Munich Security Conference meets in Vienna on Ukraine Crisis [Updated on June 16]
Today and tomorrow, the Munich Security Conference (MSC) meets in Palais Liechtenstein in Vienna as part of its "MSC Core Group Meeting" series to debate critical issues of European security. Key topics will include the Ukraine crisis as well as the future relationship with Russia.
Chaired by Ambassador Wolfgang Ischinger and in cooperation with the Austrian federal government and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), the MSC will assemble around 60 senior leaders in Vienna.
The conflict parties themselves are represented at a high level. Both Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin and Russia’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Alexej Meshkov will attend the Vienna meeting. The host country Austria is represented by Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz, Minister of Defence Gerald Klug as well as the former Federal Chancellor Wolfgang Schüssel. From Eastern and Central Europe, Estonian President Toomas Ilves, the Slovak Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Miroslav Lajčák, the Serbian Foreign Minister and OSCE Chairman-in-Office Ivica Dačić, as well as Jan Hamáček, Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies of the Czech Parliament, have travelled to Vienna. Johannes Hahn, Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, will represent the European Union. Other participants at the Core Group Meeting include the former NATO Secretary General and former EU High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy Javier Solana, Celeste Wallander, Special Assistant to the US President and Senior Director for Russia and Central Asia in the National Security Council, Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International, and George Soros, the Founder and Chairman of the Open Society Foundations, as well as Chief Executive Officer of Linde AG Wolfgang Büchele.
Interim Report on Strengthening the OSCE
The Core Group Meeting will take place immediately before the "Panel of Eminent Persons on European Security as a Common Project", initiated by the OSCE Troika, will gather in a separate meeting in Vienna. The panel, chaired by Ambassador Ischinger and composed of leading personalities from the OSCE area, is tasked to develop suggestions for strengthening the OSCE and for building a more crisis-resistant and resilient system of European security. The Panel’s Interim Report will be presented to the public tomorrow morning.
New Edition of "The Security Times"
When leaders gather in Vienna, they will receive expert support from a special edition of "The Security Times" newspaper that has been an important MSC media partner for many years.
The new edition’s focus is on Russia, Ukraine and the relationship between the two countries and the West. Besides articles by MSC Chairman Wolfgang Ischinger and former ZEIT Editor-in-Chief Theo Sommer, who is now the Executive Editor of "The Security Times", there are contributions by Ostpolitik architect Egon Bahr as well as Eckhard Cordes, Chairman of the German Committee on Eastern European Economic Relations. Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz describes his vision of a new EU Foreign Policy, while OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier analyzes the growing role of his organization in dealing with the Ukraine crisis.
"The Security Times" appears twice a year to accompany the MSC. Opinion leaders in the area of foreign and security policy as well as internationally renowned personalities regularly contribute to the newspaper. Since its first release in 2009, "The Security Times" has become a leading international medium in the strategic security debate and is addressing a worldwide, exclusive readership.
The latest edition of "The Security Times" as well as older issues can be downloaded here.