Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights

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Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR)
Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights.png
Mlodziejowski Palace in Warsaw.JPG
Młodziejowski Palace in Warsaw, the seat of ODIHR
Office overview
JurisdictionOrganization for Security and Co-operation in Europe
HeadquartersWarsaw, Poland
Office executive
Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights is located in Europe
Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (Europe)

The Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) is the principal institution of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) dealing with the "human dimension" of security. The Office, originally named Office for Free Elections, was created in 1990 by the Charter of Paris and established in 1991. The name of the office was changed in 1992 to reflect the broadened mandate it received at the 1992 Helsinki Summit.

Based in Warsaw, Poland, ODIHR is active throughout the 57 participating States of the OSCE. It assists governments in meeting their commitments as participating States of the OSCE in the areas of elections, human rights, democracy, rule of law, and tolerance and non-discrimination. The Office also hosts the organization's Contact Point for Roma and Sinti Issues.

On 4 December 2020, Matteo Mecacci of Italy, received a nomination for the position of ODIHR's Director.[1]

The office has a staff of some 180.

ODIHR activities[edit]

ODIHR is best known for its role in observing elections. It has observed more than elections across the OSCE region and has deployed some 75,000 observers.

The Office organizes the annual OSCE Human Dimension Implementation Meeting in Warsaw, Europe's largest human rights conference.

ODIHR international electoral observer activities[edit]

ODIHR Directors[edit]

ODIHR Directors
Photo Name and Surname OSCE participating State Mandate
Luchino Cortese Italy Italy 1991–1994
Audrey Glover.png
Dame Audrey Glover United Kingdom United Kingdom 1994–1997
Gérard Stoudmann Switzerland Switzerland 1997–2003
Christian Strohal Austria Austria 2003–2008
Janez Lenarčič
Janez Lenarčič Slovenia Slovenia 2008–2014
Michael Georg Link
Michael Georg Link Germany Germany 2014–2017
Ingibjörg Sólrún Gísladóttir
Ingibjörg Sólrún Gísladóttir Iceland Iceland 2017–2020
Katarzyna Gardapkhadze - Alternate Director Poland Poland 2020
Matteo Mecacci
Matteo Mecacci Italy Italy 2020–present

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Matteo Mecacci appointed Director of OSCE/ODIHR". Retrieved 2022-07-01.
  2. ^ Donovan Slack (November 6, 2012). "International Observers Blocked From Polls". A group of international electoral observers has been blocked from polling places in nine states and has had to take precautions in the face of security threats.

External links[edit]