13 december 2017

Central Asia news

Cotton Slavery in Uzbekistan: The Last Victims?

Cotton Slavery in Uzbekistan: The Last Victims?

28.09.2017 17:32 msk Analytics Human Rights Politics Cotton Uzbekistan

The first three weeks of the barely started cotton season in Uzbekistan has already claimed lives of four people. However, since 21 September Uzbek officials are fulfilling the Prime Minister's order prohibiting taking state employees to cotton fields. What made the Uzbek government dramatically change its policy towards using forced labour in agriculture? And is it the end of the long-standing and humiliating "cotton slavery" in the country?

Human Rights Defenders: World Bank should press Uzbekistan for abandoning cotton slavery

Human Rights Defenders: World Bank should press Uzbekistan for abandoning cotton slavery

29.06.2017 15:18 msk Human Rights Business Cotton Uzbekistan

If you google “modern cotton slavery” phrase you would immediately understand what a country will be discussed. These words are tightly connected with Uzbekistan. Although, how much tightly? With the change of the head of state, the population of this country and civil society has had a weak hope of getting rid of the long-term cotton slavery. And while in autumn 2016 the situation in the cotton industry has not changed much, but human rights activists do not give up hope. Again and again, they try to draw the attention of the world community as a whole and of the World Bank which pursues its interests in this country, in particular, to this one of the major problems of Uzbekistan.

High and Dry: Central Asia’s Failure to Avert the Impending Water Crisis

High and Dry: Central Asia’s Failure to Avert the Impending Water Crisis

18.01.2017 10:09 msk Analytics Business Politics Cotton Central Asia Kazakhstan Kyrgyzstan Tajikistan Turkmenistan Uzbekistan

The Harvard International Review's January 2017 edition includes an academic article on problems with water supply in Central Asia. The article author Alisher Ilkhamov is a Research Associate at the Centre of Contemporary Central Asia & the Caucasus at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London. According to Mr Ilkhamov, the worsening international relations in the region are the main source of water-related problems in post-Soviet Central Asia.

Uzbekistan: Everyone, yes, everyone is picking cotton. But two women taking photos

Uzbekistan: Everyone, yes, everyone is picking cotton. But two women taking photos

19.10.2016 10:42 msk Human Rights Business Politics Cotton Uzbekistan

The state-run system of forced labour will further be implemented in Uzbekistan, and the Uzbek authorities will continue diligently hiding this from the World Bank and International Labour Organisation. The latter two, by the way, do not seem to be very keen to uncover and discover any violations—doing so is unnecessary at this time. This also means two genuinely human rights advocates will have to continue monitoring the situation despite problems and obstacles the local authorities continue mounting to prevent their activities. They call themselves Besstrashnye [The Fearless Ones]. The group includes Yelena Urlayeva, the leader of the Human Rights Alliance of Uzbekistan (HRAU), and Malohat Eshonqulova, an independent journalist.

Uzbek expert criticizes World Bank over monitoring of forced labour

Uzbek expert criticizes World Bank over monitoring of forced labour

09.12.2015 19:06 msk Analytics Human Rights Business Politics Cotton Uzbekistan

In late November, the International Labour Organization (ILO) in collaboration with the World Bank published the monitoring results of the use of child and forced labour during the cotton harvest in 2015 in Uzbekistan. The experts of the ILO, as the report says, «could not find conclusive evidence which can prove child or forced labour was used during the cotton harvest season in 2015 in Uzbekistan».

Uzbekistan: Cotton slaves picked sells well, as usual…

Uzbekistan: Cotton slaves picked sells well, as usual…

22.10.2015 13:31 msk Human Rights Business Cotton Uzbekistan

According to many employees of state-funded institutions, who have been forcefully sent to cotton fields in Uzbekistan, they manually collected the entire harvest of cotton this year. They report seeing not even one cotton-picking machine throughout the whole period of their work on the fields. Meanwhile, the official mass media are tirelessly reporting on grandiose achievements in the Uzbek economy’s cotton sector. But are falling short to mention these achievements have been secured thanks to almost free-of-charge slave labour.

Uzbekistan: “We are slaves, indeed!” A photojournalist’s cotton-picking stint (+photos, video)

Uzbekistan: “We are slaves, indeed!” A photojournalist’s cotton-picking stint (+photos, video)

23.09.2015 13:39 msk Human Rights Business Politics Cotton Uzbekistan

The authorities of Uzbekistan relentlessly try to convince that doctors, educators and their students volunteer to travel and contribute to agriculture activities every autumn. Yet, critics of the incumbent authorities continuously maintain forced labour and extortion are rampant on the part of state officials; the conditions of living and food are slavish; diseases and traumas are ubiquitous, while death, too, occurs among the cotton-pickers that have been pulled out of civilised life and thrown onto the “cotton front”. But who is right? In order to get to the root of the problem and experience a personal encounter, photojournalist Timur Karpov travelled to a cotton field from his native Tashkent.

