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The OSCE Chairman-in-Office and the Republic of Kazakhstan

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This article will examine the role of the OSCE Chairmanship and discuss the Republic of Kazakhstan's bid for its leadership in 2009. The Chairmanship is a prestigious position which heads the largest regional security body in the world. Even in today's post-Cold War reality, the OSCE remains an important organization and has developed a body of sophisticated human rights and democratization commitments politically binding all 56 participating States. Countries serving as the Chairman-in-Office are empowered to guide the Organization in a variety of enduring ways that will outlive their one-year leadership. The Chairman-in-Office is also expected to lead by example — perfection is not required, but a demonstrated commitment to fulfill OSCE obligations domestically has traditionally been an important prerequisite. The article will highlight the lasting impression which a Chairmanship can make, consider the prospect of a Kazakh Chairmanship and review Kazakhstan's rights record and attitude towards the Organization.

Affiliations: 1: Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe


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