On 9 April the OSCE Academy was honored to welcome the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic, Miroslav Lajčák, who visited the Academy within his official visit to Kyrgyzstan. The OSCE Chairperson-in-Office was accompanied by the Director of the OSCE Conflict Prevention Centre, Ambassador Marcel Peṧko, Head of the OSCE Programme Office in Bishkek, Ambassador Pierre von Arx, and Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Slovak Republic to the Republic of Kazakhstan and to the Kyrgyz Republic, Milan Kollar.
The Foreign Minister informed students of the OSCE Academy about the priorities of the Slovak Chairmanship for 2019 and summarized the first phase of its work and visits to several participating States. ”OSCE is seen as a partner. It is coming not to inspect, to mentor, to lecture or to criticize, but it’s there to help and to work together,”- said the Foreign Minister.
The introductory speech was followed by a Q&A session, where students were eager to learn about the progress in political cooperation between the EU and Armenia, particularly in light of the possible provision of the visa-free regime to Armenian citizens and prospects of further democratization; the level of involvement and contribution of the OSCE to the current peace talks between the USA and the Taliban and role of the Afghan Government in these peace talks; OSCE’s view on the current situation in Ukraine and the first round of the Presidential elections as well as other related issues. Finally, students asked the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office to guide them and give advice on career-building, to which Minister Lajčák replied pointing out the importance of passion and professionalism as prerequisites for success in any future job.
H. E. Mr. Miroslav Lajčák of Slovakia served as the President of the 72nd session of the UN General Assembly, which spanned from September 2017 to September 2018. Mr. Lajčák is also serving his fourth term as the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic.