Response to the Head of the OSCE Programme Office in Bishkek and the Director of the OSCE Academy in Bishkek
As delivered by Ambassador Michael Carpenter
to the Permanent Council, Vienna
May 25, 2023
Ambassador Rogov and Director Satarkulova, welcome to the Permanent Council and thank you for your reports. The United States supports the work of the OSCE Programme Office in Bishkek and the Academy across all three dimensions of security, including in the stated priority areas of promoting democratic governance and economic development, strengthening cross-border security, mitigating climate change, and advancing human rights, rule of law, and gender equality.
Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine continues to threaten stability throughout the entire OSCE region and has dramatically increased the risk in trafficking in human beings across the region. I appreciate the Programme Office’s support to the Kyrgyz Republic in strengthening its capacity to address this issue. We also value your assistance in helping the Kyrgyz Republic establish an Office of the National Rapporteur on Migration and Combating Trafficking in Human Beings, as recommended by ODIHR and the Special Representative and Co-ordinator for CTHB.
We see the Mission’s work to promote the rule of law and human rights as vital. We applaud the Mission’s capacity-building activities in criminal law, including promotion of fair and transparent trials, as well as your work with civil society in conducting trial monitoring. We also commend your support to the Kyrgyz Republic to encourage implementation of the UN recommendations of the Committee against Torture, which can play a crucial role in eradicating torture and cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment.
The effects of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine have had an impact on the economic development of Central Asia as well, leading to high inflation rates and driving up prices of basic necessities such as food and energy. The resulting rise in production costs is especially challenging to local small and medium-sized businesses, the backbone of any functioning economy. In this regard, we support the successful expansion of the Women Economic Empowerment Component program to Issyk-Kul and Jalal-Abad regions.
The transition to a green economy is important for Kyrgyzstan’s development and we support cooperation with the Kyrgyz government to improve its disaster risk reduction system and strengthen environmental security, as discussed with you when you so graciously hosted me in Bishkek.
Director Satarkulova, I would also congratulate you on the launch of the OSCE Academy’s new Bachelor of Arts program in Economics. I commend your plans for further expanding research and doctoral training opportunities, most notably the planned Master of Arts program in Human Rights and Sustainability. In light of the threat to security throughout the OSCE region, the Academy’s focus on training a new generation of leaders to uphold our OSCE commitments in all three dimensions of security is more important than ever. I have to say I was deeply impressed with your work during my visit to the Academy and inspired by the energy and ideals of your students.
Thank you both for your reports and for the work you do to enhance comprehensive security in the region.