Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov thinks it necessary to join efforts to overcome the functional and geographical disbalance inside the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe and restore its natural role as a forum of political consultations and decisions on key issues of European security. It is perfectly possible to cope with this task now that the OSCE is constantly enriched with new ideas and proposals to step up its military, political and economic activity, Ivanov told the 9th meeting of the Council of OSCE Foreign Ministers. In his opinion, realization of these ideas will help enhance the potential of the OSCE, especially that related to anti-crisis activity. "We have to deal with it right now," stressed the Russian minister. According to Ivanov, the same goes for the humanitarian line of the organisation's activity, which could be further developed with the help of the Bureau of democratic institutes and human rights and its presence in regions where the human rights situation and democratic processes need improvement. Moscow is also convinced that the crisis inside the OSCE can be settled through improvement of administrative procedures, management and the budget process. Besides, according to Ivanov, it is necessary to keep the OSCE political agenda up to the present-day situation and saturate it with topical all-European problems dealing with security and cooperation in accordance with the life and interests of OSCE member states. The OSCE should not lag behind other international structures that are currently re-establishing their priorities, pointed out Ivanov.
Forest fires in Siberia have been raging for three months already. They have become a disaster not only of Russian, but of global scale. The fires have already scorched 12 million hectares of land