On February 23, the Center on the United States and Europe (CUSE) at Brookings hosted Dora Bakoyannis, Greek foreign minister and Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) chairperson-in-office, for an address on the tasks facing the organization.
Greece took over the OSCE chairmanship at the start of 2009, stating its commitment to work as an honest broker for participating states and uphold the OSCE’s role as a principal apparatus for ensuring peace, security and human rights in Europe and Central Asia. In her opening speech on January 15, Minister Bakoyannis outlined the priorities for the Greek chairmanship: continued discussions on the future of European security; peaceful resolution of protracted conflicts in the region; and promotion and implementation of OSCE counter-terrorism and border-security commitments, in addition to enhanced engagement with Afghanistan. In her remarks, Minister Bakoyannis offered thoughts on these priorities and also addressed transatlantic relations and issues related to the Middle East and southeastern Europe.
Minister Bakoyannis has been Greece’s foreign minister since February 2006. Prior to assuming the post, she was mayor of Athens from October 2002, the first female mayor of Athens in the history of modern Greece.
Brookings President Strobe Talbott provided introductory remarks. After the program, Minister Bakoyannis took audience questions in a session moderated by Visiting Fellow Steven Pifer.