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   The UN Link / The United Nations System in Kyrgyzstan
# 185
March 28, 2003

In this issue:


  • Action Plan to Advocate Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in Kyrgyzstan discussed in the UN House


  • Regional Forum on Effectiveness of Poverty Reduction Programmes in Osh
  • Press Conference on Preventive Development in Osh


  • Sociological survey "Studying The Issue of HIV/AIDS Spread and Prevention In The Kyrgyz Republic”


  • Media release with the information of UNHCR’s position in connection with the start of war in Iraq


  • School Parliamentarians of Bishkek discuss “Children’s Code” in the Jogorku Kenesh of the Kyrgyz Republic


The meeting of MDG Task Force, National partners represented by Comprehensive Development Secretariat staff and mass media to discuss an Action Plan of Millennium Development Goals promotion in Kyrgyzstan took place on 18 March 2003 at the UN House. The main goal of the meeting was to develop a joint MDG Advocacy Action Plan where Comprehensive Development Framework and National Poverty Reduction Strategy are seen as instruments for achievement of the Millennium Goals. The concrete measures to increase awareness of the population on the MDGs closely linked with CDF and NPRSP were proposed by the CDF National Coordinator Mr. Kubat Kanimetov, Chief of the CDF Secretariat Mr. Leonid Komarover and UNDP National Programme Analyst Ms. Aikan Mukanbetova. As it was noted the first MDG Report is under finalization at present time. In the nearest future the final version of the Report will be presented and discussed at a round table with broad participation of civil society, government, international community and mass media.

In order to strengthen partnership and participation in implementation of MDGs, adopted by Kyrgyzstan among 190 countries on the Millennium Summit in September 2000 as well as Comprehensive Development Programme (2010) and National Poverty Reduction Strategy (2003-2005) and advocate these strategies in the country the MDGs Task Force was created and an Action Plan designed. It was agreed during the meeting that representatives of the CDF Secretariat as well as Kyrgyz media will be part of the MDGs Task Force and will further participate in the decision making process to promote Millennium Development Goals, CDF and PRSP in Kyrgyzstan.

Contact: Aikan Mukanbetova, UNDP National Programme Analyst. Phone: (996 312) 611 213. Fax: (996 312) 611 217. Email:


Regional Forum on Effectiveness of Poverty Reduction Programmes took place in Osh on 14 March 2003. The Forum held at the premises of Osh State Administration brought together heads of Osh province municipalities and leaders of Community Based Organizations from the most remote areas of the province. The event was meant to be a boost to local authorities and international organizations’ confidence in tackling some of the issues at hand.

The Forum was chaired by the Governor of Osh province Mr. Kasiev who opened it with the report on economic development of the region and role of all institutions and layers of population in fighting poverty. In his speech the governor highly estimated contribution of the various UNDP programmes to reducing poverty in Osh province by means of social mobilization, capacity building, micro-financing and provision of infrastructure grants. He stressed the paramount importance of constant cooperation and information sharing between local authorities and international organizations. At the same time Mr. Kasiev called on heads of municipalities to better inform population on opportunities in the area of micro-crediting. “Many villagers are afraid of taking loans for they are just unaware of their basic civil rights”, said Osh Governor in his statement. Finally, the governor expressed hope that in the following year population of the region as well as local businessmen with the help of international community will make a break-through in terms of improving people’s livelihood and developing local industries.

Thereafter the representatives of international organizations working or intending to start projects in Osh province reported on their activities and future plans. Heads of USAID, Asian Development Bank and FINCA in Kyrgyzstan and the representative of the World Bank presented their programmes.

At the end of the morning session the Governor of Osh Province Mr. Kasiev awarded Mr. Jotham Mdingi, International UNV and Rural Development/Credit Specialist in the UNDP Poverty Alleviation Program with Honorary Diploma for his personal significant input into successful implementation of the UNDP PAP program and its proven capacity to bring about changes to lives of common villagers of Osh province.