The Uzbek Cotton: The Government’s Riches, the People’s Curse

The Uzbek Cotton: The Government’s Riches, the People’s Curse

15.04.2015 11:17 msk Human Rights Business Politics Cotton Uzbekistan

Children in Uzbekistan grow accustomed to thinking that cotton is the national treasure and the government needs help in harvesting this valuable commodity; otherwise there can be no salaries, pensions, and other social benefits. But the reality is completely different.

More children die on cotton fields in Uzbekistan

More children die on cotton fields in Uzbekistan

22.09.2013 00:16 msk Human Rights Business Cotton Uzbekistan

On 15 Sep 2013, a 6-year-old child suffocated to death under a heap of raw cotton in Bukhara Region in western Uzbekistan. The boy did not go to school on that day, but went to a cotton field to help his mother. He climbed into a trailer and fell asleep. Those collecting cotton did not notice him and dumped raw cotton collected during the day. The child’s dead body was only discovered at a raw cotton storing facility.

Doctors in Uzbekistan on cotton fields: “Impossible to refuse”

03.07.2013 00:01 msk Analytics Business Cotton Uzbekistan

The Uzbek-German Forum for Human Rights compiled and distributed a new video clip on the forced labor of doctors and other medicine-related professionals to weeding cotton fields in Uzbekistan.

Uzbekistan 2012 Cotton Harvest: Continued State-Sponsored Forced Labor of Children and Adults

Uzbekistan 2012 Cotton Harvest: Continued State-Sponsored Forced Labor of Children and Adults

24.12.2012 10:51 msk Cotton Uzbekistan

The 2012 cotton harvest in Uzbekistan has concluded, and the system of forced labor of cotton production remained the same as in previous years. December 20, 2012, the Uzbek-German Forum for Human Rights and the Cotton Campaign released the Review of the 2012 Cotton Harvest, which explains that implementation of the forced labor system was carried out with a demographic shift to older children and more adults, accompanied with an unprecedented scale of corruption. The Review presents observations by human rights defenders throughout Uzbekistan, and highlights the following disturbing trends: continued forced child labor despite a demographic shift of the burden to older children, intensified forced labor of adults, continued rejection of independent monitoring, continued harassment of Uzbek citizens who attempted to monitor, and increased extraction of financial and other resources from Uzbek citizens by government authorities.

Uzbekistan: Parents sent to the cotton fields instead of their children

Uzbekistan: Parents sent to the cotton fields instead of their children

11.09.2012 22:58 msk Cotton Uzbekistan

The Eighth International Uzbek Cotton and Textile Fair is taking place in Tashkent (Uzbekistan) on 17 to 18 October and Uzbekistan’s official media reports that it will be attended by world traders. According to the critics of Islam Karimov’s regime, which has been sending the republic’s unfortunate citizens to “help” the farmers since Soviet times, Western countries are gradually turning away from Uzbekistan’s “white gold” because of the use of forced child and teenage labourers.

Fabric of Abuse: Fashion world snubs fruits of Uzbek child labor

05.10.2011 22:59 msk Cotton Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan: News from the Fields

Uzbekistan: News from the Fields

20.10.2009 16:41 msk Cotton Uzbekistan

In the mid of October the air temperature in the Republic of Karakalpakstan varies from +3 degrees in the night to +25 in the day. Under various temperatures the undersized cotton plant cracks down, forcing the cotton growers, especially kids, stay longer at the fields. Along with the employees of government-sponsored organizations they gather imponderable boxes (2-3 gram) every day. In order to gather one kilo of "white gold" they have to make at least 300 prehensile moves in the thorny bushes. At the same time, they eat third-rate macaronis.

Uzbekistan: The students in the Tashkent Oblast do not go to secondary schools (photo)

Uzbekistan: The students in the Tashkent Oblast do not go to secondary schools (photo)

05.10.2009 14:49 msk Cotton Uzbekistan

Since September 20 the students of colleges and lyceums in Yangiyul rayon of the Tashkent Oblast in Uzbekistan have been working in the cotton fields. The local residents say that secondary school students in the remote villages of the same area also started the cotton season. Ferghana.Ru correspondents decided to learn more about the schoolchildren labor in harvesting raw cotton.

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