AM 2004 Rhodes bigMore than 130 parliamentarians from 43 participating States took part in the 2004 OSCE PA Fall Meetings, which were held in Rhodes, Greece, from 29 September to 1 October 2004. The Fall Meetings consisted of the Conference on Trafficking in Human Beings, a meeting of the Standing Committee and the 2nd OSCE PA Parliamentary Forum on the Mediterranean.

The two-day Conference on Trafficking in Human Beings consisted of a series of presentations and discussions focusing on trafficking in human beings as a security challenge, trafficking as a new form of slavery and international strategies in the fight against trafficking.

2004-FM-Rhodes-George-Kammenos-HastingsThe Conference, organized upon the invitation of the Hellenic Parliament, was addressed by prominent officials including Congressman Alcee L. Hastings, President of the OSCE PA, Anna Benaki, Speaker of the Hellenic Parliament and Panos Kammenos, Head of the Hellenic Delegation to the OSCE PA and Vice-President of the OSCE PA. The Conference was also addressed by senior OSCE officials and expert speakers including Helga Konrad, OSCE Special Representative on Combatting Trafficking in Human Beings, Marcin Swiecicki, OSCE Co-ordinator of OSCE Economic and Environmental Activities, and Marjan Wijers, President of the EU Experts Group on Trafficking in Human Beings.

The 2nd Parliamentary Forum on the Mediterranean consisted of a series of presentations and discussions focusing on fighting terrorism in the Mediterranean and economic security, trade and co-operation in the Mediterranean. In conjunction with the Fall Conference in Rhodes, the Assembly's Standing Committee discussed the general activities of the Assembly and followed up on the Assembly's Edinburgh Declaration.

The Standing Committee was briefed by OSCE Secretary General Jan Kubis on the proposed OSCE Budget for 2005. The new PA Working Group on the Budget also met for the first time and agreed to thoroughly review the OSCE Budget proposal and prepare comments for the Permanent Council. Secretary General Spencer Oliver and Treasurer Jerry Grafstein reported on PA activities and indicated that the Assembly will have worked within its annual approved budget for the twelfth consecutive fiscal year.