BISHKEK, 2 May. A delegation of five Ambassadors to the OSCE finished a three-day visit to Kyrgyzstan today, their first stop on a tour of three Central Asian states.
The Heads of the permanent delegations of Bulgaria, France, Ireland, Norway and Sweden to the OSCE attended a press forum with the participation of editors of leading Kyrgyz media outlets in Bishkek today. During the meeting, the issues of religious extremism, electronic media and freedom of press in Kyrgyzstan were discussed. Aleksandr Kim, editor-in-chief of the independent "Moia Stolitsa" newspaper criticized authorities, as he put it, for persecution of the paper by means of ongoing and endless court processes against it. Rustam Koshmuratov, the head of the independent "Almaz" Radio, told guests that a new attempt to organize a tender for the radio waves is a kind of obstacling to independent Radios in Kyrgyzstan.
After visiting the southern province of Osh and meeting the Governor Naken Kasiev yesterday, the delegation earlier today met representatives of local NGOs and human rights organizations in Bishkek.
The visiting delegation met the Kyrgyz President Askar Akaev, the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly, Abdygany Erkebaev, and other officials on Wednesday, 30 April. Their talks focused on current issues of co-operation between the OSCE and Kyrgyzstan, such as in the fields of policing, the OSCE Academy, the newly established office of Ombudsman, reform of the prison system as well as the problem of radioactive waste dumps in the region of Maili-Suu. The five ambassadors were also informed on the Constitutional and legal reform process in Kyrgyzstan by the President and other interlocutors such as opposition leaders.
The OSCE ambassadors also had talks with the leaders of opposition parties. Deputy of the Legislative Assembly of the Parliament, Adakhan Madumarov, pointed out that the OSCE institutions and the OSCE Centre in Bishkek undertake important activities supporting democracy and reforms in Kyrgyzstan. They visited the Kyrgyz Ombudsman, Tursunbai Bakir-Uulu, as well.
The ambassadors, namely, Ivo Petrov (Bulgaria), Ivo Dutrio (France), Brandon L.Moran (Ireland), Mette Kongihem (Norway), and Cyster Bringeus (Sweden), will leave Bishkek tomorrow for Kazakhstan and Tajikistan. Compiled and translated by Tyntchtykbek Tchoroev in Prague