The last two decades have witnessed dramatic changes in the European political landscape. Following the end of the Cold War and collapse of the Soviet Union, the NATO and European Union enlargement processes integrated new democracies into Europe and the Euro-Atlantic community, and helped underpin democracy, stability, and modernization in the region. One notable illustration of Europe’s broadening frontiers is Lithuania, a nation once under Soviet control that will soon hold the chairmanships of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the Community of Democracies in 2011, and the European Union presidency in 2013.
On November 16, the Center on the United States and Europe at Brookings hosted Lithuanian Foreign Minister and incoming OSCE Chairperson-in-Office Audronius Ažubalis for an address on the challenges facing the organization. In his remarks, Minister Ažubalis outlined the priorities and ideas that Lithuania will bring to its upcoming chairmanships, and the implications they will have for the Euro-Atlantic community as a whole. Following the foreign minister’s remarks, State Department Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Nancy McEldowney and former U.S. Representative to the OSCE Julie Finley provided comments.
Brookings Senior Fellow Steven Pifer provided introductory remarks and moderated the discussion. After the program, the speakers took audience questions.
Lithuanian Foreign Minister Audronius Ažubalis (left)
and Steven Pifer.