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Hon. Benjamin L. Cardin, Chairman
Hon. Alcee L. Hastings, Co-Chairman
For Immediate Release
May 7, 2009


(Washington, D.C.) Senator Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD), Chairman of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (U.S. Helsinki Commission) and Co-Chairman Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL), will hold a hearing entitled, “Approaching the OSCE Chairmanship: Kazakhstan 2010.” The hearing will be held on Tuesday, May 12, 2009, at 10:00 a.m. in SVC 208/209 of the Capitol Visitor Center.

This is the third in a series of Helsinki Commission hearings on Kazakhstan, which will become the OSCE Chairman in Office next year. These hearings have examined Kazakhstan’s record on human rights and democratization in light of reforms pledged by Foreign Minister Tazhin at the OSCE Ministerial in Madrid in November 2007, which were critical in gaining support by the United States and other countries for Kazakhstan’s bid. This hearing will continue that examination, as January 2010 rapidly approaches.

The following witnesses are scheduled to testify:

Ambassador George A. Krol, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Department of State

His Excellency Erlan Idrissov, Ambassador, Republic of Kazkahstan

Mr. Yevgeny Zhovtis, Director, Kazakhstan International Bureau for Human Rights and the Rule of Law

Dr. Eric McGlinchey, Assistant Professor of Government and Politics, George Mason University

* Other witnesses may be invited

The Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, also known as the U.S. Helsinki Commission, is an independent agency of the Federal Government charged with monitoring compliance with the Helsinki Accords and advancing comprehensive security through promotion of human rights, democracy, and economic, environmental and military cooperation in 56 countries. The Commission consists of nine members from the U.S. Senate, nine from the House of Representatives, and one member each from the Departments of State, Defense, and Commerce.

Media Contact: Shelly Han
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Chairman Chris Smith and the OSCE ODIHR Director Michael Georg Link shake hands at the Winter Meeting of the OSCE PA in Vienna, Austria. (Feb. 2015)