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Hon. Christopher H. Smith, Chairman
Hon. Benjamin L. Cardin, Co-Chairman
For Immediate Release
January 31, 2012



WASHINGTON–The Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (U.S. Helsinki Commission) announced today the following hearing:

Ireland’s Leadership of the OSCE

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

11:30 a.m.

B-318 Rayburn House Office Building

Ireland’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Eamon Gilmore, will testify before the Helsinki Commission in his capacity as Chair-in-Office of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).  The hearing takes place as Ireland begins its year-long leadership of the 56-nation OSCE, based in Vienna, Austria, and best known for its work in promoting democracy, human rights and the rule of law.

Ireland assumes the stewardship of Europe’s largest security and human rights organization faced with the ongoing crackdown in Belarus, backsliding in Ukraine, the unsettled political situation in Russia with presidential elections set for March, issues stemming from the outbreak of conflict in Kyrgyzstan last year and the prospect of instability in Kazakhstan.  Additionally, the minister is expected to discuss areas of protracted conflict in the OSCE region.  Developments in Egypt and Tunisia, OSCE Mediterranean Partners for Cooperation, may also be raised.    

The following witness is scheduled to testify:

His Excellency Eamon Gilmore T.D., Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade of Ireland and OSCE Chair-in-Office for 2012




The Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, also known as the U.S. Helsinki Commission, is an independent agency of the Federal Government charged with monitoring compliance with the Helsinki Accords and advancing comprehensive security through promotion of human rights, democracy, and economic, environmental and military cooperation in 56 countries. The Commission consists of nine members from the U.S. Senate, nine from the House of Representatives, and one member each from the Departments of State, Defense, and Commerce.

Media Contact: Shelly Han
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Chairman Chris Smith and the OSCE ODIHR Director Michael Georg Link shake hands at the Winter Meeting of the OSCE PA in Vienna, Austria. (Feb. 2015)