11 2018 GT and TokayevGeorge Tsereteli and Kassym-Jomart Tokayev in Astana, 19 November 2018ASTANA, 19 November 2018 – OSCE PA President George Tsereteli (MP, Georgia) commended today Kazakhstan’s strong support of the OSCE and its active participation in the Parliamentary Assembly as a sign of the country’s commitment to the success of the Organization.

“Since chairing our Organization and hosting the last OSCE summit in 2010, Kazakhstan has continued to demonstrate its unconditional commitment to our work through continuous engagement in our activities,” said Tsereteli. “Following our recent Autumn Meeting in Bishkek, this visit is another important step to underscore Astana’s efforts to promote regional and international co-operation including through the OSCE, and to further underline our strong commitment to security in Central Asia.”

The OSCE PA President was accompanied in meetings in Astana by his newly appointed Special Representative on Central Asia, Austrian parliamentarian Roman Haider, Deputy Secretary General Semyon Dzakhaev and the Head of the OSCE Programme Office in Astana, Ambassador Gyorgy Szabo.

On 19 November, they met with the Chairman of the Senate and Head of Kazakhstan’s Delegation to the OSCE PA, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, the Chairman of the Mazhilis, Nurlan Nigmatulin, and Foreign Minister Kairat Abdrakhmanov to discuss a wide range of issues including strengthening parliamentarism, nuclear non-proliferation, economic reforms and enhancing social welfare of citizens, promoting the rule of law through police and judiciary reform, as well as regional co-operation and the role of the OSCE in promoting regional security and addressing transnational threats such as terrorism.

11 2018 GT and NigmatulinGeorge Tsereteli and Nurlan Nigmatulin in Astana, 19 November 2018“This past year has shown that we can find inspiration in the diplomatic breakthroughs that have taken place in Central Asia, and I look forward to the continued active engagement of Kazakhstani parliamentarians to address the region’s challenges in our discussions and debates,” said Haider. “I believe it is important that we continue to work together towards the fulfillment of every country’s OSCE commitments, whilst also learning more about the successes and challenges faced by individual participating States.”

The OSCE PA delegation also met with Ambassador Gyorgy Szabo and the staff of the Programme Office in Astana. Representatives of civil society engaged in OSCE-supported reforms aimed at modernizing the police and enhancing citizens’ trust in the judiciary system also stressed the importance of engaging civil society in the reform process to help ensure the sustainability of reforms.

The OSCE PA delegation is scheduled to meet on 20 November with the Chairman of the Supreme Court, Zhakyp Assanov, as well as officials at the Prosecutor General’s Office and the Ministry of Internal Affairs, to further discuss the status of police and justice reform.

President Tsereteli and Special Representative Haider’s visit to Central Asia continues on 21 November in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, where they will meet with senior officials. The President will also attend the Asian Forum on Human Rights in Samarkand on 22-23 November, together with the Chair of the OSCE PA General Committee on Democracy, Human Rights and Humanitarian Questions Margareta Kiener Nellen.