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  Thursday, August 6, 2020
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The head of the world's largest regional security body will visit Russia Thursday
The head of the world's largest regional security body will visit Russia Thursday for talks with the country's senior politicians and officials. Marc Perrin de Brichambaut, the head of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, a 56-member political dialogue forum of northern hemisphere countries, will meet with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, lawmakers, and defense, security and election officials to discuss the organization's future development. "It has become a tradition for me to visit Moscow in the middle of the year to meet with representatives of one of the largest member states of the OSCE. We see this period as a watershed in the work under the current chairmanship, and it is time to discuss with the key players how and in what direction the organization should advance," de Brichambaut told RIA Novosti. The general secretary said the parties would exchange opinions on several lines of activity initiated by Russia in collaboration with other member states, including a two-day conference held in Vienna late last month, on Partnership of State Authorities, Civil Society and the Business Community in Combating Terrorism. "I am pleased to have the opportunity to discuss the current state of the OSCE with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, whose personal role in the organization's activity is important and significant," de Brichambaut said. De Brichambaut also stressed the importance of the Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty, an arms reduction pact originally signed between NATO and the Eastern Bloc, as a crucial instrument of security and confidence-building. He said that the emergency CFE session in Vienna held on Russia's request on June 12 through 15 could help settle all disagreements on the document. The original CFE treaty was signed in 1990, but was amended in 1999 in Istanbul in line with post-Cold War realities. The re-vamped agreement has so far only been ratified by Russia, Kazakhstan, Belarus and Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir Putin said in late April that Russia, which is concerned over NATO'S refusal to ratify the re-drafted treaty, could withdraw from the accord, following U.S. plans to deploy a missile shield in Poland and the Czech Republic. Moldova and Georgia have refused to ratify the adapted CFE until Russia withdraws its troops from their territory, an issue that other countries have also cited in their refusal to ratify the document.
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