After lunch participants of the Forum visited Aravan rayon where they observed various project sites, met with members of Community Based Organizations, Self-Help Groups and local authorities.

Press Conference on UNDP Preventive Development Programme took place in Osh on 11 March 2003. UN Liaison Officer Andrei Khanzhin, Programme Manager Anara Salamatova, Component Coordinator Ruslan Molonbaev, and Regional Coordinator Abdiraim Jorokulov presented the UNDP Preventive Development Programme to 15 most famous journalists representing local TV, newspapers and radio stations at the premises of Osh Media Center in Osh. This initiative aimed at making the programme more visible and establishing tighter links with media working in the South of Kyrgyzstan. Journalists were briefed on programme’s activities carried out during the years 2000-2002 in Batken oblast and recent expansion of the programme over Osh and Jalal-Abad provinces. The general information about the program was followed by detailed description of forthcoming activities in Osh province presented by Abdiraim Jorokulov. Participants expressed genuine interest in the programme’s strategy, plans and overall UNDP contribution and approach to conflict prevention in the region. At the end of the press-conference journalists explicitly voiced their wish to maintain continuos and mutually beneficial cooperation with the UNDP. Contact: Andrei Khanzhin, UN Liaison Officer in South of Kyrgyzstan. Phone: (996 3222) 5 58 66, mobile: (0517) 75 08 67. Email:


On March 25, 2003, UN House hosted a presentation of the sociological survey "Studying the Issue of HIV/AIDS Spread and Prevention in the Kyrgyz Republic: Social, Economic, and Psychological Aspects". The survey was carried out by the Joint UN Agencies Programme on Expanded Response to HIV/AIDS in the Kyrgyz Republic with the assistance of the Information Assistance Fund "Kyrgyzstan in Development". In his opening speech Mr. David Akopyan, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative, noted that the carried out survey serves as monitoring of the problem including establishing intercommunication with the population of the country, and helps to find the weak aspects of the problem itself.

Mr. Tursunbek Bekbolotov, First Deputy Minister of Education and Culture emphasized the importance of the conducted survey since it assists in assessment of the AIDS preventive programmes done in the past and identify correctly the future priorities in this area. He also noted that effective AIDS preventive programmes should be based upon a substantial assessment of existing situation in HIV/AIDS in the country.

The survey identifies and clarifies reasons and capacity building for risky behaviors, aspects of population vulnerability towards HIV/AIDS, and possible means of supporting behavior change. The research was conducted in 5 provinces (Chui, Osh, Jalal-Abad, Yssyk-Kul, and Talas), and in Bishkek, the capital of the Kyrgyz Republic.

1004 people at the age of 15 to 55 were sampled. Out of total respondents 50,6% were males, and 49,4% females. 63,9% of the respondents were urban population, and 36.1% rural population. On the whole the population of the Kyrgyz Republic is aware of HIV/AIDS, though those living in the rural areas are informed less. Mass media is considered as the most popular source of information about HIV, and TV is in particular the main one. 19,5% of the respondents have random sexual relationships, and 9% of the respondent use the services of the sex-workers. 41,9% of respondents do not use condom during random sexual contacts. The risk groups are the people of 30 years old. They are mostly practicing random sexual contacts and unprotected sex. Those respondents who have permanent sex partners are more careful with random sexual contacts, though they are not always using condoms. Therefore the high incidence of sexually transmitted infections and growth of HIV/AIDS cases, concurrent low level of condom use and high population mobility create actual threat of HIV infection spread sexually.

At the same time, the Kyrgyz Republic observes the increase in HIV infection cases transmitted sexually among the local citizens: from 3% in 2001 up to 22% in 2002. In this regard the birth of HIV infected children is quite high. The conducted survey was first of this scope in HIV/AIDS area in the country. It identifies the priority areas for prevention: raise the awareness in the rural area; introduce educational programmes on healthy lifestyle for the schools; continue preventive programmes in the southern part of the Republic.

