I am making this statement in my national capacity and also on behalf of Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Montenegro, Norway, the Netherlands, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America.
We are very pleased to welcome the Head of the OSCE Mission in Kosovo, Ambassador Michael Davenport, back to the Permanent Council. We recognize and value the outstanding work carried out by the OSCE Mission in Kosovo (OMiK) to support the country’s authorities in strengthening their institutions and promote stability and security in the region.
We recall that the Mission is the largest OSCE Field Operation in the Balkans and plays an essential role in Kosovo. We particularly appreciate OMiK’s close and effective partnerships with Kosovo institutions, especially with municipalities and civil society organizations, as well as its creative and persistent work across the core pillars of its mandate on human and community rights, democratization, and security and public safety. Moreover, we applaud and support the work of the Mission on the ground via its five Regional Centers and its visible presence in all 38 of Kosovo’s municipalities, which are critical to the OSCE’s early warning and conflict prevention function. We also strongly support OMiK’s continued commitment to women’s rights and women’s empowerment and gender equality, and its efforts to mainstream these aspects throughout the Mission’s work.
We recognize that, as a matter of good governance within our organization, one of the best ways to understand the impact of the work of OSCE Field Operations is to hear directly from the partners and beneficiaries on the ground. Therefore, it is essential to have contact among participating States and stakeholders, partners, and interlocutors who are co-operating with the OSCE Mission in Kosovo. We welcome this practice and encourage it to be continued in the future.
Thank you, Mr. Chair.