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Next OSCE chairman to focus on fight against Islamist militancy
December 9, 2016 / 4:29 PM / 9 months ago

Next OSCE chairman to focus on fight against Islamist militancy

Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz (R) and his German counterpart Frank-Walter Steinmeier address media at the 23rd OSCE Ministerial Council organized by Germany's OSCE Chairmanship in Hamburg, Germany December 9, 2016. REUTERS/Fabian Bimmer

HAMBURG (Reuters) - Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz, incoming chairman of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, on Friday said the fight against Islamist militancy would be a centerpiece of his year at the helm.

“We have over 10,000 people in the OSCE countries that have gone to to Iraq and Syria to support Islamic State terrorism...,” Kurz told reporters after a two-day meeting of OSCE ministers. “And when they get back into our societies, they pose a massive security risk for us all.”

Kurz, who will become chairman of the 57-country security and human rights watchdog in January, said it was critical to combat the ideology of the jihadist movement inside Europe, in addition to fighting it in the Middle East.

Reporting by Andrea Shalal and Sabine Siebold; editing by John Stonestreet

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