OSCE head meets with Helsinki Commission

Feb. 25, 2009 at 3:55 PM

WASHINGTON, Feb. 25 (UPI) -- The head of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe called U.S. engagement with the OSCE critical for addressing security challenges.

Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis, OSCE chairperson-in-office, is in the United States until Friday meeting with top U.S. authorities on security concerns in Europe. On Tuesday, Bakoyannis met with the U.S. Helsinki Commission and called for fresh engagement and a new dialogue to collaborate on overcoming collective security challenges, the OSCE reported.

Bakoyannis said the current security climate in Europe, with ongoing challenges in Georgia and elsewhere, requires firm U.S. engagement in the OSCE.

"U.S. engagement in the OSCE is more important than ever if we are to address major questions, such as the future of Euro-Atlantic security, and to use effectively the many tools provided by the organization to address both hard security challenges and soft security issues ranging from human trafficking to climate change," Bakoyannis said in a statement.

Bakoyannis, who met with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Wednesday, is scheduled to address the officials at the United Nations on Friday.

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