Based on the results of its 93rd session the United Nations’ Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (UN CERD) made recommendations to Tajikistan, including two important recommendations, on which the country had to report urgently. The first concerned measures aimed at increasing the participation of representatives of ethnic minorities, especially women, in local and higher state authorities, the political and public life; the second concerned the adoption of special strategies/plans and measures to overcome discrimination and improve the situation of the Mugat (Jugi) minority.
Anti-Discrimination Centre “Memorial” welcomes Tajikistan’s timely submission of information to the UN CERD, as well as the fact that in February 2018 a special governmental commission developed and approved the National Action Plan to implement the recommendations of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination for 2018-2020.
At the same time, it is a matter of great concern that some Pamir ethnic groups do not appear in the statistics on the involvement of ethnic minorities in public administration and the public sphere, they are not mentioned in the information on the education system and the inclusion of ethnic minority languages in school curriculum; these groups are also absent from the census data. Meanwhile, for some Pamir languages there exist written language, literature, special teaching materials that can already be used in schools. It is also necessary to support the media, including radio and television broadcasts in the languages of ethnic minorities.
As for Mugat (Jugi) ethnic minority, the statistics presented by the Tajikistan government refer very eloquently to the low involvement of the Jugi children in school education: with an overall assessment of the of Jugi population at more than 13,000, only 1,329 children attend public schools. Other problems of this ethnic minority also require special attention: Jugi people are poorly documented, they face difficulties in registering their housing, their access to medical care and public services is limited.
In this regard, the adoption of a national special strategy to improve the situation of the Jugi seems to be necessary, and we express our hope that the study of this issue envisaged by the National Action Plan will lead not only to the adoption of such a strategy, but also to its financing and implementation, which will bring actual results.
Photos by sanjitbakshi