for Kazakhstan, we could develop the content of the recent Summit in 3 months and the same time was needed for organizational work.

Kazakhstan's work within the OSCE, in all appearances, has not finished with the Summit. How does our country intend to act in future?

Kazakhstan will continue chairing the Organization by 31 December, 2010 and the last event within the OSCE was a special donor conference on the Aral Sea problem held December 9-15 in Astana. The conference ended with adoption of the Third Aral Sea Basin Program (ASBP-3) and the Joint Declaration. About 300 projects united in 45 clusters and 4 directions are planned to be implemented within the Program. The donors, primarily, the World Bank, are to allocate USD 800 mln for this purpose. Besides, the International Aral Sea Rescue Fund is to invest up to USD 2 bln in the projects. These funds will be spent for solution of the Aral Sea problem and for realization of the ASBP-3 program.

No other activities are planned to be organized by the yearend, but as a member of the OSCE Troika we will also continue rendering assistance to our Lithuanian partners in order to implement the decisions of the Astana OSCE Summit.

Participation in the OSCE Troika next year provides for participation in adoption of various decisions, as well as attending various events, for example, the consultations with the international structures, in particular, the EU - OSCE Troika, Council of Europe - OSCE Troika, NATO - OSCE Troika. Around 4-5 events are planned to be organized on the foreign ministerial level next year.

Is there any progress in implementation of the Kazakh President's initiatives concerning introduction of new dimensions of the OSCE activity, the so-called baskets?

All the initiatives voiced out at the Summit by the President of Kazakhstan will be thoroughly and actively discussed both on expert and political levels, since their practical importance is evident. They are directed on enhancement of the Organization's work, raising its efficacy in strengthening tolerance and inter-faith harmony as well as in analyzing the problems of security in the OSCE region.

Therefore, these questions, naturally, will be debated not only within the OSCE, but also within the expert communities, by political scientists and international organizations. These are far-reaching initiatives, indeed.

Among Kazakhstan's achievements as the OSCE presiding country, special emphasis is laid on prevention of deterioration of the situation in Kyrgyzstan. In your opinion, is the OSCE capable of responding to such conflicts in other regions as quickly as Kazakhstan did?

When we assumed the OSCE chairing country's duties, we were getting ready for any unexpected situations. Such situation occurred in Kyrgyzstan. Here everything depended on promptness and political will of the OSCE chairperson-in-office and, as you know, by the estimation of all participating states we coped with this problem excellently: we used our potential and the OSCE tools as much as possible which helped us prevent further deterioration of the situation in this country.

It is not excluded that such conflicts can occur again; there are dozens of such conflict areas in the OSCE space. In this view, the Organization's objective is to respond to them adequately, efficiently and operatively.

That is why, President Nursultan Nazarbayev has initiated these ideas in order to put tolerance as a separate direction, because the conflicts often occur on the ground of inter-ethnic and inter-faith intolerance.

Or, for instance, there was a proposition to establish an OSCE Institute on strengthening the analytical ability of the Organization, its potential to forecast similar situations. As you may see, the initiatives of our President are aimed at prevention and quick resolution of the conflicts.

Thank you for the interview!

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