The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) will launch a new programme on 1 November 2022 to help Ukraine implement reforms and to support the reconstruction of the country. The OSCE will thereby be continuing its engagement in support of Ukraine that it began more than 28 years ago. It will maintain a presence in both Kyiv and other parts of Ukraine, as the country continues to defend itself against Russia’s illegal war of aggression.
With Germany’s support, the like-minded unite against Russia’s attempts to block action
Acting in bad faith and using what is known as the consensus principle, by which all decisions require the approval of all OSCE participating States, Russia had forced the previous OSCE missions and project activities in Ukraine to end.
Therefore, OSCE Secretary General Helga Schmid, together with a voluntary group of like-minded members that includes Germany, and proceeding in close coordination with the organisation’s Ukrainian partners, has set up a new programme that enables the OSCE’s wide-ranging project activities in Ukraine to continue. Russia cannot veto the voluntary contributions that fund these efforts, as they lie outside of the regular OSCE budget.
The focus is on the consequences of the war, supporting the rule of law and defending human rights
What exactly is being done? The nearly 80 national and international staff members of the programme will support both the people and state authorities of Ukraine as they deal with the immediate consequences of the war. Where is the humanitarian need the greatest? How can psychological support be provided to the Ukrainians who have been traumatised by the war, and how can they be given access to legal counselling? How can additional demining capacity be built up, so that people can move around in their country and home towns? These are only some of the many activities that the OSCE can now continue to pursue. Other projects focus on promoting free and independent press coverage, fighting human trafficking, and providing further training to police officers, public prosecutors and judges. Many of the exceptionally wide-ranging project activities can go ahead, despite the ongoing war, and these are more important than ever given the extremely difficult situation that Ukrainians are in.
This is being made possible by, among other things, Germany’s large contribution: the Federal Foreign Office is providing 2.5 million euro in funding to the OSCE programme