Russia, CIS Accuse OSCE of Double Standards

MosNews, Russia
July 9 2004

Russia, CIS Accuse OSCE of Double Standards

Russia and eight other ex-Soviet states accused Europe’s biggest
security and human rights watchdog on Thursday of failing to respect
their sovereignty, Reuters reported.

`In part (the OSCE) does not respect such fundamental principles …
as non-interference in internal affairs and respect of national
sovereignty,’ Reuters quoted a statement signed by Armenia, Belarus,
Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Ukraine and

The 55-nation Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe
(OSCE), based in Vienna, whose activities include monitoring
elections, has repeatedly accused former Soviet states of holding
elections that failed to live up to democratic standards.

In response, Russia has complained of double standards at the OSCE,
which it says criticizes human rights and democracy failings in
Eastern Europe, but does not denounce similar shortcomings to the

Of the OSCE’s 18 field activities, 12 are in the former Soviet Union.

`It is of concern that OSCE field missions focus not on their
mandated role to help the authorities of the receiving state…, but
exclusively on monitoring human rights and democratic institutions,’
the CIS statement added.

The European Union issued a statement expressing its `serious
concern’ at some of the CIS states’ comments, Reuters reported.