Human rights activists are condemning the Asian Development Bank for holding its annual meeting in Uzbekistan’s capital, Tashkent. They say the summit is helping to legitimize the repressive policies of President Islam Karimov’s administration.
The four-day Asian Development Bank gathering is set to conclude May 4. It marks the first time in the institution’s 43-year history that the ADB has convened its board of governors meeting at a Central Asian venue.
Holding the event in Tashkent “risks sending a signal about the bank and its shareholders somehow approving of the Uzbek government's policies, and will no doubt be exploited by the host government for internal and external PR purposes,” Veronika Szente Goldston, Human Rights Watch’s advocacy director for Europe and Central Asia, told EurasiaNet.org.
The ADB’s partners, especially the European Union and the United States, “have grown increasingly silent in the face of Uzbek government repression,” continued Goldston. The event creates “an impression of the EU and the US effectively giving up any serious effort to promote human rights as part of their engagement with Uzbekistan.”
To read the full story