Ukraine calls for Russia’s expulsion from OSCE
Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba (right) and the chairperson of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Bujar Osmani (left) hold a joint news conference in Kyiv, on Monday, October 16, 2023. PAP/EPA/THOMAS PETER / POOL

Ukraine calls for Russia’s expulsion from OSCE

Ukraine has urged the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) to ban Russia from its ranks, warning that otherwise the body faces a “slow death”. It is reported by with reference to “Polskie Radio”.

The appeal was issued by Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba in Kyiv on Monday, the AFP news agency reported.

Kuleba held a joint press conference in the Ukrainian capital with the visiting current chairperson of the OSCE, North Macedonia’s Foreign Minister Bujar Osmani.

Ukraine’s top diplomat said: “”Moscow has essentially taken the OSCE hostage, manipulating the consensus principle and thereby destroying the organization from within,” as quoted by the RBC-Ukraine news agency.

Since Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, the OSCE has struggled to operate as Russia has blocked all major decisions, which require consensus, the AFP news agency reported.

Kuleba told reporters in Kyiv: “Everything Russia does in the OSCE nowadays is killing this organisation.”

Ukraine’s foreign minister added: “The situation in the OSCE is very complicated, painful, but the choice is very simple – either a slow death with Russia, or a new life without it.”

Ukraine has repeatedly called for Russia to be banned from international organisations, such as the G20, the United Nations Security Council and major sporting bodies, over its full-scale aggression, the AFP news agency reported.

Meanwhile, Moscow has accused the West of trying to “seize” the OSCE, which it says has strayed from its founding principles, according to news outlets. 

The OSCE’s current chairperson, Osmani, said in Kyiv that Ukraine was a top priority during North Macedonia’s chairmanship of the body in 2023, the RBC-Ukraine news agency reported.

Founded to ease tensions between East and West during the Cold War, the OSCE helps its members coordinate on issues like human rights and arms control, the AFP news agency reported. 

The OSCE also sends observers to conflicts, as well as elections around the world, and runs programs that aim to combat human trafficking and ensure media freedom, according to officials.

The OSCE says it works to prevent conflicts under “a comprehensive approach to security that encompasses politico-military, economic and environmental, and human aspects.” 

The organisation brings together 57 participating states, including European countries, as well as the United States and Canada, among other members. 

Poland chaired the OSCE in 2022. 

Tuesday is day 601 of Russia’s war on Ukraine.

Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, 2022, launching the largest military campaign in Europe since World War II.


Source: AFP/Kyiv Post, RBC-Ukraine, OSCE