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October 20 - 26, 2014

Media Monitoring Report for Kyrgyzstan
Posted on October 26, 2014

Contents

Compiled by Jason D’Amour – MIGS Desk Officer for Kyrgyzstan

  1. Politics and Society
  2. Economic Updates
  3. Eurasian Integration

*All articles translated from Russian, unless otherwise indicated*


1. Politics and Society
Kabar News Agency, State-owned media, Article retrieved 20 October, 2014

Respublika and Ata-Jurt unite

  • Respublika and Ata-Jurt parties united, creating a new party called “Respublika AtaJurt,” announced Ata-Jurt party leader, Kamchybek Tashiev. The new party will be chaired by two chairpersons, Omurbek Babanov and Kamchybek Tashiev, and will “address all issues together.”
  • Omurbek Babanov, leader of Respublika, said of the union: “We are united for the country’s future.” 2 ‘24.kg’ News Agency, Private media, Article retrieved 20 October, 2014 Ex-MP Kamchybek Tashiev to insist on the removal from his criminal record
  • Concerning the “marriage” of the parties, an op-ed was published by ’24.kg’ on 22 October («Республика» - «Ата-Журт»: свадьба без любви [“Respublika”-“Ata-Jurt”: a marriage without love]), which attacked the “obvious power-seeking” of Omurbek Babanov, who aims to take as many seats as possible in the upcoming election. 
  • ‘24.kg’ writers Asel Otorbaeva and Daria Podolskaya also raised the issue of Mr. Babanov promising an unfeasible goal of Kyrgyzstan “becoming the second Singapore,” at the party congress. The writers also labelled Mr. Tashiev as suffering from “a long unclaimed inferiority complex.”
  • The writers noted Ata-Jurt’s history of absorbing smaller parties (such as Butun Kyrgyzstan), and suggested that the parties will head to a “speedy divorce.” There will also be issues of running under one ticket in the upcoming 2015 elections, as it may conflict with election rules.
‘24.kg’ News Agency, Private media, Article retrieved 20 October, 2014

Ex-MP Kamchybek Tashiev to insist on the removal from his criminal record

  • Former parliamentarian Kamchybek Tashiev will insist on the removal of his criminal record, according to Kyrgyz law, which allows an appeal to authorities if the conviction “was not fixed after repeated violation of the law.” 
  • Mr. Tashiev was convicted of an attempt to seize power, after the Supreme Court decided to abolish the decision of the Bishkek City Court to acquit Tashiev in 2013.
‘24.kg’ News Agency, Private media, from articles retrieved 22 October, 2014

Roundtable: “How to protect Kyrgyzstan from the Islamic Renaissance?” 

  • An expert Roundtable discussed issues of Islamic extremism in Bishkek on 22 October. The following is a summary of the relevant information: 
  • Retired police Colonel Alexander Zelichenko: “Kyrgyzstan’s prisons have become a breeding ground for extremist organisations.”
  • Dzhumakadyrov Akeneyev: “Kyrgyz citizens join ISIL (sic) because of easy ways to make money.” Mr. Akeneyev asserted that Kyrgyz citizens, particularly inhabitants from the South leave to fight for the Islamic militants because of the inability to earn money in Kyrgyzstan: “[It is] not so much ideological views, as unemployment and lack of opportunities [that] push young people to fight.”
  • Jurist of Islamic law, Kadyr Malikov: “ISIL (sic) is a project implemented to discredit Islam and Sharia norms. [What] we are seeing is a new interpretation of Sharia, and a gross violation of canon law.”
  • General in the GKNB, Tokon Mamytov: “If someone from the village went somewhere to work, study or fight, the entire village knows about it, but not the police and security forces.”
  • Expert on religious security, Ikbol Mirsaitov: “Recruitment for participation in hostilities in the Middle East on the side of radical Islamists is actively underway in social networks.” Mr. Mirsaitov said that this includes the “extremist organisation, Hizb utTahrir.”
  • Kyrgyzstan is often regarded as the “weakest link” in Central Asia for the diffusion of extremism.
Kabar News Agency, State-owned media, Articles retrieved 23 October, 2014

