The human dimension of security includes the following areas:

  • Commitment to develop and promote democratic structures
  • Inclusive and credible elections
  • Freedom of the media
  • Minority rights
  • The rule of law
  • Tolerance and non-discrimination
  • Protection of civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights
  • Gender equality

The human dimension is a core component of the OSCE’s comprehensive approach to security, as the OSCE considers human rights and fundamental freedoms to be an important factor in conflict prevention and peacekeeping, alongside the military component. The OSCE therefore actively promotes respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms as well as democratic institutions, as without them security and stability are not sustainable. Four independent OSCE institutions are of particular importance for the implementation of OSCE commitments in the human dimension.

OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights in Warsaw

OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities in The Hague

OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media in Vienna

Office of the Special Representative and Co-ordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings

Swiss engagement

Switzerland supports the OSCE by developing its own mediation capacities and endeavours to promote the "Women, Peace and Security" agenda within the OSCE. Switzerland also provides financial and material support for the effectiveness of OSCE institutions responsible for upholding human rights and preventing and combating human trafficking, and helps support election observation missions. 

Last update 28.11.2023


Eurasia Division

Council of Europe and OSCE Section

Federal Palace West
3003 Bern


+41 58 464 69 48

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