Commemorative Publication marks 20 years of key OSCE Document on Promoting Democratic Control of Armed and Security Forces

Media release, 05.12.2014

The Commemorative Publication 20 Years of OSCE Code of Conduct on Politico-Military Aspects of Security was presented by Didier Burkhalter, Chairperson-in-Office of the OSCE 2014 and President of the Swiss Confederation and solemnly handed over to Lamberto Zannier, OSCE Secretary General representing the OSCE Community. The Commemorative Publication was produced by International Relations Defence in the Swiss Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sports (DDPS), and features contributions from academics and representatives of selected OSCE participating States, presenting the milestones achieved in the first 20 years of the Code’s existence as well as perspectives and ideas for its further development within and beyond the OSCE.

Didier Burkhalter, Chairperson-in-Office of the OSCE 2014 and President of the Swiss Confederation  solemnly hands over the Commemorative Publication to Lamberto Zannier, OSCE Secretary General
Didier Burkhalter, Chairperson-in-Office of the OSCE 2014 and President of the Swiss Confederation solemnly hands over the Commemorative Publication to Lamberto Zannier, OSCE Secretary General. © FDFA

Didier Burkhalter, Swiss Foreign Minister and OSCE Chairperson-in-Office presented a Commemorative Publication on 20 years of the OSCE Code of Conduct on Politico-Military Aspects of Security to the OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier at a special event held during the 21st OSCE Ministerial Council in Basel.

The Commemorative Publication pays tribute to the unique and remarkable history, development, achievements and outreach of the OSCE’s key document for the democratic control of the armed forces and the security sector – the OSCE Code of Conduct on Politico-Military Aspects of Security, which was adopted in 1994.

The Commemorative Publication was edited and produced by International Relations Defence, Armed Forces Staff, in the Swiss Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sports (DDPS) as a contribution to the politico-military dimension of the OSCE. The publication features contributions from academics, representatives of selected OSCE participating States and the OSCE Secretariat, and presents the milestones achieved in the first 20 years of the Code’s existence as well as perspectives and ideas for its further development within and beyond the OSCE.

“The Code was a real breakthrough in politico-military matters. This toolkit for soft security- and confidence-building was the first multilateral instrument embodying norms and principles to regulate and control, both, at national and international levels, the armed forces and the security sector at large,” said Burkhalter. “The Code continues to be uncontested by all participating States as the main norm setting document recalling inter-state principles as well as intra-state norms on democratic control of the armed and security forces.”

Handing over the Commemorative Publication to the OSCE Secretary General, Burkhalter said that raising awareness about and dissemination of the Code of Conduct had been one of the priorities of Switzerland’s Chairmanship of the OSCE in 2014.

Zannier thanked Burkhalter for his leadership adding that the Publication offers good food for thought and inspiration.

“Twenty years ago the negotiators of the Code at the Budapest Summit showed a great degree of foresight: The prescriptions of the Code remain as relevant as ever,” said Zannier.

The Commemorative Publication is intended for the general public as well as parliamentarians, practitioners, experts and academics dealing with the Code of Conduct and having followed or participated in its continuous development, implementation and application over the last two decades.

Co-Editors and selected authors of the Commemorative Publication together with the OSCE CiO Didier Burkhalter and the OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier – from left to right: LtCol Thomas Schmidt, Mr Fabian Grass, Col Prasenjit Chaudhuri, Col (GS) Hans Lüber, CiO Didier Burkhalter, Sec Gen Lamberto Zannier, LtCol Detlef Hempel, Dr. Alexandre Lambert, Col (GS) Anton Eischer
Co-Editors and selected authors of the Commemorative Publication together with the OSCE CiO Didier Burkhalter and the OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier – from left to right: LtCol Thomas Schmidt, Mr Fabian Grass, Col Prasenjit Chaudhuri, Col (GS) Hans Lüber, CiO Didier Burkhalter, Sec Gen Lamberto Zannier, LtCol Detlef Hempel, Dr. Alexandre Lambert, Col (GS) Anton Eischer. © FDFA