The OSCE-UN International Conference on Improving Security and Stability in Central Asia and Strengthening Comprehensive Efforts to Counter Terrorism is coming to a close in the Kyrgyz capital of Bishkek on Friday. A declaration to foster cooperation of the countries of the world in the fight against international terrorism and other forms of organised crime is going to be signed at the conference. The Kyrgyz Foreign Ministry told RIA Novosti that the main topic on the conference's agenda is "forms and methods" of pre-empting terrorist attacks. The participants in the conference are exchanging "experience and successful tactics in the area." They also touch upon "blocking financial provision of terrorist groups and organisations." According to the statement released by the OSCE Centre in Kyrgyzstan, "the Bishkek conference will become the first step towards the implementation of the Bucharest action plan," which was worked out at the meeting of OSCE member-states' foreign ministers in the Romanian capital in early December 2001. The Kyrgyz president's press service said that a meeting of Kyrgyz leader Askar Akayev with Acting Chairman of the OSCE and Romanian Foreign Minister Mircea Geoana is scheduled for December 14. Mr. Geoana is to arrive on Friday. Mr. Akayev will also meet representatives of the NATO Secretary General, as well as UN Deputy Secretary General Pino Arlacchi. The Bishkek conference began on December 13. Delegations from 50 countries, including Russia, the United States, China, Great Britain, and Germany, came to the Kyrgyz capital. Twenty-one international organisations, such as NATO, the IMF, the Interpole, and so forth, are represented at the forum.
The remarks from the Pope came as "a very strong step towards degradation," "given the rather massive nature of homosexuality" among the Catholic clergy.