Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 20th October 2005.

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Photo of Mike Hancock Mike Hancock Liberal Democrat, Portsmouth South

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent representations he has made to the Government of Uzbekistan concerning human rights abuses, with particular regard to the arrest of Mutubar Tadzhibaeva; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Douglas Alexander Douglas Alexander Minister of State (Europe)

We remain deeply concerned by the reports of ongoing human rights abuses in Uzbekistan, including the mistreatment of human rights defenders and others, and take every opportunity to raise this issue with the Uzbek Government.

We made our most recent representation on 14 October. In a diplomatic note, passed by our Embassy in Tashkent to the Uzbek Ministry of Foreign Affairs, we expressed our alarm at the reported treatment of three human rights defenders. One of these was the recently arrested Mukhtabar Tojibaeva; we have requested clarification of the charges brought against her. The Other two were Elena Urlaeva and Shavkat Madumarov. We have asked the Uzbek Government to confirm that all three are being treated in a manner compliant with international standards.

We will continue, both bilaterally and through international institutions such as the EU and The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe, to encourage Uzbekistan to take greater steps towards full respect for human rights, and stand ready to provide any necessary assistance.

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