How the law enforcement agencies of the Kyrgyz Republic are functioning (abstract)

Ilimbek Sadykov (UNDP HIV Programme in Bishkek; Kyrgyz Republic).

The Kyrgyz Republic is one of the former Soviet states with a fixed, repressive drug policy. How it deals with drugs has been considered through criminal law tactics and accordingly drug users have been shown to the society as criminals rather than patients. But this policy could not effectively counter the spread of drug addiction and has been unsuccessful. Therefore, in the first quarter of 2010 in the Republics Center of Narcology 4179 drug users were officially registered in Bishkek city (the capital of the Kyrgyz Republic) which does not show the real situation with drug addiction. Moreover even now when a lot of drug addiction prevention and harm reduction programmes are functioning in the Government trends toward humanization of criminal drug policy there are far too many cases of repressive ways of working as drug users are the key targets for police activity. Calling for attention are intensifications with drug addiction and overcrowded prisons with injecting drug users as well as a growth of HIV cases in the country, the Government adopted several national programmes and concepts directed to drug addiction and HIV prevention. Simultaneously many NGOs were established to work for mentioned objectives, one of them is the Legal Clinic “Adilet (which in kyrgyz means “fairness)”. Protection of rights of people living with HIV (thereafter as PLHIV) and key populations at higher risk such as injecting drug users, sex workers, LGBT’s (groups) which is one of the leading directions of LC “Adilet” activity. The Bureau in the LC “Adilet” for protection of the rights of PLHIV and groups, is the first created Bureau in the post-soviet area with a well-educated staff and advanced equipment; The Bureau has more than 5 years of practical experience in protection of PLHIV and groups rights. During last 5 years the LC “Adilet” recieved excellent work experience with law enforcement agencies (police, prosecutor´s office and courts). Today advocates of LC “Adilet” (where I have also been involved for more than three years) created many court precedents, when their accused beneficiaries were released and did not bear an unmerited criminal liability. Early on many police officers often used illegal methods in working with drug users such as beating and receiving of testimonials on exchanging their guilt, now such cases are decreasing. Additionally the LC “Adilet” created the system of a “HOT LINE” affording every beneficiary to be legally assisted anytime. Since 2002 the LC “Adilet”: – provided more than 2000 individual legal consultations; – represented interests of more than 300 PLHIV as well as groups in law enforcement agencies; – conducted more than 50 trainings for stakeholders. Moreover the Bureau experience in this sphere allows LC “Adilet” personnel to participate in the legislation process, in particular, Kyrgyz Law on HIV/AIDS, Instructions for police in HIV and drug addiction prevention issues and other norms were worked out with the participation of the LC “Adilet”. Systematically LC “Adilet” organizes trainings for representatives of law enforcement agencies, who are directly engaged with injecting drug users. Moreover some of trainings have been organized for police officers in the Kyrgyz southern largest cities – Osh, Jalalabat; Therefore this Bureau can be considered to be the main force in PLHIV and groups rights protection in the Kyrgyz Republic. Working with PLHIV and groups the Bureau makes contribution objectives directed to create a favourable legal environment for programmes on prevention of drug addiction and HIV.

CV: Ilimbek Jeenbekovich Sadykov – Education: PhD candidate, Kyrgyz State Law Academy, third year; M.A Hon. in International Law, International University of Kyrgyzstan, 2007; B.A. Hon. in International Law, International University of Kyrgyzstan, 2005; Career: Legislation Component Coordinator of the UNDP HIV Programme (November of 2009-present); project coordinator of the Сentral Аsian AIDS Control Рroject (CAAP); senior lawyer, NGO Legal Clinic “Adilet” (2008 till November of 2009); lawyer in the Bureau for protection the rights of PLHIV (people living with HIV/AIDS) and vulnerable groups (injecting drug users, sex workers, prisoners, LGBTs); the NGO Legal Clinic “Adilet” (2006 till 2008), License of Advocacy is available under # 2216; Internship in UNHCR Representation in Bishkek (from June 2005 till October 2005); Volunteer at the Youth Organization “Taza muun” specializing in HIV and drug using prevention among youth; Other activities: Eastern Europe and Central Asia AIDS Conference (EECAAC), 2009, Moscow (Russian Federation); IHRA’s 20th International Conference “Harm Reduction and Human Rights”, 2009, Bangkok (Thailand); The Meeting “Access to HCV diagnosis and treatment in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, organized by EHRN and OSI, 2009, Kiev (Ukraine); The Third Central Asian Forum of partners working on HIV counteraction organized by the Central Asian AIDS Control Project (CAAP), 2008, Almaty, The Republic of Kazakhstan; The First International School “Best Practices in the Care of HIV Infected Adolescents and Youth” organized by Baylor International Pediatric AIDS Initiative (BIPAI) and Infectious Diseases Hospital of Constanta, 2008, Constanta, Romania; The 19th International Summer School on Human Rights organized by Helsinki Foundation on Human rights, 2008, Warsaw-Miedzeszyn, Poland.