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Activists’ SOGI Pose Risks for Their Safety

 30-10-2022, 23:16

Activists’ SOGI Pose Risks for Their SafetyIdentity disclosure, blackmailing, persecutions, violation of privacy right, and forced emigration accompany the actions of activists, who are in the high-risk area due to their human rights activities.

An LGBTQ+ activist (no name is given for security reasons) working in an NGO as a foreign specialist was blackmailed in Bishkek by people who identified themselves as police officers.

They showed him a screenshot of a private video, where he was captured with another man.

‘Police officers’ demanded that the activist should cooperate with them and deliver information on his colleagues upon their request. In case of denial, he was threatened with spreading this video among his acquaintances, relatives and across the country.

In fear of persecutions, the victim of blackmail left Kyrgyzstan. But when some months later he tried to get back, he failed. He was shown a document confirming he was denied entry at the border point. The document was endorsed by GKNB (State Committee for National Security of the Kyrgyz Republic). The reason for denial was not specified.

In addition to blackmail and pressure, the victim was restricted in his freedom of movement.

Despite the fact that article 29 of the Constitution of the Kyrgyz Republic ensures everyone "right to privacy”, this right of the activist was breached. Moreover, it was breached based on his sexual orientation, citizenship and human rights activity.

Another case of disclosure of SOGI (note: sexual orientation and gender identity) and private life details was published in a video about "KyrgyzIndigo”, an LGBT organization of the Kyrgyz Republic.

The video contained information and personal data of employees, their addresses and photos.

"After this information was disclosed, some employees of the NGO were spied on by unknown persons,” wrote activistsin their report "Violence and discrimination against LGBTQ+ people in the Kyrgyz Republic”[1].

Previously, Kyrgyzstan-based human rights activists had also reported cases when personal data were publicly disclosed and posed a risk for life.

Activists cite another case when during the 2020 parliamentary election in Kyrgyzstan an intimate video of two men filmed on a hidden camera was posted on the internet.

The video disclosed their names, sexual orientation, places of study and work. Victims of discrimination reported that the provocative video was published after they were blackmailed by people who identified themselves as "police officers.” According to the victims, they were demanded to disclose information about LGBTQ+ activists and human rights defenders.

"In recent years, there have been increasing incidents when LGBTQ+ activists are used for political purposes and their private life becomes public,” said Nadira Masyumova, representative of the Coalition for Equality of Kyrgyzstan. "But the state does not respond to these cases.” Analyzing these cases, Masyumova emphasized that there "are serious concerns about complicity of public servants in such cases.”

Another visible part of the LGBTQ+ community is trans* people who often become targets of media. A transgender is a man or woman, whose gender identity is different from the sex they were assigned at birth. For example, a person was assigned female at birth, and was brought up and educated as a female, but feels oneself as a male and wants to live and socialize as a male.

Several cases were documented when trans*people in bars, on the streets were filmed and their personal data were disclosed. And such cases were usually followed by physical assaults outdoors.

According to activists, only one case can be an inspiring example for LGBTQ+ people.

A trans*woman has managed to win the honour and dignity case in court against the media outlet that spread hate against her and revealed her personal information. The court awarded compensation to her in the amount of 10,000 Kyrgyz soms (115 USD dollars). However, she had to leave Kyrgyzstan for safety reasons.

This article was prepared under the project "Promoting media freedom and diversity through reporting on violation of rights and training of media workers in creating sensitive media reports on minority and marginalized groups” with the support of the Canada Fund for Local Initiative (CFLI).

[1] The shadow report was written by this NGO for the 136th session of the UN Human Rights Committee, 2022.

Inaccessibility of Inclusive Education

 18-10-2022, 21:46


Inaccessibility of Inclusive EducationAttempts to introduce inclusion into schools have faced risks from bureaucracy to violation of rights and lack of safe psychological environment.

13-year-old Nazira (not her real name) uses hearing aid that help her to better understand the world around. In early childhood, the girl had a hearing implant surgery to compensate her hearing loss.

