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17-18 August 2020, Turkestan, KAZAKHSTAN - Government officials, civil society, development partners and international organizations from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan have held a technical meeting to discuss the experience in strengthening national mechanisms for a Multi-Sectoral Response to Gender-Based Violence (MSR to GBV). The exchange of experience between Central Asian countries was organized as part of a sub-regional project entitled “Strengthening national capacities to improve prevention of, and responses to Gender-Based Violence in Central Asia, implemented by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) with financial assistance from UK Government Programme funding.

Eliminating violence against women requires a holistic approach and a comprehensive and coordinated system to provide services to survivors and to work with their aggressors. A Multi-Sectoral Response to Gender-Based Violence requires a coordinated work among many sectors, including medical, psycho-social and the police. Kazakhstan has adopted a number of important documents that have supported the promotion of gender equality in the country. These measures include relevant national gender-oriented laws as well as the signing and ratification of international agreements and their implementation through policies and programmes. Challenges remain, however. In particular, the mechanisms for implementing the main provisions for a MSR to GBV, do not fully take into account the challenges faced by people with disabilities, who have been subjected to violence, when trying to access such support services.

UNFPA has provided technical support to Kazakhstan since 2016 in developing MSR to GBV mechanisms as reflected in the 2030 Concept of Family and Gender Policy and within the programme on “Kazakhstan without domestic violence” piloted by Kazakhstan’s General Prosecutor’s Office in the Turkestan region and in the city of Shymkent.

The project funded by the UK Government aims to promote good practices and share experiences among countries in the region on their responses to GBV. It is within this context that the technical meeting took place.

The meeting focused on the first day on the experience from the Turkestan Region in implementing a Multi-sectoral response to GBV, which includes the Psycho-Social Support services for survivors of gender-based violence, which serves as a facility that can provide immediate help as well as redirect a survivor to the required institution for any medical, psycho-social or police assistance. During the second day, participants from Central Asian countries discussed lessons learned and shared their experiences in their respective countries and from a national perspective, highlighting next steps to further strengthen their response to GBV.

“Looking at each other’s’ experience and learning from one another is a way forward to make sure we live in a society where there is no place for any violence. With this meeting we would like to facilitate the exchange of experience among representatives of public authorities from the five Central Asian countries and showcase to start with, the experience and achievements of Kazakhstan in creating and introducing a system of Multi-Sectoral Response to Gender-Based Violence,” said UNFPA Representative for Kazakhstan and Country Director for Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan Giulia Vallese.

For more information, please contact UNFPA Communications Specialist Dina Teltayeva at.: +7 7172 696538; +77017654010 or over email