Mourn Loss of Life and Express Support for Democratic Goals of Transition Government
WASHINGTON—U.S. 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) today released the following joint statement on the situation in Kyrgyzstan.
“We urge calm in Kyrgyzstan and express our condolences to families who have lost loved ones during the last several days of unrest. We continue to monitor events as the situation remains fluid, but it appears that, for the second time in five years, the Kyrgyz government has fallen to protesters.
“All involved should resolve the current crisis peacefully, without further violence and with respect for the rule of law. The looting should stop immediately.
“We support OSCE efforts to assist in resolving this crisis and provide a needed forum for dialogue in the country. The swift actions of OSCE Chair-in-Office Saudabayev to send a special envoy to Bishkek are to be applauded.
“We support the stated goals of the interim government to reform the constitution and electoral code and to reverse the repressive record of the previous government.
“The Tulip Revolution, which brought President Bakiev to power, did not produce the hoped-for results for the people of Kyrgyzstan and was marked by corruption and human rights violations, as noted by the U.S. State Department and many others.We hope to see a reversal of that trend in the near future so Kyrgyzstan may become the stable democracy its people deserve.”
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.
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Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic (C), who serves as Chairman-in-Office of the OSCE in 2015, meeting with House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (L) and Helsinki Commission Chairman Chris Smith (R) immediately after the February 25 hearing on Serbia's leadership of the OSCE. (Feb. 2015)