29 Apr 2011

The EU-Central Asia Human Rights Dialogues: Making a Difference?

Vera Axyonova

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Structured human rights dialogues are held with each of the five Central Asian republics. They are designed to discuss questions of mutual interest and enhance cooperation on human rights as well as to raise the concerns of the EU on human rights in Central Asia. In addition, the dialogues seek to involve human rights activists, NGO members, and academia representatives from both Europe and Central Asia through civil society seminars. But is this working? Is improvement in human rights noticeable in the region? This policy brief reviews and evaluates the performance of the dialogues to date, paying specific attention to the shortcomings of the existing practices, and provides recommendations for what could be improved with regard to planning and procedures.