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The Human Dimension of the OSCE

People take part in a flashmob

People take part in a flashmob, © REUTERS/David Mdzinarishvili

29.09.2021 - Artikel

Human rights and fundamental freedoms are at the core of the OSCE's comprehensive concept of security. They form the so-called third, human dimension of our common security in the OSCE area.

The participating States agreed on this early and have declared the commitments undertaken in the field of the human dimension to be “matters of direct and legitimate concern to all participating States and do not belong exclusively to the internal affairs of the State concerned”.

The OSCE's work in the area of the human dimension focuses, among other things, on the protection of media freedom, minority rights, tolerance and non-discrimination, the rule of law, and the fight against anti-Semitism. As we jointly strive for comprehensive security, democratic participation through free and fair elections and the protection of minorities are just as crucial for conflict prevention as the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms, e.g. in border protection and the fight against terrorism.

The democratic process depends on free exchange among citizens, freedom of the media and freedom of assembly. The Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, the Representative on Freedom of the Media and the High Commissioner on National Minorities ensure that these rights are observed in all participating States.

The Federal Government, represented by the Permanent Mission of the Federal Republic of Germany to the OSCE in Vienna, is a firm advocate of the rule of law, democracy and respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in all fora of the OSCE.

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