The Special Rapporteur of the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief, Ahmed Shaheed may visit Uzbekistan again in early 2020, the Foreign Ministry said.
Ahmed Shaheed first visited Uzbekistan in October 2017. In particular, he visited Jaslyk penal colony in northwestern Uzbekistan, which was closed in August 2019.
According to the Foreign Ministry, the Uzbekistan Ambassador to the United States, Javlon Vahabov met with Ahmed Shaheed in Washington. The parties reviewed the implementation of the “road map”, approved during the visit of the Special Rapporteur, as well as the drafting of the new version of the Freedom of Conscience and Religious Organizations Law.
The Special Rapporteur noted the progress achieved in simplifying the procedures for registration and freedom of activity of religious organizations, as well as improving the system of religious education in Uzbekistan.
He reportedly welcomed the cooperation of the Uzbek authorities with the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights and stressed the interest in promoting reforms in the field of protecting religious freedom in the country.