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OSCE Chairman concerned about events in Tallinn and Moscow

The OSCE Chairman-in-Office, Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos, expressed his concern today over the events that followed the removal of the WWII memorial of the “Bronze Soldier” in Tallinn and protests in front of the Estonian Embassy in Moscow.

“It is deeply disturbing that initially peaceful demonstrations turned into riots and later even a serious crisis between OSCE participating States,” Minister Moratinos said. “I urge all sides to show restraint and to abstain from violence. This crisis must be solved through dialogue and co-operation.”

He also expressed regret that a person was killed during the riots in Tallinn.

“I am convinced that a proper investigation into the circumstances of his death is being conducted,” he added.

The OSCE Chairman said he was following the developments around the Estonian Embassy in Moscow, which has been the focus of protests after the removal of the statue.

“Diplomats and embassies have historically enjoyed a particular protection under international law, and I am sure that all OSCE participating States wish this tradition to continue,” Minister Moratinos said.
MADRID, 3 May 2007

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