24.11.2018

Meeting of National Human Rights Institutions of Central Asian countries

A meeting of national human rights institutions of Central Asian countries was held on November 21, 2018 in Tashkent on the eve of the Asian Forum for Human Rights, the purpose of which was to discuss the further development of cooperation between national human rights institutions to address actual issues in the field of human rights.

In 2018, the international community celebrates the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the 25th anniversary of the Vienna Declaration and Plan of Action for Human Rights and the Paris Principles on the status of national human rights institutions. The UN has developed a comprehensive strategy aimed at achieving the support, promotion and protection of human rights for 70 years after the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The basis of this strategy is a set of international norms and standards that currently cover every area of human activity.

A wide network of human rights mechanisms has been established on this strong international legal basis at universal, regional and national levels, designed to further the development of international standards and monitor their implementation, their observance and the investigation of human rights violations. This strategy is supported by a wide range of public information activities and a technical cooperation program, the purpose of which is to provide practical assistance to States in their efforts to support, promote and protect human rights.

The countries of Central Asia established national human rights institutions based on the recommendations of the Vienna Declaration and Program of Action of the Second World Conference of the United Nations on Human Rights in 1993. In particular, in 1995-1996, national human rights institutions were created in Uzbekistan, in 2002 – in Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, 2009 – in Tajikistan, 2017 – in Turkmenistan. In addition, a number of countries have established specialized human rights institutions: Children’s Ombudsman - Kazakhstan and Tajikistan, Business Ombudsman - Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.

Today, national human rights institutions are one of the elements of a multi-level state system that is created to promote and protect human rights. Each of the national institutions for the promotion and observance of human rights is involved in ensuring the implementation of the state’s international obligations in the field of human rights by their inherent means and methods.

The meeting participants noted that the national human rights institutions of Central Asian countries make a great contribution to the implementation of generally accepted international principles and norms in the field of human rights and freedoms, the implementation of national programs on the implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and active participation in universal and regional international organizations.

Following the meeting, it was adopted the Tashkent Statement of the national human rights institutions of the Central Asian countries, providing for the development of inter-institutional cooperation in the field of human rights, including on the improvement of human rights legislation, their participation in the work of human rights structures and mechanisms in the framework of international and regional organizations for the protection of human rights and freedoms.

Participants also noted the importance of cooperation with civil society institutions, educational institutions for the implementation, dissemination and promotion of human rights education, including with the use of modern information and communication technologies.

The adoption of the Tashkent Statement of the National Human Rights Institutions of the Central Asian countries will serve as a solid basis for the further development of cooperation in the protection of human rights.