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News, 9/5/2006

Montenegro signed the OSCE final act

The Prime Minister of Montenegro Milo Djukanovic signs the final act of the OSCE on the behalf of his countryAs a coda to his visit to Finland Milo Djukanovic, the Prime Minister of the newly-formed independent Montenegro, signed the final act of OSCE from 1975 on Friday 1 September. The Organization for Security and Co-Operation of Europe is the first international organisation that Montenegro has joined. Officially, this was done on 22 June 2006. The signing ceremony at the Finlandia Hall was hosted by the Finnish Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen.

At a press conference following the signing both prime ministers beamed with satisfaction and emphasised the unanimity of their discussions. Djukanovic commended not only the Finnish hospitality but also the active role Finland has taken in the Western Balkans. Finland's policy towards Montenegro was particularly praised. From the start Finland had welcomed Montenegro's EU aspirations, both bilaterally and in the role of the country of EU-presidency.

Prime Minister Vanhanen said that the discussions had been productive. The bilateral talks between Finland and Montenegro concentrated on the initiation of the diplomatic relations and on the potential areas of co-operation. Vanhanen noted that as the country of presidency, Finland will acknowledge Montenegro's membership aspirations and will help create better economic wherewithal for them, all on equal footing with other candidate countries. However, ministers would not speculate with any concrete schedule for this process.

Prime ministers had also discussed the situation in the Western Balkans and especially in Kosovo. Djukanovic said that the EU will continue to have a central role in maintaining security and stability in the region. Answering a question from the press about the development of Kosovo, the ministers were unanimous in their view. The elements for a solution exist and it is unlikely that extra time could improve the situation. The breakthrough could be reached even during this autumn, and Djukanovic pledged all the possible support for Martti Ahtisaari's efforts in the matter.

Montenegro became independent on 3 June 2006.



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Updated 9/5/2006

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