The following is a statement by Mr. Volker Beck, one of the three German parliamentarians of the Human Rights Committee:
"The Uzbek government has canceled the long scheduled visit of the Human Rights Committee of the German parliament to Uzbekistan, for "technical and organizational reasons." Volker Beck, one of the three planned delegation members and spokesman for the Human Rights Policy of the Parliamentary Group of the Alliance '90 / The Greens explains the decision of the Uzbek government:
That is very bad form. This refusal is in effect nothing more than the Karimov regime not wanting to be observed and wanting the countless human rights abuses in the country to remain unnoticed. In particular, the child labor in the cotton harvest and the situation of threatened journalists would have been on our agenda.
Last fall, members of the Committee also attempted to travel to Tashkent. At that time, the autocratic President Karimov’s excuse not to allow the delegation in was that he had to prepare for an important speech, and therefore not a single official appointment was possible. A meeting with him had not even been on our itinerary. The renewed rejection is even flimsier than that of last year. The Uzbek government does not even try to advance substantive reasons.
This irreverent handling of the German Bundestag must be clearly and directly criticized. Both the discussions with governments on development cooperation on September 18 and 19 and the bilateral consultations of the two governments later this year are opportunities. The Federal Government must finally stop providing non-stop and public support for the regime of Karimov, including in Brussels.
Here you will find [in German only]:
1) “Human Rights in Uzbekistan,” the response of the Federal Government to the inquiry by the Parliamentary Group of the Alliance '90 / The Greens'
2) "For a credible foreign policy towards Uzbekistan," the proposal of the Parliamentary Group the Alliance '90 / The Greens
3) "The Federal Government’s Uzbekistan policy," the response of the Federal Government to the inquiry by the Parliamentary Group of the Alliance '90 / The Greens
4) "Strengthening Human Rights in Central Asia," the joint request of the Parliament for the SPD and Alliance '90 / The Greens""