The Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy at the Federal Foreign Office, Markus Löning, issued the following statement today (16 September) on the sentencing of Kyrgyz human rights activist Azimzhan Askarov:
“There are numerous indications that the trial against Azimzhan Askarov did not satisfy rule-of-law standards.
We will follow further proceedings very closely. One thing is clear: The rule of law plays a key role in stabilizing Kyrgyzstan. I therefore call upon President Roza Otunbayeva to do everything in her power to promote and implement rule-of-law structures.”
Azimzhan Askarov was sentenced to a life term yesterday (15 September) by a Kyrgyz provincial court. He was charged with being involved in the June 2010 ethnic turmoil in southern Kyrgyzstan, which claimed many lives. Azimzhan Askarov is a member of the Uzbek minority. The Federal Government Commissioner had raised the case in talks with representatives of the Kyrgyz Government during his visit to Kyrgyzstan in July.