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The OSCE in perspective, six years of service, six questions and a few answers

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After two terms as Secretary General of the OSCE (2005-2011) the author reaches mixed conclusions on the organization and its future. The OSCE remains a unique security forum spanning three continents, it has an exceptional toolbox and an original concept of multidimensional security, it achieves remarkable results with limited resources and acts as a catalyst for networks in many fields. Yet its foundations in hard security are becoming fragile, its governance system is unwieldy, it commands less and less attention in most capitals and its potential as a laboratory for ideas and policies is underutilised. The organisation is slowly being marginalised by other organizations in spite of the worthy efforts of dedicated chairmen-in-office supported by the secretariat and institutions. It needs to consolidate its niche activities and to be given a fresh impetus by its key sponsors.


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