From: Exit News
OSCE Chair Rama to Belarus’ Lukashenko: Please, Give Dialogue a Chance

OSCE Chair-in-Office Edi Rama has reiterated the organization’s offer to facilitate a dialogue between stakeholders in the Belarus crisis, calling on President Lukashenko to seize this moment and avoid possible confrontation.

In his special address to the OSCE Permanent Council in Vienna on Friday regarding the Belarus crisis, Albanian Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Edi Rama stressed the need for mutual understanding and cooperation between all sides in order to move towards a solution.

He reiterated the OSCE offer for the current and incoming OSCE CiOs to become facilitators in the “necessary dialogue, to help Belarus out of this situation.”

“We truly hope that there is a positive response to this offer from the Government of Belarus. I am ready to make it work – to engage, to listen, to understand and to support, in every possible way I can,” Rama noted.

The OSCE Chair stressed the urgent need for Belarus to improve human rights in the country.

“There has to be an immediate and significant improvement in the national human rights situation. Not sometime in the future, but right now, with no ‘ifs or buts’. It is inconceivable to believe there can be a credible process of dialogue if one side appears keen to undo the very essence of a pluralistic society.”

Rama highlighted that the OSCE is a reliable organization to facilitate the dialogue, that it would not interfere in the internal affairs of Belarus: “The situation must be resolved in Minsk and among the people of Belarus, in full respect for their sovereignty, their independence and their human rights.”

“To the Belarus authorities: please, give this offer a chance. Seize this moment of opportunity for Belarus to move from confrontation and strife to dialogue and reconciliation. To all OSCE members, let us try to make this work, hard though we know this will be,” Rama concluded his address.

He also told journalists in Vienna today that Belarus has not refused the OSCE offer. Its ambassador told OSCE officials that Belarus will reply in due time, according to Rama.