Kyrgyzstan asks UN to help to reduce conflict potential on the border with Uzbekistan and Tajikistan

  • Vice-Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan, Abdyrakhman Mamataliev received Ambassador Miroslav Jenča, Head of the UN Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia (UNRCCA). 
  • Noting the presence of a high conflict potential on the Kyrgyz-Uzbek and Kyrgyz-Tajik state border, including due to the uncertainty of boundaries, Mr. Mamataliev noted the importance of the UN’s comprehensive assistance.
  • Mr. Mamataliev called on the UN to strengthen its support to Kyrgyzstan in the personnel and technical capacities of border and customs services, law enforcement agencies, as well as financial intelligence bodies to effectively combat drug trafficking, terrorism and extremism.
  • Mr. Jenča also met with President Atambaev to discuss regional cooperation, as well as prospects for further cooperation with the Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia.

Irina Karamushkina participated in the conference “Promoting the role of women in combating extremism” in Vienna

  • Deputy Chairman of the Parliament of the Kyrgyz Republic on defense and security, Irina Karamushkina participated in the international conference “Promoting the role of women 4 in combating violent extremism and radicalisation that lead to terrorism” from 21 to 22 October in Vienna. The conference was organized by the Department of transnational threats by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the Global Counter-Terrorism Forum. 
  • Mrs. Karamushkina noted the relevance of the conference for Kyrgyzstan, where the growth of religious extremism is a serious problem. “[The growth] in popularity of radical ideas is pushing law enforcement and national security spending in all areas of the country to prevent recruitment. In particular, we are talking about police reform [and] educational outreach, [especially involving women].”

UN provides students a platform to discuss issues of peacebuilding

  • In high school number 24 in Bishkek, about a hundred students will gather in the auditorium to discuss issues of peace and security, along with members of Parliament, the President's Office of the Kyrgyz Republic, representatives of the Ministry of Education and Science, and representatives of the United Nations. The event was organised in collaboration with the United Nations Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia (UNRCCA), UN-Women, and the UN Resident Coordinator.
  • Students receive skills trainers, and “become agents of change in building peace and equality.” By teaching their peers the basis of achieving equality, students reportedly plan to take real steps to prevent problems in the field, such as: bride kidnapping, domestic violence, early marriage, school racketeering and other vital topics that are relevant for the development of a safe and peaceful school, and their community.
 ‘24.kg’ News Agency, Private media, Article retrieved 24 October, 2014

Johannes Stenbaek Madsen: Problem of violence suppressed in Kyrgyzstan

  • “The problem of violence [against youth] is being suppressed in Kyrgyzstan,” stated the representative of the European Union in Kyrgyzstan, Johannes Stenbaek Madsen.
  • According to Mr. Madsen, the issues of juvenile violence remain out of sight, as “it is inappropriate to talk about it because there are problems of non-interference in other families, problems with the law and welfare problems.” Data from the National Statistics Committee registered 1,334 crimes against children in 2013. “Indicators remain high. [It] should be noted that many parents in the Kyrgyz Republic believe [that] moderate and even severe physical punishment is acceptable. Despite the existence of laws [against it], violence is applied openly at home or at children’s institutions.”
Kabar News Agency, State-owned media, Article retrieved 25 October, 2014

In Batken region, training to promote ethnic equality and civic participation of young people

  • In Batken region, interactive training continues with the creative youth project, “Promotion of ethnic equality and civic participation.” Interactive workshops are aimed at strengthening teamwork and planning of further activities to promote peace and intercultural dialogue among young people, reports local NGO, “Youth of Osh.” 
  • The project is being implemented by youth, aged 16 to 25, in five cities in Kyrgyzstan: Osh, Batken, Tokmok, Jalalabad, and Bishkek, to promote ethnic equality and civic participation in youth.  
2. Economic Updates
Kabar News Agency, State-owned media, Article retrieved 20 October, 2014

