Tsereteli in Rome 121118George Tsereteli addresses anti-corruption conference in Rome, 12 November 2018ROME, 12 November 2018 – Greater transparency is needed to achieve comprehensive security in the OSCE area, OSCE PA President George Tsereteli (MP, Georgia) said in a speech today in Rome. He noted that parliamentarians are essential partners in the fight against corruption.

“More transparency and accountability should be on the very top of our political agenda, especially in times when digital access has considerably raised the expectations of our citizens,” said President Tsereteli. “We must realize that corruption is not inevitable, no matter our traditional local culture. It is the responsibility of all our participating States, poor and wealthy alike, to increase our efforts in this fight.”

The PA President addressed the opening of the conference on “Developing anti-corruption strategies for the digital age: recent trends and best practices in the OSCE area,” held under the auspices of the Italian Chairmanship of the OSCE. The conference was co-organized by the International Affairs Institute and hosted by LUISS University.

In his remarks, President Tsereteli emphasized the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly’s role as an effective platform to share experiences and best practices, encouraging OSCE participating States to rely on parliamentarians and the PA’s acquis to increase efforts in combating corruption.

“Strong and sustained political will is essential to unroot corruption, while permanent oversight is needed to ensure that achievements are not reversed. This makes parliamentarians good partners to promote anti-corruption efforts,” said the PA President.

He also stressed that the OSCE PA is currently undergoing a review of its internal Code of Conduct for election observation missions to ensure the highest levels of integrity within the Assembly. “Towards this end, we are introducing more stringent procedures regulating appointments and conduct of observers in our election observation missions,” Tsereteli said.

On the margins of the conference, President Tsereteli, Head of the OSCE PA’s Cyprus Delegation Irene Charalambides, and Secretary General Roberto Montella met with the Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office on Combating Corruption, Paola Severino, to discuss synergies between the OSCE executive structures and the Parliamentary Assembly in enhancing transparency and accountability across the OSCE area.

Charalambides said: “It should go without saying that MPs across the OSCE area, particularly when they are committed in the fight against corruption, must enjoy enhanced protection. Corruption in all its manifestations and organized crime have strong links and thus our resolve must be stronger.”

President Tsereteli welcomed the Italian Chairmanship’s active work in the field of anti-corruption and expressed hope that future OSCE Chairmanships will maintain this strong engagement.

For the President’s full remarks, please click here.