The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) is the world's largest security-oriented intergovernmental organization. Its mandate includes issues such as arms control and the promotion of human rights, freedom of the press and fair elections. It employs around 400 people in its secretariat in Vienna, Austria, 200 in its institutions and 2,100 field staff. It has its origins in the 1975 Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe (CSCE) held in Helsinki, Finland.The OSCE is concerned with early warning, conflict prevention, crisis management, and post-conflict rehabilitation. Its 57 participating states are located in Europe, Asia and North America and cover most of the land area of the Northern Hemisphere. It was created during the Cold War era as an East–West forum.
Azerbaijan joined CSCE (from January 1, 1995- OSCE) on January 30, 1992. It should be noted that OSCE was the first European organization participated by Azerbaijan.Beginning from February of 1992 the Armenian-Azeri conflict turned to the object of the more rapt attention of the OSCE members in accordance with the principles of the organization.The first special mission of OSCE was opened in Azerbaijan for the purpose in mid February.The discussions related to the Armenian-Azeri conflict were for the first time conducted at the session of the OSCE Committee for Senior Officials on February 27-28. The document that confirmed the belonging of Nagorny Karabakh to Azerbaijan reflected the appeal for the peaceful settlement of the conflict with alterations in borders.The situation in Nagorny Karabakh was discussed at the first additional meeting of the OSCE Council of Foreign Ministers on March 24, 1992. The session participants decided to convene the OSCE Minsk conference on the peaceful settlement of Armenian-Azeri conflict.
Azerbaijan for the first time took part in the OSCE Summit, held in Helsinki on June 8-10 of 1992 and singed a number of its documents. Azerbaijan joined the Paris Charter of OSCE on December 20, 1993.The Budapest summit of OSCE was conducted on December 5-6 of 1994. As a result of the summit CSCE turned to the European organization OSCE aiming to determine the rules of the coexistence in new Europe, to provide for the peace, democracy and human rights protection and to apply the principles of mutually profitable cooperation and security of the member-states from January 1, 1995.The Budapest Summit for the first time carried out a decision on the establishment of peacekeeping forces to participate in the security measures of Europe and their stationing in the conflict areas. The OSCE member-states reached an agreement to send the first peacekeeping groups to Nagorny Karabakh. Moreover, the co-chair institute was established in frames of the Minsk process in Budapest. As a result of the Budapest summit on the Armenian-Azeri conflict adopted the resolution on the intensification of the activity of OSCE in connection with the Nagorny Karabakh conflict.