Robert A. Bradtke replaces Mathew Bryza as US co-chairman at OSCE Minsk Group

Next OSCE Minsk Group US Co-Chairman Robert A. Bradtke, Photo via RFE/RL
Next OSCE Minsk Group US Co-Chairman Robert A. Bradtke, Photo via RFE/RL

Everyone’s ‘favorite’ OSCE Minsk Group co-chairman Mathew Bryza will probably stop revealing to the media details of Karabakh regulation process, only to come out the next day to say he was misquoted and misunderstood again. Robert A. Bradtke will replace Bryza on that post. The official State Department Statement says:

“The Secretary is pleased to announce the appointment of Ambassador Robert Bradtke as the next U.S. OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chair. Ambassador Bradtke brings to this position more than thirty-six years of Foreign Service experience and extensive expertise in European security policy. In July of this year, he completed a three year assignment as Chief of Mission at American Embassy Zagreb, Croatia. Prior to that, he served from 2001 to 2004 as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, with responsibility for NATO and the OSCE.”

Mathew Bryza was appointed OSCE Minsk group co-chair in June 2005 and replaced Steven Mann on that post.

Journalists will surely miss Bryza… A while ago there was also some speculation, that Bryza would be appointed as US ambassador in Azerbaijan. That would certainly be a welcome appointment, as there are few US diplomats with such a deep knowledge and understanding of the region as Bryza. But those are just speculations…

As to Bradtke, little is known so far, except that we have no idea how to spell his last name in Armenian.  We know, though, that like Tina S. Kaidanow, who replaced Bryza as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs post, Bradtke has extensive experience in the Balkans – the former Yougoslav republics, which successfully broke apart and realized their right for self-determination. That experience will surely be a welcome addition in Karabakh talks, where the two conflicting principles: people’s right for self-determination and state’s right for territorial integrity have brought the talks to a standstill since mid-90’s.

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