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USA optimistic about Kazakhstan’s OSCE chairmanship bid

EurasiaNet, 18 October 2007

At a meeting with the Kazakh Secretary of State, Kanat Saudabayev, the US permanent representative to the OSCE, Julie Finley, has said that the USA views Kazakhstan’s application for the OSCE chairmanship in 2009 with great optimism, a report released by the president’s press service says.

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During the meeting in Astana today, Saudabayev and Finley discussed priority areas for Kazakhstan during its chairmanship of the OSCE in case the country’s application is approved by 56 members of the organization at a meeting of foreign ministers in Spain at the end of November.

"The world community respects Kazakhstan’s achievements gained in the process of establishing a democratic society and successful economy only within 15 years [of independence]. Kazakhstan’s application for the OSCE chairmanship is viewed by the USA with great optimism," the report says quoting Finley.

For his part, Saudabayev said during the meeting that one of the priorities for Kazakhstan during its chairmanship of the OSCE would be raising the efficiency of measures aimed at ensuring humanitarian security.

"Kazakhstan intends to step up the OSCE’s efforts to fight all forms of racism, intolerance and discrimination based on its own experience of interethnic accord, to strengthen the organization as a bridge between the West and the East in the dialogue of civilizations, to focus on expanding the OSCE’s presence in Central Asia and ensuring the stable development of the region, as well as on more active cooperation between the organization and Afghanistan," Saudabayev said.

"Positive consideration of Kazakhstan’s application could be a great contribution to further developing democracy not only in our country but in the entire region of Central Asia. The chairmanship of economically strong and dynamically developing democratic Kazakhstan over the OSCE will be not only a high assessment of our achievements during the years of independence, but it will also favorably influence the general situation in the organization, which, by this will demonstrate the equality of all members and raise its reputation," the report says quoting Saudabayev as saying.