From grade one, she studied in the special boarding school for hearing impaired children of Bishkek as she was not admitted to regular schools because of her disability. Five years later, Nazira’s mother decided to improve her development.

"I needed to place my daughter into a speaking environment,” mother said. "There [in the special school], they taught her only finger spelling [a special form of communication that used fingers – note] and sign language as there was no speaking environment.”

Nazira’s parents found a boarding school in Bishkek not far from their house. This was a secondary school of general education for orphans and children left without parental care. She was taken there for a probationary period of three months and was put into grade four for better adaptation, although she studied in grade six by that time.

Nazira’s mother was in constant contact with teachers, was interested in her daughter’s integration into the new environment, her successes in school. The teachers answered positively to all her questions.

But one case changed everything: once Nazira dodged lessons and did not return to school for a while. She was searched by parents, teachers, police. When she came home late at night, the psychological condition of the teenager was critical.

According to Nazira, her classmates laughed at her because of her hearing issues and discussed her hearing aid and disability loudly. Girl was shocked by it and could not stay in school anymore.

After the parents asked the administration to explain the incident, they learned that there was decided to suspend the girl for missing lessons. Moreover, the teachers advised taking Nazira to the special boarding school, where she had studied before.

The three laws of Kyrgyzstan ensure access to inclusive education for children with disabilities: "On education and science”, "On preschool education”, and "On rights and guarantees of persons with disabilities”. Inclusion means a form of study when all children study together regardless of their development peculiarities, level of their abilities, and diagnoses.

According to the National Statistical Committee as of March 2021, there are over 32 thousand children with disabilities under 18 in Kyrgyzstan or 1.3 per cent of total number of children of this age group. And only 10 per cent of these 32 thousand children study in special schools.

In 2019, Kyrgyzstan also ratified the International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the Inclusive Education Development Programme for 2019 to 2023.

However, the specialist point at a range of problems hindering inclusion in schools.

"Many funds together with the Ministry of Education and Science of the Kyrgyz Republic developed standards, methods, individual plans and even pilot projects,” said Almaz Tazhybai, director of the Centre for State Policy Analysis, which studies the enforcement of laws in educational sphere. "But [the Programme] is not yet introduced because of bureaucracy, lack of political will and allegedly because there is no money in the budget.”

Tazhybai cited other cases of violation of children’s and their parents’ rights to inclusion as an example. "Special boards established in every district send children with disabilities to special boarding schools that enrol [children] with references from the ministry of health,” he said.

Many parents want their children to study in schools with others and to have an opportunity to choose a facility of their own choice.

Another problem is the lack of psychologically safe environment in schools of general education. The case with Nazira confirms it. In school, where she tried to study, there was no special child psychologist who can work with disabled children, and teachers failed to integrate Nazira into common school environment.

Bullying by classmates and stigma have almost pushed the hearing-impaired girl to suicide.

"After that case, my daughter wanted to jump down the balcony, I could hardly talk her out of this,” Nazira’s mother said crying.

This article was prepared under the "Promoting media freedom and diversity through reporting on violation of rights and training of media workers in creating sensitive media reports on minority and marginalized groups project” with the financial support of the Canada Fund for Local Initiative (CFLI).



 14-10-2022, 22:05

STOP ATTACKS AGAINST INDEPENDENT MEDIA!Opponents of Kyrgyz independent media must stop speaking because local audience prefer objective and diverse information, while media outlets serve public interests.

It’s due to independent media and journalists that Kyrgyzstan is still on best positions in international rankings[1], leaving all Central Asian states and many other states in the ex-Soviet area behind.

Attempts made by some groups who organised the protest in Bishkek demanding to close independent media outlets are against the constitution.  

They breach article 10 of the Constitution of the Kyrgyz Republic, in particular regarding the statement that "media outlets are free and carry out their operations according to the law.”

The protest was held on October 13, 2022 in front of the Radio Azattyk office in Bishkek[2].

