The European Platform for Democratic Elections appreciates the latest developments with the United States, the European Union and the Russian President Putin having called on the Belarusian government to accept the offer of OSCE Chief-in-Office Edi Rama and Swedish Minister of Foreign Affairs Ann Linde to mediate the crisis with all stakeholders in the country.
The offer of the OSCE chairmanship’s to facilitate dialogue in Belarus stands for more than a week now - still OSCE member state Belarus has not yet voiced out an invitation for the high-ranking OSCE representatives.
EPDE is concerned about ongoing breach of OSCE commitments and good practice by Belarus. Already during the election process no OSCE/ODIHR election observation mission was deployed to Belarus due to lack of a timely invitation.
At this stage, only a dialogue between all involved parties moderated through a mandated, neutral and inclusive institution as the OSCE can open up a negotiation way out of the crisis and to new elections.
OSCE with participation of its member states - among others in the EU, U.S., Belarus, and the Russian Federation – has an ability to agree on a peaceful solution through negotiation and would be able to guarantee the security of those representatives from civil society and opposition in Belarus who are standing for a peaceful transfer of power in the country.
EPDE particularly appreciates the support of an OSCE negotiation through the Russian Federation. The decision of Mr Lukashenko to accept or not accept OSCE mediation will reveal how serious the call from the Russian side was indeed.