Berlin Declaration Banner smaller

Helsinki 40 OSCE PA LogoCOPENHAGEN, 23 September 2014 -- The first in the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly's Helsinki +40 series of international seminars aimed at fomenting reform of the OSCE takes place this Thursday, 25 September, in Moscow.

The event, hosted by the Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC), will bring together OSCE parliamentary leaders, top Russian lawmakers, OSCE experts and academicians to evaluate the Organization's past and chart lines of action to ensure its continued effectiveness.

Titled "Helsinki +40: Prospects for Strengthening the OSCE," the seminar will consider tough questions of organizational reform in light of the Ukrainian crisis; how to secure the OSCE's future amid new and persisting security challenges; and how the Organization can best live up to its ideals as we approach the 40th anniversary of its founding document, the Helsinki Final Act of 1975.

The event's plenary session will open with remarks by Helsinki +40 Project Co-Chair Joao Soares (MP, Portugal) and RIAC President Igor Ivanov.

The session's featured speakers include OSCE PA President Ilkka Kanerva (MP, Finland); OSCE PA Secretary General Spencer Oliver; Alexey Meshkov, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia; Mikhail Margelov, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of Russia's Federation Council; and Alexey Pushkov, Chairman of the International Affairs Committee of the Russian State Duma.

Roundtable discussions will feature presentations by Andrei Zagorski, Head of Department at the Institute of World Economy and International Relations - Russian Academy of Sciences, and Ambassador Javier Ruperez, former OSCE PA President and participant in the drafting of the Helsinki Final Act.

Invited officials, scholars and members of the OSCE PA's Ad Hoc Committee on Transparency and Reform of the OSCE will also participate.

On 26 September, OSCE PA leaders and other selected seminar participants will discuss the OSCE of today and tomorrow with students from the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO University).

For the complete programme, click here.

The OSCE PA's Helsinki +40 Project will continue after Moscow with seminars at the German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF) in Washington; The Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI) in Stockholm; the Danish Institute for International Studies (DIIS) in Copenhagen; and the Belgrade Fund for Political Excellence (BFPE) in the Serbian capital.

The results of the Project will be presented as a final report during the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly's 24th Annual Session in Helsinki on 6 July 2015.

For more information, click here.