Moreover, the protest was organised amid consideration of the regular report by Kyrgyzstan on observation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights submitted to the UN Human Rights Committee, which takes place this day.

An underhand initiative of deputies on countering independent media outlets and their demands of their closure are nothing else but attempts to escalate the situation in society.

Parliamentarian Dastan Bekeshev confirmed the fact of collection of signatures for closure of independent media outlets in his Telegram channel.

The School of Peacemaking and Media Technology in CA expresses its utmost concern about the fact that such actions intend to distract people’s attention from the current socio-political agenda and serious issues in Kyrgyzstan.

Use of the long-time leverage against independent media, setting them against society can have negative consequences.

We urge legislators, the government and organisers of similar actions to stop manipulating by independent media and to immediately respond to the threats voiced against media groups.

Attacks on the media and media workers increase every year in Kyrgyzstan.

According to the annual report of the School of Peacemaking and Media Technology in CA and the Justice for Journalists Foundation, the number of incidents against media has increased almost three times in the last five years in the country.





 10-10-2022, 22:54

A working meeting with experts of human rights organizations was held today on monitoring, documentation and case analysis of discrimination and violations of minorities’ and marginalized groups’ rights in Kyrgyzstan.

Methodology, markers and special forms of incident documentation were developed as part of the "Promoting media freedom and diversity through reporting on violation of rights and training of media workers in creating sensitive media reports on minority and marginalized groups”  with the support of the Canada Fund for Local Initiative (CFLI).


Experts and partners involved in the project were familiarized with innovative methods of information completion and special monitoring techniques. They were trained in methods of detailed case analysis based on international standards.

These cases will be processed by the analytical team and journalists to create stories and publish them on their websites. Over twenty cases are planned for documentation as part of the project.

Use Peace Journalism Do Not Focus On War

 24-09-2022, 00:41

Use Peace Journalism Do Not Focus On WarThe media of Central Asia, who informed about last week’s armed clashes and cross-border violence between Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan must use peace journalism tools, according to the message of the School of Peacemaking and Media Technology in Central Asia.


Analysis of the media space showed that the armed clashes narratives dominated in daily news.

The audience received information on battles, victims, violence and military actions.

However, the media content was more war-oriented.

The media outlets published no materials focused on decisions offering and analysing various options of peaceful initiatives.

The School of Peacemaking encourages journalists and content creators to use peace journalism approaches. This approach helps editors and reporters to choose what and how to report on the events to consider non-violent response to the conflict.


 23-09-2022, 15:15
CALL FOR APPLICATION TO HUMAN RIGHTS MEDIA REPORTING TRAININGThe School of Peacemaking and Media Technology in Central Asia is announcing the call for participation in the "Reporting on minority and marginalised groups issues’ workshop” to be held in late October thru early November 2022 in Bishkek.

The working languages of the event are Russian, Kyrgyz.

Journalists and editors from Kyrgyzstan are invited to participate in the training. All costs will be covered by organisers.

To take part in the call, you have to submit a filled application form, a CV of a potential participant, a scanned copy of a passport, as well as a motivation letter for participation to the e-mail marked as "For training”.

The main criteria of selection will be their current activities in the sphere, understanding of importance of human rights and promotion of minority and vulnerable group issues in the media.

The deadline for applications is 5.00 pm Bishkek time, October 5, 2022.

Applications submitted after the deadline will not be considered. The team does not comment its selection methods and does not reply to requests after the competition is over.

The event will be held under the Peacemaking School’s programme on the promotion of media freedom and diversity, supported by the Canada Fund for Local Initiatives (CFLI).


