There are two schools of thought on how to establish a security mechanism in northeast Asia. One believes it should be modeled on established regional security mechanisms like the Helsinki Process and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). The other would like to see a dynamic and sustainable system adapted to the needs of local development. But the differing ideologies and interests of the four major players (China, Russia, Japan and the United States), and North and South Korea, mean there are widely differing expectations of any security mechanism.
This author believes that any regional multi-lateral organization should first establish a set of principles or rules that are accepted and honored by all its members. The principles should include decision-making procedures, goals, and measures to achieve those goals. We should not simply copy the European model, because the political and economic environment is not the same. But we can learn some lessons from the OSCE.
The OSCE has 10 institutions: 1. Summit Conferences; 2. The Ministerial Council; 3. The Parliamentary Assembly; 4. The Senior Council/Economic Forum (consists of senior representatives from member states and holds annual conferences to discuss economic and environmental issues that impact on security ); 5. The Permanent Council (consists of permanent representatives of member states and convenes weekly to manage day to day matters and make decisions on any issue concerns the OSCE); 6. The Forum for Security Cooperation—FSC (consists of delegations from member states and meets weekly to discuss and make decisions regarding military aspects of security in the OSCE area, including confidence-building and security-enhancing measures); 7. A Secretariat that provides operational support to the Organization; 8. The Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights—ODIHR (active throughout the OSCE area on matters like election observation, democratic development, human rights, tolerance and non-discrimination, and the rule of law); 9. High Commissioner on National Minorities that identifies and seeks early resolution of ethnic tensions that might endanger peace, stability or friendly relations between OSCE participating States; and 10. Conflict prevention and crisis management teams, established on request from member states.