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US-Kazakhstan Dialogue on Human Rights and Democratic Reforms


Astana, 21 May 2024 (TDI): The United States and the Republic of Kazakhstan convened the third annual United States-Kazakhstan High-Level Dialogue on Human Rights and Democratic Reforms on May 20 in Astana, Kazakhstan to mark the shared commitment to advancing Human Rights.

The US delegation was led by the Under Secretary of State for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights Uzra Zeya.  The Kazakh delegation was led by Ambassador Erzhan Kazykhan, Assistant to the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan for External Affairs.

During the dialogue, both delegations reaffirmed their dedication to promoting human rights and democratic principles.

Key topics of discussion included the rule of law, freedom of expression (particularly for media professionals), freedom of religion or belief, protection of vulnerable populations, disability rights, and multilateral cooperation, including partnerships with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and the C5+1 Platform.

Recognizing that the protection of human rights is fundamental to a thriving democracy, both nations emphasized the importance of safeguarding freedoms of expression and peaceful assembly, as well as fostering an environment conducive to independent media.

The United States commended Kazakhstan for its progress in advancing human rights, notably through the passage of the April 2024 law recriminalizing domestic violence—an essential step toward protecting survivors.

Moreover, the United States reaffirmed its strong support for the full implementation of President Tokayev’s reform agenda.

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Additionally, the United States also commended the Republic of Kazakhstan for progress in the advancement of human rights including the passage of the April 2024 law recriminalizing domestic violence, a very important step in protecting survivors.

US Delegation encouraged Kazakhstan to further its reform efforts in collaboration with civil society partners for increased transparency and accountability.

In emphasizing the integral role of human rights and fundamental freedoms in shaping a prosperous future, both nations envision a “New Kazakhstan” where independent media, civil society groups, and political parties can operate freely, without undue restrictions.

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