 18-08-2022, 21:31
Peacemaking and Media Technology in Central Asia announces an annual a
competition among students from Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan,
Afghanistan studying journalism and mass communication, law, cultural studies
and anthropology, to participate in research and media monitoring projects.
Over the past
six years, about 60 students have completed the research internships. 
internship is scheduled for the period from December 15, 2022 to January 25,
In some cases,
a student can start an internship earlier.
The internship
will be carried out in a distance format or offline.
The selected
interns will be trained in new analytical tools, will have access to databases
and, together with the team, will conduct a few studies.
in the project is a good practice, upon completion of which an internship
confirmation letter will be issued. An important criterion for selecting
interns is language proficiency, perseverance, attentiveness, a clear
application of methodology and indicators in practice, a desire to work with
large amounts of information. 
Topics for
research this year: 
Freedom of expression in the conflict time
Media хenophobia and hate speech (focused on local countries context)
Media narratives and terrorism threat
Information wars and geopolitics
Fake news, trolling during political and public
Electoral processes
A motivation letter and a CV including
the contacts of at least two referees should be sent to until 18:00 Bishkek time, December 5, 2022 marked
"For internship".
sent after this deadline will not be considered. The team does not comment on
the selection methods and does not respond to letters of inquiry after the end
of the call.
About the organization: The School of Peacemaking and Media Technology in Central Asia is a media
development, peace communications and freedom of expression organization
focused on  countering hate speech, discrimination
in the media, on the Internet and public discourse. 
Our vision statement aims at encouraging
diversity, human rights, peace fair journalism access to information and
citizens making informed opinions as a means of promoting a tolerant society.
Since 2011, the School of Peacemaking and Media Technology in Central Asia has
implemented nearly 20 programs focused on these activities. 
We conduct peace and conflict
research, monitoring and trainings-workshop on media and communications issues.  
To contact:;;;


Public Broadcasting Corporation Transformed Into State Controlled

 14-05-2022, 14:04
Public Broadcasting Corporation Transformed Into State ControlledOn May 13, 2022, President Zhaparov signed a law to change the status of the Public Broadcasting Corporation (OTRK).
The law transformed OTRK, the country's largest and most viewed broadcaster, into a state-owned organization while removing a number of democratic principles designed to ensure the broadcaster's independence. Under the law, the broadcaster would be headed by a person appointed by the president. The Supervisory Board, partially elected by representatives of civil society organizations was disestablished.  There is risking corruption and political interference to the detriment of the public interest in this legislation, media experts said.
"The bill to further undermine the independence of the OTRK, independent journalism, and freedom of expression more broadly, in Kyrgyzstan,- pointed out Inga Sikorskaia, director of the Peacemaking and Media Technology School, a journalist who spent 10 years working as an editor in the Public Broadcasting Corporation at the beginning of her media career.
Further,  the legislation would contradict recommendations supported by Kyrgyzstan during its 3rd cycle of Universal Periodic Review aimed at strengthening democratic institutions by protecting freedom of expression and media freedom.


 1-03-2022, 23:23
STOP RUSSIAN PROPAGANDA IN KYRGYZSTANThe Coalition for Equality, which brings together 36 civil society organizations and activists in Kyrgyzstan, has addressed the president of Kyrgyzstan and the government with an appeal to provide information about the difficult international situation.
"Our residents, who are under Russian informational pressure, receive one-sided information, and local media do not have the opportunity to cover the situation due to the lack of their own correspondents [in the conflict zone]," the statement says.
 The information war, a lot of fakes in the media, and on the Internet provoke our society to divide which can lead to negative consequences.
Members of the Coalition called on the president and government of Kyrgyzstan to ban Russian state news TV channels in Kyrgyzstan’s digital packages and replace them with local ones in order to give balanced news.
The Coalition for Equality is also addressing journalists to create more truthful reporting in local languages.


 25-02-2022, 23:33


STATEMENT OF SUPPORT FOR UKRAINE AND UKRAINIAN JOURNALISTSJustice for Journalists Foundation (JFJ)andthe undersigned organisations, stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine, but particularly Ukrainian journalists who now find themselves at the frontlines of a large-scale European war.

We unilaterally condemn the violence and aggression that puts thousands of our colleagues all over Ukraine in grave danger.

We call on the international community to provide any possible assistance to those who are taking on the brave role of reporting from the war zone that is now Ukraine.

