ADC “Memorial” welcomes recommendations by UN CERD to Kyrgyzstan

The UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (UN CERD) published its concluding observations and recommendations to Kyrgyzstan following the consideration of the country’s official state report during the 95th session of the Committee on April 23-24, 2018.

The recommendations reflect important issues pointed out in the report, which had been submitted by the Anti-Discrimination Centre “Memorial” and “Bir-Duino Kyrgyzstan”, as well as in other alternative reports.

Regarding the situation of the human rights defenders and human rights organizations, the Committee called on the Republic of Kyrgyzstan to implement the decision of the Human rights Council (HRC) (2016) and release Azimjan Askarov from detention for humanitarian reasons, as well as to stop the persecution of NGOs, including listing of human rights NGOs and their publications into the register of extremist organizations and materials.

The Committee recommended that the Republic of Kyrgyzstan adopts a comprehensive anti-discrimination legislation in compliance with international standards and urged the Kyrgyzstan government to use support from the office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in preparation of the law.

Important recommendations have been made to improve the situation of all ethnic minorities in Kyrgyzstan, which include improving their access to justice, putting an immediate end to ethnic profiling by the police, increased representation of ethnic minorities in the state bodies, creation of a special program for improving and strengthening interethnic relations on the basis of equality between all ethnic groups in Kyrgyzstan, ensuring participation of ethnic minorities, guaranteeing their right to learn native languages and receive education in native languages, rehabilitation of education in Uzbek language and the opportunity to take secondary school exams in Uzbek.

Much attention was devoted to the situation of the Uzbek minority in Kyrgyzstan with reference to the unresolved consequences of the 2010 conflict. UN CERD called upon the Republic of Kyrgyzstan to conduct effective investigations that would lead to court decisions and fair compensations for the victims in cases of violence and torture, spoliation of property and businesses, layoffs, that had not been brought to justice so far, as well as creating a special mechanism with national and international participation for reviewing decisions concerning people who had been found guilty following the events of 2010.

A significant number of recommendations was devoted to the situation of Mugat people: the Committee urged the Republic of Kyrgyzstan to adopt and implement a support plan for Mugat, focusing on inclusive education for children from this minority, provision of legal documents, housing registration and alternative housing in cases when demolition could not be avoided.

The Committee paid special attention to intersectional and multiple forms of discrimination, when racism was aggravated by discrimination based on gender, sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) or status, indicating that urgent measures were needed to protect LGBT, women and girls belonging to ethnic minorities, and to overcome discrimination against stateless persons.