Menchikov Daniil Yuryevich
Lecturer at the Department of legal English,
International law School, MGIMO-Odintsovo
Odintsovo, Moscow region, Russia
Review of the article entitled
“Enhancing cooperation between the OSCE and the Council of Europe”
(The article is taken from “OSCE Insights 2020” collection: Frank Evers, André Härtel, Marietta König, Enhancing cooperation between the OSCE and the Council of Europe, OSCE Insights 9 (Baden-Baden: Nomos, 2020), at: https://doi.org/10.5771/9783748922339-09)
The article under consideration deals with cooperation between the Organisation of security and cooperation in Europe and the Council of Europe at the present stage. The authors of the article provide readers with the role of each of the mentioned organisation in maintaining stability and enhancing cooperation among European states which are sometimes even hostile to each other. To make the legal framework clearer, at the beginning of the article several legislative acts serving as a legal base, are listed. Moreover, the ways, or better say, formats of bi- and multilateral cooperation are provided. In our opinion, the most important and practical ones are “2+2 format”, involving high-ranked officials, which allows an effective dialogue at the highest level, and cooperation between secretariats, which may seem a bit routine, on the one hand, on the other hand its practical side shouldn’t be underestimated, as it provides a day-to-day dialogue between parties, helping to solve acute questions quickly. Then, a detailed description of these two levels of cooperation is provided, focusing on the functions and duties carried out. However, the OSCE missions in different countries are perceived differently, that impact its global presence. The different perception is due to the fact of biased concepts and opinions regarding the role of the organisation and its strategy. What’s more, the difficulties the organisation is facing are highlighted. First of all, not always is the activity of OSCE welcomed even at the highest level. Some European officials are sometimes reluctant to cooperate duly, because of several contradictions existing. Then some differences in the structures of the Organisation for cooperation and security in Europe and the Council of Europe prevent them from enhancing cooperation effectively. The Council of Europe is more bureaucratic and its deputates play an important role, while the OSCE is rather managed by the ministers participating and the Secretary General. Nevertheless, the authors conclude that cooperation between the two international bodies is sufficiently effective, it opens prospectives to the further rapprochement of the European countries and new areas of collaboration.
In our opinion, the article reveals very well the issue of the enhancement of the European cooperation, as well as shows weak points in that interaction. It could only be suggested to focus more on perception of OSCE missions in different countries, and, when the perception is negative, study the reasons thereof. Moreover, the European Union bodies, especially the European Commission might be involved in the process of ensuring right interaction between the Council of Europe and the OSCE as a mediator.