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25 July 2020 / International

180+ Orgs Demand Apparel Brands End Complicity in Uyghur Forced Labour

72 Uyghur rights groups are joined by over 100 civil society organisations and labour unions from around the world in calling on apparel brands and retailers to stop using forced labour in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (“Uyghur Region”), known to local people as East Turkistan, and end their complicity in the Chinese government’s human rights abuses.

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CHRONICLE OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC IN UZBEKISTAN: RIOTS, ILL TREATMENT AND SUICIDES IN QUARANTINE FACILITIES AMID APPLAUSE FROM INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS
18 July 2020 / uzbekistan

CHRONICLE OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC IN UZBEKISTAN: RIOTS, ILL TREATMENT AND SUICIDES IN QUARANTINE FACILITIES AMID APPLAUSE FROM INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS

The Special Commission on Combating Covid-19 has strengthened quarantine measures throughout Uzbekistan from July 10 to August 1. The government has restricted traffic, banned events and weddings, closed parks, markets, large shops and gyms, and prohibited people over 65 from going out.

Challenges NGOs in Uzbekistan are still facing
15 July 2020 / uzbekistan

Challenges NGOs in Uzbekistan are still facing

Проблемы, с которыми все еще сталкиваются низовые активисты и самоинициативные НПО в Узбекистане несмотря на сильную политическую волю президента Мирзиёева к усилению роли гражданского общества в процессе демократического развития страны. Отдавая кредит там, где должен быть кредит, в отличие от государственных НПО, снизу-вверх группы пытаются зарегистрироваться, и весь процесс административных процедур направлен на то, чтобы разочаровать и унывать. Помимо бюрократических лент, зарегистрированные НПО задыхаются из-за обременительной отчетности и спроса на предварительное утверждение для повседневной деятельности. Помимо ограниченных местных финансовых ресурсов и слабых организационных возможностей, узбекские НПО ограничены иностранным финансированием. Практические рекомендации, как позволить третьему сектору свободно дышать путем стирания стереотипов, предубеждений и негативного отношения к НПО в Узбекистане.

Free Kanatbek Osmonov!
6 July 2020 / kyrgyzstan

Free Kanatbek Osmonov!

BWI called for the immediate release of Kyrgzstan trade union leader Kanatbek Osmonov, who was charged with criminal cases and placed under house arrest by the government. Osmonov is the Deputy Chairman of the Federation of Trade Unions of Kyrgyzstan (FTUKg) and President of the Kyrgyzstan Forestry Workers Union.

For western brands, Uzbekistan’s cotton privatisation raises red flags
6 July 2020 / uzbekistan

For western brands, Uzbekistan’s cotton privatisation raises red flags

As Uzbekistan turns to privatisation to solve forced labour in the state-controlled cotton sector, an investigation into an international equipment contract raises red flags over business practices and government control.

OUT OF THE CAULDRON, INTO THE FIRE? RISK AND THE PRIVATISATION OF UZBEKISTAN’S COTTON SECTOR
2 July 2020 / uzbekistan

OUT OF THE CAULDRON, INTO THE FIRE? RISK AND THE PRIVATISATION OF UZBEKISTAN’S COTTON SECTOR

Ulster University and the Uzbek Forum for Human Rights has released the first sector wide study on corporate integrity in Uzbekistan. The report and associated policy brief focus on the cotton cluster system, a landmark privatisation initiative designed to improve agro-industrial productivity, and address the structural drivers of systematic forced labour in Uzbekistan. State-organised forced labour regimes in Uzbekistan’s cotton sector have attracted significant domestic and international criticism over the past decade.

UZBEKISTAN: FAIR RECRUITMENT, EFFECTIVE ACCOUNTABILITY NEEDED TO END FORCED LABOR AS INDEPENDENT LABOR MONITORS HARASSED, ARBITRARILY DETAINED
24 June 2020 / uzbekistan

UZBEKISTAN: FAIR RECRUITMENT, EFFECTIVE ACCOUNTABILITY NEEDED TO END FORCED LABOR AS INDEPENDENT LABOR MONITORS HARASSED, ARBITRARILY DETAINED

A new report released today by Uzbek Forum for Human Rights (formerly Uzbek-German Forum / UGF) on the 2019 cotton harvest in Uzbekistan documents both meaningful progress toward ending forced labor and the persistence of government-organized forced labor, said the Cotton Campaign. The report finds that the state-imposed cotton quota, structural labor shortages, the lack of fair and independent recruitment channels, and weak accountability systems contributed to significant ongoing forced labor, including in the newly privatized cotton textile cluster system. Lagging progress on civil society freedoms is also limiting the success of broader reform efforts.