Orozbek Duisheev: “The arrest of shares of Kyrgyzaltyn is illegal, as a private company is not responsible for the decisions of the government”

  • At a press conference in Bishkek, President of the Association of Miners and Geology of Kyrgyzstan, Orozbek Duisheev asserted that the recent arrest of 47 million shares of Kyrgyzaltyn by an Ontario court is illegal, as the private company is distinct from the Government. “The situation in Kutessay is too confusing. The government still cannot resolve the issue with the mine, since there is no uniform state policy on the mining industry.” 
  • Mr. Duisheev also asserted that representatives of the Canadian company Centerra Gold Inc. would not come to Kyrgyzstan, “for fear of being arrested.” 
  • Board member of the Association of Miners and Geology, Shergazi Mambetov, added that Kyrgyzstan “cannot take tough decisions on Kumtor because of the incompetence of officials.” Mr. Mambetov contended that: “without decisive action (i.e.: cancelling the 2009 Kumtor agreement), the Kumtor problem will be difficult to solve.”
Kabar News Agency, State-owned media, Article retrieved 22 October, 2014 Tokon Mamytov:

“Kyrgyzstan must take decisive measures to protect the state’s interests in Kumtor project”

  • “Kyrgyzstan must take decisive measures to protect the state’s interests in the Kumtor project,” said Chairman of Kyrgyzaltyn, Tokon Mamytov, after President Atambaev discussed the possibility of withdrawing Kyrgyz shares in Centerra. 
  • “The current cabinet has no relation to the decisions that have been taken by the previous government, and in this regard we have to take decisive action to protect the interests of our state. I agree with President Atambaev: there is a real pressure on us. We just solved one problem and then our shares are under arrest. [It is] clear that some [companies] are trying to manipulate us.”
3. Eurasian Integration
Kabar News Agency, State-owned media, Article retrieved 20 October, 2014

Valentina Matvienko: ‘Russia welcomes the choice of Kyrgyzstan towards Eurasian integration’

  • Chairman of the Federation Council, Valentina Matvienko was in Bishkek, meeting with Kyrgyz officials, said that Russia “welcomes the choice of the political leadership of Kyrgyzstan” to push for Eurasian integration.
  • With the accession agreement for Kyrgyzstan to the Customs Union in January, Kyrgyzstan will have to harmonise with “more than 100 legal acts, including 40 new laws. Russia will help to work towards harmonisation of our national legislation and today Russia also intends to provide Kyrgyzstan legal, advisory assistance.”
  • Mrs. Matvienko stated that Russia “regards Kyrgyzstan as a very close partner,” and pledged that Russia will help to create a special fund, which could consist of US$500 million, and will allocate $200 million to Kyrgyzstan over the next two years, in order to modernise the Kyrgyz economy.
  • Jogorku Kenesh speaker, Asylbek Jeenbekov stated that Kyrgyzstan has demonstrated a “desire to join the Member states [of the Customs Union and the Common Economic Space],” and that it is the “most important priority for Kyrgyzstan.” The accession will allow Kyrgyz citizens to move freely in the member countries, and will provide the Kyrgyz state with “the free movement of goods, capital, and service.”
‘24.kg’ News Agency, Private media, Article retrieved 21 October, 2014

Valentina Matvienko: Status of Russian language to improve with Eurasian Integration

  • “If, from 1 January 2015, Kyrgyzstan becomes a member of the Customs Union and the Eurasian Economic Union, the status of the Russian language will increase,” said Mrs. Matvienko after meeting with Kyrgyz President, Almazbek Atambaev. 
  • “Studies are held in Russian in 52 Kyrgyz universities, [with] more than 50,000 students. The Kyrgyz-Russian Slavic University plays a huge role in this respect, and not only prepares highly qualified professionals, but also does a lot to improve skills of teachers. [Russia is] trying to equip [Russian-language programs with] textbooks, teaching materials and other literature.”
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