We condemn the physical violence, the cyberattacks, disinformation and all other weapons employed by the aggressor against the free and democratic Ukrainian press.

We also stand in solidarity with independent Russian media who continue to report the truth in unprecedented conditions.

Join the statement of support for Ukraine by signing it here.




1. Justice for Journalists Foundation

2. Index on Censorship

3. International Foundation for Protection of Freedom of Speech "Adil Soz”

4. International Media Support (IMS)

5. Yerevan Press Club


7. Free Press Unlimited

8. Human Rights Center "Viasna”

9. Albanian Helsinki Committee

10. Media Rights Group, Azerbaijan

11. European Centre for Press and Media Freedom

12. Association of European Journalists

13. School of Peacemaking and Media Technology in Central Asia

14. Human Rights Center of Azerbaijan

15. Reporters Without Borders, RSF

16. Association of Independent Press of Moldova, API

17. Public Association "Dignity”, Kazakhstan

18. PEN International

19. Human Rights House Foundation, Norway

20. IFEX

21. UNITED for Intercultural Action

22. Human Rights House Yerevan

23. Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly – Vanadzor, Armenia ??

24. Rafto Foundation for Human Rights, Norway

25. Society of Journalists, Warsaw

26. The Swedish OSCE-network

27. Hungarian Helsinki Committee

28. Legal policy research centre, Kazakhstan

29. Public Foundation Notabene – Tajikistan

30. HR NGO "Citizens’ Watch – St. Petersburg, Russia

31. English PEN

32. Public organization "Dawn” – Tajikistan

33. International Press Institute (IPI)

34. The Union of Journalists of Kazakhstan

35. ARTICLE 19

36. Human Rights House Tbilisi

37. Rights Georgia

38. Election Monitoring and Democracy Studies Center. Azerbaijan

39. International Service for Human Rights (ISHR)

40. Bulgarian Helsinki Committee

41. Global Forum for Media Development (GFMD)

42. European Federation of Journalists

43. Social Media Development Center, Georgia

44. Populus Rei, Georgia

45. OBC Transeuropa

46. The Bureau of Investigative Journalism

47. Journalists Union YENI NESIL, Azerbaijan

48. Media and Law Studies Association (MLSA) , Istanbul

49. Baku Press Club

50. Centre for Journalism Innovation and Development Premium Times

51. Union Sapari

52. The Coalition For Women In Journalism (CFWIJ)

53. Committee to Protect Freedom of Expression, Armenia



56. CFDT-Journalistes

57. Belarusian Association of Journalists

58. SafeJournalists network

59. Association of Journalists of Kosovo

60. Association of Journalists of Macedonia

61. BH Journalists Association

62. Croatian Journalists’ Association

63. Independent Journalists Association of Serbia

64. Trade Union of Media of Montenegro

65. Analytical Center for Central Asia (ACCA)

66. Trade Union of Croatian Journalists

67. European Press Prize

68. Ethical Journalism Network

69. European Journalism Centre

70. Slovene Association of Journalists

71. Investigative Studios

72. PEN Belarus

73. Public Media Alliance (PMA)


  • Military men near the aftermarket during mass clashes, Osh, June 201

  • Training’s participants on mediation and conflict management are building the Tower of Peace, Bishkek, April 2011

  • Training in destroying stereotypes for journalists, Bishkek, April 2012

  • Workshop on production of team reporting in multinational journalist groups, Bishkek, August 2012

Incidents map

Education & Trainings


The School of Peacemaking and Media Technology in Central Asia is announcing the call for participation in the "Reporting on minority…


Workshops on Peacemaking Journalism


25 journalists and media workers from various regions of Kyrgyzstan have been trained to counter the propaganda of violent extremism and hate in…



Webinar "Key tools of destroying stereotypes and cliche during reporting conflict" (88 MB) in Russian, trainer- Arif Aliyev, Azerbaijan.


Camp for Media Innovations

Inside View