• KGS/USD = 0.01122 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00223 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09145 0.22%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01122 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00223 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09145 0.22%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01122 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00223 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09145 0.22%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01122 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00223 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09145 0.22%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01122 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00223 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09145 0.22%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01122 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00223 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09145 0.22%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01122 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00223 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09145 0.22%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01122 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00223 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09145 0.22%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%

Viewing results 1 - 6 of 3

Bishkek Tightens Grip on NGOs

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan - Kyrgyzstan´s President said on Tuesday that he has approved a law that tightens control over non-governmental organizations which receive foreign funding, despite concerns that the measure could erode basic freedoms and services. President Sadyr Japarov defied international pressure to refrain from signing the law, which was passed by an overwhelming margin in Kyrgyzstan’s Parliament on March 14. In a Facebook post, he said the measure would make NGOs more accountable and increase transparency, an assertion that critics say is misleading. For decades, NGOs “just opened bank accounts, took money from foreign donors and used it as they saw fit, including for personal purposes,” Japarov said. “From now on they will be registered with the Ministry of Justice like everyone else. They will open bank accounts. They will start to work openly. There will be no more confusion.” NGOs “spread false information, saying 'we will be persecuted, we will be arrested as agents of a foreign state'. And the donors believed it,” said Japarov, adding that “there will be no persecution” of the groups. Critics say the law represents a slow-moving crackdown that rolls back efforts to develop civil society with the help of foreign governments and other institutions. “We're deeply disappointed that Kyrgyzstan's president Sadyr Japarov has signed the repressive law on 'foreign representatives,' citing misleading, untrue arguments about NGOs,” said the International Partnership for Human Rights, a Brussels-based group.  “At least get the facts straight,” Syinat Sultanalieva, a Central Asia researcher for Human Rights Watch, said of Japarov’s statement, adding that it was wrong of Japarov to suggest that NGOs “never registered and did not submit reports and basically ran amok unchecked.” In his statement, Japarov bristled at criticism from Western-affiliated institutions and said there was a double standard. “Why do non-governmental organizations in developed Western countries register with the Ministry of Justice, the Tax Service, open a bank account and not do the same when they come to us?” he said. “Or are we a second-class country? No, we are not. We will no longer allow such dubious actions.” Japarov had previously accused NGOs of spreading “inaccurate information,” emphasizing that the draft law “is close to the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) adopted in 1938 in the United States.”. Some opponents claim it is based on Russia´s “foreign agents” law, and could be used as an instrument of oppression.

Kyrgyzstan Tightens Control Over Foreign-Funded NGOs

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan - Kyrgyzstan´s parliament has passed a law that tightens control over foreign funded non-governmental organizations despite international concerns that the measure would further erode rights and access to basic services in the Central Asia country. Supporters of the law have characterized the law as a way to ward off foreign interference in Kyrgyzstan, while critics say it represents a slow-moving crackdown that rolls back efforts to develop civil society with the help of international governments and other institutions. The Jogorku Kenesh, or parliament, approved the law by a vote of 66-5 on Thursday. The government has said the law would assign the status of a foreign agent to NGOs, media and other institutions, as well as individuals in some cases, that are financed from abroad. Furthermore, materials posted on behalf of foreign principals on the Internet will be required to contain the phrase: “Materials (information) were produced, distributed and (or) sent by a non-profit organization performing the functions of a foreign representative.” Violations of the law could lead to criminal penalties. President Sadyr Japarov of Kyrgyzstan has said that “only a small number, but a [quite] vociferous group, of these structures financed by foreign states… is a source of inaccurate information for their grantors”. Last month, Japarov pushed back against concerns about the draft law that were expressed by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in a written response emphasizing that the draft law – which MPs initiated and adopted in its first reading – “is close to the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) adopted in 1938 in the United States”. “My only request is that you do not interfere in the internal affairs of our country,” Japarov said. Some opponents claim it is based on Russia´s “foreign agents” law and could be used as an instrument of oppression. Members of non-governmental groups and other critics strongly opposed the draft law as it moved toward ratification in the parliament. On March, 15 groups wrote to four international finance institutions that are backing projects in Kyrgyzstan and asked them to join their efforts to block it. “The law would inevitably create a climate of fear, preventing people, including workers, human rights defenders and civil society organizations, from speaking out due to fear of reprisals,” the groups said in their letter to the Asian Development Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, European Investment Bank and World Bank. Separately this week, the government in Kyrgyzstan withdrew a draft law on the media that critics said would have restricted free speech. Among the terms of the measure was the right of government agencies to revoke a journalist’s accreditation if it disapproved of the reporter’s coverage of an issue.

Why Are You Allowed and We Are Not? Japarov Responds to U.S. on Foreign Agents Law

The Kyrgyz presidential administration published a letter of response from Sadyr Japarov to U.S. Secretary of State, Antony Blinken. It follows a letter to the Kyrgyz leader in which the top U.S. diplomat expressed concern about the draft law titled "On Non-Profit organizations," which tightens control over their activities in Kyrgyzstan. In his response letter to Blinken, Japarov thanked the American official for his appreciation of the work of the 78th UN General Assembly last September, where the Kyrgyz President urged the international community to support Kyrgyzstan's environmental and green projects. But, he also noted with regret that U.S. authorities are interfering in Kyrgyzstan's internal affairs, emphasizing that the desire for justice and freedom is a distinctive feature of his home nation. "Regarding your concerns about the draft law on foreign agents... there are tens of thousands of non-governmental (NGOs)/non-profit organizations (NPOs) that are successfully working throughout Kyrgyzstan, addressing many problems on which the state previously had neither the will nor the desire to do something. At the same time, it should be recognized that some NGOs/[NPOs] receive funding from abroad, and not only from the U.S. and EU countries," the president wrote. According to Japarov, the Kyrgyz state, by legal definition, intends to control such organizations - namely, where their money comes from and for what purposes it is used. The president emphasized that the draft law - which MPs initiated and adopted in its first reading - is very similar to the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) adopted in 1938 in the United States. According to the president, the analogous American law assigns the status of a foreign agent and controls not only the mass media but also any individuals and legal entities financed from abroad. At the same time, violations of this law or delays in registering an organization in the United States are fraught with not only administrative but also criminal penalties. "In this connection, the question cannot [help] but arise: why are you allowed and we are not allowed?" the Kyrgyz President asked rhetorically. In his letter, Japarov said that in accordance with the Constitution of Kyrgyzstan, human and civil rights and freedoms - including the right to freedom of speech and the right to association - may be restricted by law to protect national security, public order, health and public morals, as well as to protect the rights and freedoms of others. In this right, Kyrgyzstan is no different from other countries. Japarov noted that it seems to him that when Blinken addressed him, he relied on unreliable information from NGOs who had earlier criticized the draft law. Japarov said that this information didn't allow the U.S. foreign policy chief to draw an objective picture of the situation with human rights and freedoms in Kyrgyzstan. "Only a small number, but a [quite] vociferous group, of these structures financed by foreign states... is a source of inaccurate information for their grantors. In addition, these nongovernmental structures often spread false, inaccurate information among the people, which...

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