BERLIN, January 1. /TASS/. The settlement of the Ukrainian crisis will be a priority task for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) whose chairmanship has been assumed by Germany this year, the German Foreign Ministry said in a statement released on Friday.
"The facilitation of a political solution of the conflict around Ukraine and in Ukraine will remain a priority for the OSCE in 2016 as well," the document quotes German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier as saying. "Germany will contribute to these efforts with all the determination and with the help of all its capabilities."
The OSCE, the world’s largest regional organization dealing with security issues, comprises 57 countries located in North America, Europe and Central Asia. Founded in 1973, it was called the Conference for Security and Cooperation in Europe. The organization aims to prevent conflicts in the region, settle crises and deal with the aftermath of the conflicts.
All OSCE member-countries enjoy equal status. Decisions are taken by consensus. The decisions are not legally binding, but have great political significance. The foreign minister of a country taking over the chairmanship for the current year becomes the OSCE Chairpeson-in-Office (Steinmeier in case of Germany). The chairperson directs the OSCE current activities, coordinates the work of its agencies and institutions, represents the organization, oversees and contributes to the resolution of conflicts and crisis situations.