PRAGUE. Yesterday, the first session of the OSCE Permanent Council held in Vienna under the new chairmanship by Netherlands. The OSCE Chairman-in- Office, the Netherlands Foreign Minister Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, formally presented his intentions for carrying the duty in 2003. He said that strict adherence to the principles of good governance and democracy will help to protect our societies from the threat of instability and insecurity: "The rule of law and the full participation of all citizens in political life are essential in the fight against these dangers, including the threat of terrorism. The only societies that have the strength to challenge extremists in their midst are those where the right to question is beyond dispute."
Kyrgyz Ambassador to the OSCE, Alikbek Jekshenkulov told the session that Kyrgyzstan supports an idea of having dialog between OSCE and other international and regional organizations. OSCE officially opened its Academy in Bishkek last month and it has financially supported the newly established position of Ombudsman in the country. Jekshenkulov said that Kyrgyz Government is ready to maintain its cooperation with the OSCE in dynamic and transparent ways.