1. Speicherstadt und Elbphilharmonie Hamburg - Host of the OSCE Ministerial Council 2016
  2. Logo #OSCEyouth - from participation to more security
  3. OSZE-Troika mit den Außenministern Österreichs, Deutschlands und Serbiens mit OSZE-Generalsekretär Zannier OSCE Troika focuses on Ukraine and Nagorno-Karabakh
Speicherstadt und Elbphilharmonie

Hamburg - Host of the OSCE Ministerial Council 2016

Hamburg is an excellent choice to host the OSCE Ministerial Council. The north German metropolis has a lot to offer – major event or not. Due to its port, which is located right in the heart of the city, Hamburg has had trade relations with much of the world for centuries and may rightly pride itself on being a cosmopolitan and international city.


#OSCEyouth - from participation to more security

In order to counteract the risk of further alienation and a lack of communication between societies in Europe, we need to strengthen transnational exchange between societies and to actively involve civil society. This is why the German Chairmanship will maintain close contact with stakeholders from civil society, especially the youth.

OSZE-Troika mit den Außenministern Österreichs, Deutschlands und Serbiens mit OSZE-Generalsekretär Zannier

OSCE Troika focuses on Ukraine and Nagorno-Karabakh

On Tuesday evening (12 April), Foreign Minister Steinmeier spoke about the challenges and conflicts currently facing the OSCE area at a meeting in Berlin with the Serbian and Austrian Foreign Ministers, Ivica Dačić and Sebastian Kurz, as well as OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier. The discussions focused particularly on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the situation in Ukraine. Germany holds the Chairmanship of the OSCE this year.

OSCE Deutschland 2016

Germany has assumed the Chairmanship of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) for 2016. This means that German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier is the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office (CiO) in 2016. The German Government has appointed Gernot Erler as Special Representative of the Federal Government for the OSCE Chairmanship. The German Chairmanship has defined “Renewing dialogue, rebuilding trust, restoring security” as its key priorities. The Foreign Ministers of the participating States will meet in Hamburg on 8–9 December at this year’s Ministerial Council, which marks the high point of a term of Chairmanship.

Commemorative plaque marking the launch of Hitler’s invasion of the Soviet Union on 22 June 1941

Remembrance. Responsibility. The Future!

Article by Foreign Minister Steinmeier on the 75th anniversary of the launch of Germany's invasion of the Soviet Union

“A challenge we must all tackle together”: international counter‑terrorism conference at the Federal Foreign Office

The international counter‑terrorism conference, Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism and Radicalisation that Lead to Terrorism, is taking place at the Federal Foreign Office on 31 May and 1 June. The conference has been organised under Germany’s OSCE Chairmanship. The focus of the two‑day event is on measures to prevent radicalisation and extremism, but also on how to deal with returning extremists and their reintegration into society.

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watch opening session

Connectivity for Commerce and Investment: OSCE Business Conference to strengthen economic ties across OSCE area

Foreign Minister Steinmeier opened the two‑day OSCE conference Connectivity for Commerce and Investment at the Federal Foreign Office on Wednesday (18 May). The objective of the event was to explore opportunities for improved trade and investment opportunities in order to strengthen business relations in the OSCE area. The conference brought together representatives from the worlds of politics, business and civil society from different regions and economic systems in some 70 countries and was held as part of Germany’s OSCE Chairmanship.

Außenminister Steinmeier mit den Ko-Vorsitzenden der Minsker Gruppe

Steinmeier meets with the Minsk Group to discuss how to resolve the Nagorno‑Karabakh conflict

On 20 April Foreign Minister Frank‑Walter Steinmeier met the co‑chairs of the Minsk Group of the OSCE (Organization for Security and Co‑operation in Europe) and the Personal Representative of the Chairperson‑in‑Office for the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Ambassador Andrzej Kasprzyk. The talks focused on investigating ways to resolve the conflict following the recent escalation of fighting in the region at the beginning of April.

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The flags of the mediators – the OSCE, Russia and Ukraine – and the observers – the EU and the United States

The Transdniestria conflict: Concentrated efforts to restart negotiations

At the invitation of Cord Meier-Klodt, Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, a joint trip took place on 5 and 6 April to help restart the negotiating process. It saw mediators Russia and Ukraine, as well as the United States and the EU as observers, travel to Chisinau for talks with government representatives and to Tiraspol for talks with the leaders of Transdniestria. This was the first joint trip of this kind since 2012. It is part of an ongoing effort to persuade the conflict parties to take small confidence-building steps and return to the negotiating table. The official negotiating process has been on hold for nearly two years.

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Young Leader Conference

The Future of the OSCE

The conference “The Future of the OSCE” was hosted by the German Chairmanship of the OSCE and was an opportunity for young decision-makers from more than 25 OSCE countries to meet in the Federal Foreign Office on 6 and 7 April. They gathered proposals on how to tackle the many different challenges in the OSCE area and how to increase the organisation’s ability to act. “The Future of the OSCE” was the focus of a two‑day conference hosted by the German 2016 OSCE Chairmanship in the Federal Foreign Office on 6 and 7 April in cooperation with the ZEIT‑Stiftung Ebelin und Gerd Bucerius. The almost 60 participants from more than 25 OSCE participating States were welcomed in person by Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

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Steinmeier at OSCE-Academy in Bishkek

Opening Statement of CiO Steinmeier at OSCE-Academy in Bishkek

During his trip to Central Asia Foreign Minister and OSCE Chairperson-in-Office Frank-Walter Steinmeier visited the OSCE-Academy in Bishkek where he gave a speech. Here you can download the speech as a pdf-file.

Minister Steinmeier and Dr. Rachinger

Building a bridge between Vienna and Hamburg

To mark Germany’s Chairmanship of the OSCE in 2016, the Permanent Mission of Germany to the OSCE has sponsored a “book” at the Austrian National Library (ÖNB), the location of the Welcoming Reception for the German OSCE Chairmanship on 14 January.The sponsorship certificate was presented to OSCE Chairperson in Office, Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, on 14 January during his visit to Vienna by Dr Johanna Rachinger, the General Director of the ÖNB

German laws

German law on the OSCE amended

At the beginning of its Chairmanship year Germany has updated and broadened its statutory provisions concerning the privileges and immunities of the OSCE. Under the new rules, OSCE employees and experts who travel to work-related meetings and conferences in Germany shall be granted extensive privileges and immunities.

The Permanent Representative

Ambassador Eberhard Pohl

Ambassador Eberhard Pohl heads the Permanent Mission of Germany to the OSCE. In 2016 he chairs the OSCE Permanent Council in Vienna.

New version of “Facts about Germany” – in 19 languages

Facts about Germany

“Facts about Germany” has everything you need to know about Germany today. How the political system works. The guidelines that define foreign policy. The special characteristics of the economy. What is new in art and culture. The new website features articles, background information, images, charts, films and lots of other modules. Focussing on these and many other topics, besides – in no less than 19 languages. On top of which, all the “Facts” (incl. the new book for young adults in 9 languages) can be downloaded as an e-paper.