NEWS AND EVENTS
April 25, 2007
on accreditation of the Head of Human Rights Watch in Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan purposefully pursues policy of social partnership, favoring evolutionary development of civil society institutions. It serves the impulse for development of nongovernmental non profitable organizations (NGO), and the conditions for their participation in the decision-making are provided. NGOs started to play considerable role in the process of democratization and renovation of the society.
For promotion of wide and active participation of nongovernmental non profitable organizations in political and social life of Uzbekistan, country?s Parliament adopted more than 10 laws, regulating activity of civil society institutions, including NGO.
In 1996 Uzbekistan agreed on activity of the well-known organization ?Human Rights Watch? (HRW) in order to enhance the potential of civil society of the Republic, for critical evaluation of formation of legal base for human rights protection and for human rights violations revelation.
Since October 2005, the Head of the Representation has been Andrea Berg, whose activity from the just beginning has been surpassing the frames of the organization?s declared aims and contradicting the legislation of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
From the first day of her stay in Uzbekistan, A.Berg in fact interfering with the domestic affairs of Uzbekistan, has rendered practical assistance to representatives of various unregistered organizations and to so-called independent human rights defenders, initiated activity of destructive forces and encouraged efforts aimed at collection of biased information about different judicial trials, social-political and religious situation in Uzbekistan with its further prejudiced interpretation and stimulated its distribution via Internet and international mass media. All above-mentioned actions constitute gross violation of articles 4 and 30 of the Law of the Republic of Uzbekistan ?On nongovernmental non profitable organizations?.
The Representative of the Organization in Tashkent does not carry out the specified for it goals and tasks in full. During all years of Human Rights Watch activity in Uzbekistan it did not realized any legal, social?economic and cultural development program, as it is provided in the registered by Ministry of Justice ?Provision for Representative of International Nongovernmental Nonprofit Organization ?Human Rights Watch? in the Republic of Uzbekistan?.
In accordance with the Provision, the Representative is obliged to be guided by ?? norms and principles of international law, international covenants, agreements and conventions, legislation of the Republic of Uzbekistan, other normative acts and present Provision?.
However, the Representative staff deliberately use data, received from dubious sources and do not undertake any effort to check the information received, presenting it as the truth in its ultimate authority.
One of the examples of such destructive actions of Human Rights Watch is the article ?Lead rain: Andijan slaughter May 13?, specially prepared by HRW and directed to the distortion of the events that took place in Andijan in May 2005.
Another example is distributed with the reference to HRW allegation of information agency Reuter dated April 22, 2007, that the situation in Uzbekistan in the sphere of human rights protection deteriorated in comparison with the time it affiliated the USSR.
Although, in April 2006 in course of the revision of Human Rights Watch by the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Uzbekistan, the Representative was not able to submit any concrete data or facts that could manifest A.Berg?s allegations that there were facts of human rights gross violations in Uzbekistan.
In her interview to Uznews.net dated April 23, 2007, A.Berg goes even further and openly makes recommendations to European Union not to lift sanctions against Uzbekistan at the EU Foreign Ministers meeting, which is to be held in May 2007.
These and other A.Berg?s similar claims are replicated with the only aim ? to create an artificial obstacle at the way of normalization of relations between Uzbekistan and the EU.
It also worth reminding that collection and publication of unfair and biased information contradicts the requirements of the legislation of the Republic of Uzbekistan, namely the law ?On mass communication media?.
Following the course of its biased strategy towards Uzbekistan, Human Rights Watch knowingly does not notice the efforts of Uzbek government on provision of generally recognized rights and freedoms of its citizens.
From the first days of its Independence Uzbekistan is doing its best to revive spiritual, intellectual and legal values of the people, taking efforts to perform democratic reforms in economic, political and social domains. The Republic has worked out its own way of state reformation, as well as its own model of the transition from the authoritarian formation to the democratic society. Uzbekistan has determined the exact directions of its activity in the field of human rights promotion and protection.
Human rights priority and law superiority in all the fields of social life are proclaimed by the Constitution. Besides, the primacy of the universally recognized principles and norms of international law over local legislation is also proclaimed by the Constitution.
Uzbekistan has acceded to more than 60 international human rights treaties and it fulfills its obligations in good faith.
The Parliament of the Republic adopted more than 300 legal bills of civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, which fully incorporate the universally recognized principles and norms of international law in the human rights field.
Specialization of the courts on criminal, civil and economic cases, institutions of appellation and reconciliation, liberalization of punishments, shortening of the period of the prejudicial inquiry and custody, legal norms preventing the interference of law enforcing agencies in legal proceedings have been introduced in the country.
A complains review system was established to consider any complains on unlawful actions of authorities. This system is based on superiority of law and it includes institutionalized legal tools.
In accordance with the Decree of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan, the death penalty is going to be canceled from January 1, 2008 as a type of punishment and it will be replaced on a life or a long-term imprisonment.
There is also a decision to hand over the right of giving the sanction to take into the custody to the competence of courts. This is going to be an important step in introduction in Uzbekistan the institution of Habeas Corpus.
The institutions of civil society and mass media are extensively involved in the human rights protection system. They supplement the efforts of the Government to encourage and protect human rights in Uzbekistan. Recently more than 5 000 non-government and non-profit organizations (NGO) operate in Uzbekistan.
Activities of NGOs cover all fields of social life such as human rights protection, citizens? self-government, genders equality, etc.
There is a dynamic and result-oriented dialogue between the Government of Uzbekistan and all UN bodies, other international organizations, and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations on issues related to human rights protection.
Against the background of the above-mentioned efforts of the Government, biased allegations of the Human Rights Watch on situation with protection and promotion of human rights in Uzbekistan causes at least perplexity.
Thereupon, on April 21, 2007, the Head of Human Rights Watch Representative in Uzbekistan Andrea Berg was invited to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Uzbekistan, where she was reminded the necessity to follow the legislation of the Republic of Uzbekistan as well as the declared aims and tasks of the organization?s activity in the Republic.
A.Berg was informed on decision to prolong her accreditation temporarily, as well as, that if she continues to violate the legislation of the Republic of Uzbekistan, the issue of her accreditation will be reconsidered.