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Bern, Press release, 22.06.2010

The first round of the Human Rights Dialogue between Switzerland and Tajikistan took place on 22 June 2010 in Dushanbe. The dialogue was officially launched by Federal Councillor Micheline Calmy-Rey during her working visit to Central Asia in October 2009. The talks focused on a discussion of a number of human rights themes and the possibility of deepening the dialogue through specific projects.

The Swiss delegation was led by Ambassador Rudolf Knoblauch, Special Envoy for Human Rights Issues, of Political Affairs Division IV, Human Security, which is part of the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA). The talks took place in an atmosphere of openness and mutual respect, permitting a fruitful exchange of ideas. Both parties underscored the importance they would attach in the future to the human rights dialogue.   

Political Affairs Division IV, together with the SDC, in particular the programme of its cooperation office in Dushanbe, intends to develop a common strategy involving a “whole of government approach”, to exploit synergies and promote mutual support.  

Since this was the first round of the dialogue between the two countries, the discussions began with an overview of the instrument of Switzerland’s human rights dialogue. At the same time, expectations and objectives were clarified.    

The talks on the human rights policies of the two countries focused on issues in connection with the Human Rights Council, the situation of Tajik migrants in Russia, women’s rights, and in particular domestic violence and the death penalty.

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