UN Commission Urges “Full Respect” For Rights in Turkmenistan


Watan.ru web site, Moscow
18 Apr 04

The UN Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR) urged the Turkmen government
“to ensure full respect for human rights and basic freedoms,
especially the right to express opinion,” a resolution adopted at the
UNCHR’s 60th annual session in Geneva on Thursday evening (15 April)

The resolution, which was submitted by Western countries, has the
nature of an ultimatum. There was disagreement among members of the
commission during the vote (on the resolution). A total of 25
countries out of 53 voted for the adoption of the resolution, that is
less than half of the commission member states; 11 countries,
including Ukraine, voted against the resolution; 17 countries,
including Russia and Armenia, abstained.

The resolution expresses great alarm over “the restrictions on the
right to the freedom of information”, “the Turkmen government’s
discriminatory behaviour towards ethnic Russians, Uzbeks and other
minorities in the areas of education and employment”, “the retention
of a government policy which is based on the repression of political
activities”. The commission called on the Turkmen government “to
release all political prisoners without delay and any conditions”. It
also decided to continue consideration of the issue of human rights in
Turkmenistan at the 61st session.