Ambassador Lamberto Zannier took up the post of OSCE Secretary General on 1 July 2011. In July 2014, he started his second three-year term.
Zannier joined the Italian Foreign Ministry as a career diplomat in 1978. From June 2008 to June 2011 he was UN Special Representative for Kosovo and Head of the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK). From 2006 to 2008 he was Coordinator for CFSP and ESDP (now CSDP) in the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, dealing inter alia with EU foreign policy issues and with Italy’s participation in EU operations, both civilian and military. From 2002 to 2006, he was the Director of the Conflict Prevention Centre of the OSCE, focused on political-military issues, as well as crisis management, and responsible for managing the OSCE’s field operations. Previous senior positions include Representative of Italy to the Executive Council of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons in The Hague (2000-2002), Chairperson of the negotiations on the adaptation of the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (1998-1999) and Head of Disarmament, Arms Control and Cooperative Security at NATO (1991-1997).
Previously, he served in Rome, Abu Dhabi and Vienna, mainly specializing in multilateral and security affairs. He has authored several publications on security, conflict prevention and crisis management issues.
He has been a member of the Board of Trustees of the OSCE Academy in Bishkek, the Advisory Board of the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) and the EU ISS Board of Directors. He is currently President of the Centre for International Negotiation and Mediation of the University of Gorizia, Italy.
Zannier holds a law degree and an honorary degree in International and Diplomatic Sciences from the University of Trieste, Italy.
Acts as the representative of the Chairperson-in-Office and supports him/her in all activities aimed at fulfilling the goals of the OSCE;
Participates in the meetings of the OSCE Troika which includes the outgoing, current, and incoming Chairmanships;
Supports the process of political dialogue and negotiations among participating States;
Maintains close contacts with all OSCE delegations;
Provides early warning to the Permanent Council, in consultation with the Chairmanship, on any situation of emerging tensions or conflicts in the OSCE area and suggests possible options for timely and effective response after consulting the participating State(s) concerned;
May bring to the attention of the decision-making bodies, in consultation with the Chairmanship, any matter relevant to his/her mandate;
Contributes to and participates in the debates on any of the agenda items of Permanent Council and Forum for Security Co-operation.
Is the Chief Administrative Officer of the OSCE and head of the OSCE Secretariat;
Ensures implementation of the decisions of the OSCE;
Presents the Programme Outline and the Unified Budget Proposal in the Permanent Council;
Oversees the management of OSCE field operations and co-ordinates their operational work;
Ensures programmatic co-ordination between the Secretariat, institutions and field operations, as well as among field operations;
Acts as focal point for co-ordination and consultations among OSCE institutions by inter alia hosting regular co-ordination meetings with the heads of institutions in order to achieve synergy and to avoid duplication of programmes.
Appointed for a term of three years Ministerial Council, which may be extended for a second and final term of three years