Central Asian OSCE PA delegations discuss regional co-operation in fighting COVID-19

COPENHAGEN, 9 June 2020 – In the second of a series of informal meetings to focus on regional aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic, parliamentarians from Central Asian countries met online Tuesday with OSCE Parliamentary Assembly President George Tsereteli (Georgia) and Secretary General Roberto Montella. The OSCE parliamentarians were joined by the representatives of OSCE field operations in Central Asia, as well as regional experts from the OSCE Conflict Prevention Center, OSCE Secretariat, OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, and the OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities.

GT photoGeorge TsereteliOSCE PA Heads of Delegation and Deputy Heads of Delegation from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan spoke about recent developments in their countries, including the authorities’ responses to COVID-19 in the field of health care and economic aid measures. Also in focus were legislative reform efforts, elections, regional co-operation, parliamentary dialogue, and Central Asian engagement in OSCE PA activities.

The PA President and Secretary General underlined the importance of regional connectivity, co-operation, timely exchange of information and dialogue among the parliamentarians in order to promote beneficial outcomes for the people of the region.

President Tsereteli noted that all countries are faced with unprecedented challenges during this period, and that while the focus is on measures in the field of health care, there have also been serious consequences in the economic sphere. At the same time, attention must continue to be paid to the issue of democratic development and fundamental rights and freedoms, he said. The President also expressed hope that this discussion would provide an opportunity to exchange experiences and examples of ‘good practice,’ as well as to identify what the main issues will be in the post-COVID phase.

In his remarks, Secretary General Montella said that the purpose of the meeting was to touch base with OSCE PA Heads of Delegations in an informal manner to stimulate fruitful discussions on regional issues. He stressed that for the OSCE PA to reach its potential, it is important to involve all national delegations on an equal basis. Montella highlighted the OSCE PA’s work with other international organizations, noting the importance of strengthening the bodies of multilateral co-operation. He also briefed the delegations on the PA's recent online discussions and upcoming activities.

Rada TumanbaevaRada TumanbaevaIn the discussion, the OSCE PA delegations provided updates on the public health situations and other developments in the region. Parliamentarians highlighted measures taken in their countries to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and legislative initiatives taken in response to the pandemic, as well as ongoing legislative reform in the areas of parliamentarism, democratization, health care, and fundamental rights and freedoms.

They also discussed the impact on the economy and society, emphasizing the need to address jointly with neighboring countries the areas affected by COVID-19, for example through trade and technical collaboration in the medical sector. Regional co-operation and the importance of mutual support was highlighted by several delegations.

Appreciation was also expressed for the OSCE PA as an effective platform for dialogue and inter-parliamentary relations in which critical issues and joint responses to common challenges can be discussed.

For more on the OSCE PA’s response to the COVID-19 crisis, please click here.



Nat Parry

Head of Communications and Press

Office: +45 33 37 80 55
Mobile: +45 60 10 81 77
Email: [email protected]

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