OSCE Human Dimension Implementation Meeting Working Session 5 – Right of Reply

As prepared for delivery by Susan Ball
OSCE Human Dimension Implementation Meeting
Warsaw, September 26, 2012

Thank you Madam Moderator.  I would also like to thank all those participating States and NGOs who have offered comments on U.S. policy and practices regarding these issues.  While we disagree with certain presenters on matters of substance, it is our belief that the OSCE HDIM sessions provide a valuable forum for the exchange of views on human dimension commitments, no matter how controversial.

The HDIM has particular importance as an international event allowing for direct dialogue between governments and representatives of civil society.  This role is particularly important as it applies to OSCE participating States in which civil society organizations are routinely restricted by their own governments from exercising free speech and other fundamental freedoms.  For this reason, the United States shall continue to protect the ability of civil society organizations to exercise the freedom to express themselves at this unique annual event.  Thank you.