MIL OSI Translation. Region: Germany / Deutschland –
Source: Federal Foreign OfficeVideo-Schalte Let me quote the former German Chancellor Willy Brandt: He said: “Now what belongs together is growing together”. He used these famous words to describe German reunification, although it is often overlooked that Willy Brandt’s view extended far beyond Germany. As someone who paved the way for the Helsinki Final Act, he knew that just as Eastern and Western Germany belong together, Western and Eastern Europe also belong together. That is the basic idea of the Paris Charter. I think it represents a moment of joy in German and European history: the end of the division of our country and our continent. And it stood for the hope of a “new age of democracy, peace and unity in Europe”, as the Charter itself says. In the past 30 years, Europe has indeed been more democratic, stable and prosperous than ever before its history – thanks to institutions like the European Union, NATO and the OSCE. But I think we cannot overlook the fact that the hope and optimism of 1990 are long gone. Conflicts have returned to our continent. And by annexing Crimea, Russia has openly broken the order established in Helsinki and Paris. What does all this mean for the idea of a European zone of peace, security and prosperity? I think the Paris Charter is more than an idealistic description of a better Europe. We have seen what it has achieved over the past 30 years. That is why we must strive today to learn from the Charter and to revive its spirit: First, I think the Paris Charter was the result of persistent multilateral diplomacy – across geopolitical divisions. It shows us that security requires strength and deterrence – but also dialogue and compromise. And let me say that with Joe Biden a new US president who is committed to multilateral diplomacy will soon move into the White House. He relies on strength against Russia. But he has also shown willingness to involve Moscow, for example in arms control – which is just as important today as it was during the Cold War. Europe and the OSCE should prepare for such an opening. I think this is our chance to promote the idea of cooperative European security, a security that cannot be achieved without Russia or even against Russia. Second, the Paris Charter laid the foundation for the OSCE. And in order to create a more stable European security architecture, we have to strengthen this organization. Since its inception, the OSCE has made important contributions to maintaining peace on our continent. Your special observer mission to Ukraine is helping to secure the current ceasefire. And in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, the OSCE and the Minsk Group could offer a platform for negotiations on a sustainable political solution. At the same time, the OSCE faces challenges that we must overcome. Your arms control architecture in the area of conventional weapons, for example, is in a sorry state. The structured dialogue that we launched in 2016 could complement the US-Russia talks on nuclear disarmament and a European dialogue on peace and security Opening up new perspectives on security. If the European voice is to be heard in such a dialogue, the EU must agree on a common position towards Russia, making full use of the five principles established by Federica Mogherini. This would also be a building block for the more sovereign Europe that Jean-Yves spoke about. Third, the Paris Charter showed us that comprehensive security means more than tanks, missiles and nuclear warheads. The European success story of the past 30 years is based on economic development and advances in human rights, freedom of the media and the rule of law. The idea of comprehensive security is the rock on which our security and prosperity are based. And this should always be remembered by those who suppress civil society, imprison journalists and harass the opposition in their countries. Conflicts like the one in Belarus cannot be resolved without respect for human rights, political participation and social justice, which is why we will not stop supporting the OSCE in all its dimensions, including economic, environmental and human ones 1990 wasn’t the end of the story. But the Paris Charter holds a vital message for us: security is based on trust. And trust is the result of a dialogue with everyone concerned. And this is exactly where any discussion about European security must begin. Your goal is nothing less than to hold together “what belongs together”. Many thanks.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and / or sentence structure not be perfect.