The survey will be distributed to the broad audience in Kyrgyzstan – NGOs working in the area of healthcare, governmental agencies, international community, education institutions and mass media. In the nearest days the research will also be posted on the UNDP website:

Contact: Ms. Ekaterina Paniklova, Programme Coordinator, Joint UN Agencies Programme on Expanded Response to HIV/AIDS in the Kyrgyz Republic. Phone/fax: (996 312) 66 36 91. Phone: (996 312) 66 16 17, e-mail:


On 20 March 2003 UNCHR Liaison Office in Bishkek disseminated among the informational agencies of Kyrgyzstan a media release with the following information reflecting UNHCR’s position in connection with the start of war in Iraq.

“UNHCR is greatly concerned with the military action in Iraq since any large-scale military operation is expected to result in the internal and external displacement of large numbers of civilians and serious humanitarian need. UNHCR Bishkek remains in close contact with relevant offices of the Kyrgyz Republic and, at present, is aware of no Iraqi asylum seekers in Kyrgyzstan. Because of the geographic distance between Kyrgyzstan and Iraq, and the preparations now underway in the countries surrounding Iraq, there is no reason to expect numbers of Iraqi asylum seekers at the frontiers of Kyrgyzstan. The situation in Afghanistan is also being watched closely, as ongoing events in Iraq might have effect there, which could have regional implications.

UNHCR and the countries surrounding Iraq, together with other UN agencies and NGO partners, have made significant preparations for displacement within Iraq and refugee outflows to surrounding countries, including Iran, Jordan and Turkey. UNHCR's contingency planning for a possible conflict in Iraq was based on an initial preparedness figure for 600,000 refugees. In the event of refugee flows, UNHCR would focus primarily on its mandated international protection and advocacy role, including monitoring in support of keeping borders open and ensuring that the rights of refugees are respected. Materially – and depending on available resources – UNHCR would support governments in providing essential services, including food, basic shelter, water, sanitation facilities, health care and clothing.” Contact: James Lynch, UNHCR Head of Office. Tel.: (996 312) 61 12 64, 61 12 65, e-mail:


School Parliamentarians of Bishkek discuss “Children’s Code” in the Jogorku Kenesh of the Kyrgyz Republic. On March 12, 2003, about 80 children came to the Session Hall of the Jogorku Kenesh to discuss development of the Children’s Code as part of the “New Generation” Programme. It was organised by Parliament Member Mr. Kabay Karabekov with the support of UNICEF in Kyrgyz Republic.

The main purpose of the gathering was to ensure the schoolchildren be aware of actions undertaken by different agencies towards development of Children’s Code and can make their suggestions as to make it effective and useful for children. For many of the schoolchildren present it was for the first time in the Jogorku Kenesh. The general atmosphere and greeting words of the organisers – everything underlined the importance of the work that lay before representatives of school parliaments. They got an opportunity to use their right to express themselves and influence a creation of the main legislative tool for them to live in the society and realise their rights.

The young participants were invited to work in working groups to elaborate ideas how children can participate in the Programme New Generation and how to build dialogue to resolve difficult issues. Six reporters presented their groups findings. All the suggestions were analysed and submitted to the Secretariat of the Programme New Generation to develop further steps of children’s involvement.

The meeting showed that both children and adults are ready and willing to co-operate. What is needed now is to ensure that there is opportunity, time and a place for the opinions of children and young people to be heard and given due weight.

Children’s participation is proving to be an important element for successful implementation of the activities under the on-going UNICEF-Kyrgyz Government Joint Programme. In her remarks, Ms. Gulsana Turusbekova, UNICEF Programme Officer, reinforced the view that children’s meaningful participation in the development of the country is one of the key pillars to build a better future of children.

Contact: Richard Young, Resident Representative. Phone: (996 312) 61 12 24, 61 12 25; e-mail:

     Millennium Development Goals Progress Report - 2003

     Common Country Assessment - 2003

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