Report by the Project Coordinator in Ukraine
As delivered by Chargé d’Affaires Elisabeth Rosenstock-Siller
to the Permanent Council, Vienna
October 28, 2021
Thank you, Madam Chair.
Ambassador Villadsen, the United States welcomes you back to the Permanent Council. We appreciate your insightful briefing on your work as the Project Coordinator in Ukraine (PCU) and welcome the extension of the PCU’s mandate. We applaud your ongoing Gender Strategy to promote gender mainstreaming throughout your Mission’s programs, which, according to your report, is quite successful.
The United States recognizes you and your team’s continuing efforts to work in conjunction with the Ukrainian government and civil society on wide-ranging democratic, judicial, economic, and social reforms. The United States underscores that progress in the fight against corruption and other key reforms remains essential to Ukraine’s prosperity, security, and democracy.
Ukraine has made and will continue to make important steps in the right direction. And we are very proud of the progress it is making. The United States has no doubt that you and your mission provide strong support for that long-term endeavor.
We recognize the most recent reporting period likely represented one of the most – if not the most – challenging periods for the PCU.
The PCU’s initiatives, coupled with the strategic manner in which you have approached fulfilling your mandate against the backdrop of the pandemic, are impressive. You successfully prioritized the safety of your staff while maintaining continued efficacy of the PCU’s projects. This demonstrates that you and your team are committed to improving the lives of the people of Ukraine.
Ambassador Villadsen, you also faced these most recent challenges in the face of the Russia-led conflict in eastern Ukraine and Russia’s occupation of Crimea, which are blatant violations of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and undermine security in the broader OSCE region. We applaud your work to provide conflict- affected communities with resources to address psychological trauma, specifically the trauma faced by veterans and their families.
You helped raise awareness of the impact of the conflict across a broad spectrum of Ukraine’s society and assisted veterans to reintegrate into civilian life, providing them and their families with appropriate support mechanisms. You deserve a great deal of credit from the OSCE Permanent Council for these efforts.
We welcome your focus on chemical safety and security, helping Ukrainian authorities develop a draft law that revised technical regulations on the classification and management of chemicals. Through that and other steps, including analysis of potential threats relating to manufacturing and mining waste in the Donbas, your mission is working to reduce the risks to local communities from chemicals and industrial waste, an ongoing issue.
Ambassador Villadsen, your broad mandate has provided you with opportunities to support many key reforms, from ensuring democratic civilian control of the armed forces to countering illicit trafficking in small arms and light weapons, working with elections officials to upgrade e-voting systems, and strengthening the rule of law and anti-corruption efforts. The United States appreciates your and your team’s engagement across the political, judicial, economic, and social spectra. We stand with the people of Ukraine as they build a prosperous, and European future.
We reiterate that the mandate of the Project Coordinator in Ukraine applies to the entirety of Ukraine within its internationally recognized borders, including Crimea and Russia-controlled parts of eastern Ukraine.
Thank you again, Ambassador Villadsen, for your service to the OSCE and for your service to the people of Ukraine.
Thank you, Madam Chair.