International Partnership for Human Rights (IPHR) and Turkmen Initiative for Human Rights (TIHR) have submitted a joint report for the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of Turkmenistan, which will be carried out under the auspices of the UN Human Rights Council in November 2023.
The joint submission covers a number of key human rights issues of concern to IPHR and TIHR, including state media control, internet censorship and lack of government transparency on issues of public interest; persecution of critical voices both at home and abroad; the lack of space for independent civil society engagement in the country; ongoing problems of arbitrary detention, torture, disappearances and harsh prison conditions; and restrictions on the rights and role of women. It highlights the government’s failure to effectively implement recommendations received in these areas during the last UPR of Turkmenistan in 2018.
The submission has been prepared as part of IPHR’s and TIHR’s ongoing cooperation on documenting fundamental rights developments in Turkmenistan. It is based on information obtained by TIHR through its monitoring of the situation in Turkmenistan with the help of an in-country network of activists, as well as information from other independent organisations, which monitor and report on developments in the country.
The UPR is a review mechanism covering all UN member states that takes places under the auspices of the UN Human Rights Council. It involves a review of the human rights record of individual states based on information provided by the states themselves, UN human rights bodies, as well as civil society organisations and other stake-holders and is carried out through an inter-active exchange between the state concerned and member and observer states of the Human Rights Council. It ends with the adoption of an outcome report featuring recommendations to the state concerned. Reports submitted by NGOs feed into a document with civil society concerns compiled for the review by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and are an important source of information for state delegations taking part in the review.