OSCE Centre in Astana conducts regional seminar on democratic oversight of security sector in Central Asia


OSCE Centre in Astana conducts regional seminar on democratic oversight of security sector in Central AsiaFostering dialogue and co-operation between ministries, parliamentarians and senior military personnel involved in the oversight of armed forces is the focus of a regional OSCE-held seminar that started today.

The three-day seminar aims to promote the implementation of the OSCE Code of Conduct on Politico-Military Aspects of Security, a landmark document in security sector governance. The event brings together experts from Central Asia who will discuss their practical experience, existing challenges and future initiatives in promoting the implementation of the Code, particularly in relation to the democratic control of military, paramilitary and internal security forces, as well as of intelligence services and the police, the OS Centre in Astana said.

The OSCE Code of Conduct on Politico-Military Aspects of Security is a key document for the 56 participating States of the OSCE in the field of exercising democratic oversight of armed, internal and security forces, including through parliamentary oversight.  It is implemented through an annual information exchange subsequently made public on the OSCE’s website.

“The OSCE Code of Conduct provides guidelines for reforming OSCE participating States’ security forces in accordance with democratic norms, principles and procedures,” said Ambassador Natalia Zarudna, the Head of OSCE Centre in Astana addressing the participants. “Today’s event provides a good opportunity for exchanging views and identifying areas of common interest and co-operation on the implementation of the Code of Conduct in Central Asia.”

In his address Kazakhstan’s Deputy Defence Minister Bagdat Maikeev said: “Since the adoption of the Code of Conduct, Kazakhstan has sought to adhere to all of its provisions, and actively participated in its development and put maximum effort into the full implementation of relevant international commitments, including those related to the annual exchange of information.” He added that the events like this are a useful addition to the process.

The seminar will also cover issues related to the effective leadership of armed forces, the rights of armed forces personnel, and their accountability to state authorities.

The event is organized by the OSCE Centre in Astana and Kazakhstan’s Ministry of Defence with the support of the OSCE Secretariat’s Conflict Prevention Centre.