The Joint Appeal to OSCE Chairmanship from WWG|CSP On the New Risks, Threats and Disasters to the Human Dimension of the OSCE from Afghanistan

Окт 11.2021

Dear Ms Ann Linde Chairwoman of OSCE

Ms Helga Schmid, Secretary General of OSCE

Ms Katya Andrusz, Spokesperson OSCE Office for democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR)

Heads of the OSCE participating States,

We, Members of the Working Group on Women and Gender Realities in the OSCE Region under the Civic Solidarity Platform, are alarmed by the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, where civilians continue to suffer from cruel persecution and disproportionate punishments, where girls, women, national minorities and human rights defenders are at risk.

The OSCE's Helsinki Final Act is a political commitment of the heads of Governments of all 57 signatory States to build security and cooperation in Europe on the basis of its provisions.

Taking into consideration the systemic conflicts and problems related to the Third Basket of the Human Dimension: human rights, democracy, promotion of gender equality and justice for peaceful settlement of all conflicts in the Central Asian countries, we are concerned about the security issues for the citizens of the Central Asian region, in which there are unregulated, unresolved border problems. As you all know, the invasion and armed conflict in the border areas of the Batken region in Kyrgyzstan initiated by Tajikistan claimed the lives of civilians, including children[ii], so far the perpetrators have not been found and punished.

You are also informed of the fact that in recent years the situation with the rights of girls and women has worsened due to the growth of religious fundamentalism in all Central Asian countries. The Taliban's rise to power in Afghanistan has worsened the situation with the rights of girls and women, deprived them of the right to education, participation in public and political life, and holding public positions in Afghanistan. The ongoing processes and changes in Afghanistan are a threat to the security of citizens of the Central Asian region, and can cause a large-scale humanitarian crisis in the OSCE region as well.


The latest news from the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) is sounding the alarm: Over 18 million people rely on humanitarian aid to survive.

Some 664,000 people have been displaced by the latest violence since January, bringing the total number of internally displaced people to more than 3.5 million.



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Feedback from our focus groups



Experience should be attached to a law degree

Shakhboz Latipov, 24 y.o., young lawyer: “When I came to BDK for an internship, I had no experience in legal and human rights activities. Together with experienced senior colleagues, I began to attend trials, studied documents. Gradually my supervisor Khusanbai Saliev began to trust me the preparation of documents, carefully checked them and gave practical advice. Experience comes with time and cases you work on. Every day dozens of people who need help come to us, many of them are from socially vulnerable groups: the poor, large families, elderly citizens. A lawyer in a human rights organization sometimes acts as a psychologist, it is important for him to be able to maintain professionalism and show empathy. At the end of 2019, I successfully passed the exam to get the right to start working as attorney and now I work on cases as an attorney. I turn to my colleagues for help on complex issues, they always give me their advice. This is one of the strengths of the organization: there is support and understanding here.”



Organization unites regions

Feruza Amadalieva, social worker, leader, teacher: “TOT from BDK is a great opportunity to get acquainted with participants from different regions, we continue to communicate on social media and when we meet at events, as close friends, we have such warm relations! At the events, I improved my knowledge, systematized it, clarified how to apply it in practice. I really like the training modules and the way the system of training and practice is built: role-playing games, theory, discussions. Each person expresses himself/herself. I have become a leader for other vulnerable women, I try to help them and engage them in such events.” Feruza Amadalieva is a regular participant of many BDK events, she invites the BDK lawyers to provide legal advice to vulnerable women.



I became confident

In summer of 2019, Nuriza Talantbek kyzy took an active part in conducting regional screenings of documentaries, helped with organizational issues during the campaign dedicated to the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, participated in trips, and did the TOT on women's leadership. She used to be a migrant, worked for an NGO in Osh, and now works in Bishkek in the service industry. She calls her participation in the TOT “an invaluable experience”: “I first attended such an event, and received exactly the information that I needed, for which I am sincerely grateful to the facilitators. I experienced very difficult issues in my life, and thanks to that knowledge, I was able to overcome them, I persevered! After the TOT, I became more confident, began to better understand the essence of human rights, and learned to defend my interests.”



The defendant has passed away. The work on his rehabilitation continues.

The case of Shukurullo Kochkarov shows that work on complex cases continues for many years. After the torture he was subjected to in 2010, he became disabled. We managed to get acquittal on one of the charges; the work is ongoing on achieving his rehabilitation and recognition as a victim of torture in order for compensation to be paid. Trials continue without Shukurullo Kochkarov - he died on 2 August 2019. His interests are represented by his father, Saidaziz Kochkarov, who also has a visual disability. “For many years, we have been supported by the employees of BDK, they have been handling the case of my son, they brought him to court because he couldn’t walk on his own, they constantly help our family: my wife and I underwent rehabilitation, they have helped my son by providing him with medicines, they provide all kinds of help”.



Comprehensive support for victims of torture

Resident of the Kara-Suu district, Dilyor Jumabaev, has extensive experience in dealing with law enforcement agencies. In 2010, he was accused of possessing firearms, and thanks to the work of lawyers, he was acquitted. Two years later, his house was first searched in order to find materials of an extremist nature, but nothing was found. In 2014, he was accused of possessing extremist materials. In court, the prosecutor requested 15 years in prison; the court sentenced him to 6 years. A few years later he was released on parole. “I am grateful to the lawyers of BDK for their expert legal assistance. I participated in a rehabilitation program for victims of torture. When I encounter violations, I recommend contacting this organization.”


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