C. ACTIVITY OVERVIEW
Central Asia Website (Russian Language)
ICNL has continued to develop its Russian language on line resources. The website now contains
general and country specific publications, a calendar of events, laws from each country relating to
NGOs, and links to local partner organizations. For more information, please see
Public Legal Education Initiative Linkages
Law professors from Tajik State University, Tajik Slavic University, Kyrgyz Slavic University, and
the Adilet School of Law in Kazakhstan are taking steps to open NGO legal courses. In May 2003
they traveled to Budapest, Hungary to participate in the ICNL regional Newly Independent States
(NIS) conference Institutionalizing the law of non commercial organizations into legal curricula,
accompanied by the ICNL Program Director for Central Asia. In Budapest they exchanged
experiences with professors from Bulgaria, Hungary, Estonia, Ukraine, Croatia, and Albania on
teaching NGO law. This program was supported by USAID through CEE NIS linkages funding.
Technical Assistance with the Draft Law on NGOs
After the Ministry of Culture, Information and Public Accord made it clear that they were not taking
into consideration the comments of NGOs on the working group ICNL turned its attention to
supporting the then pregnant advocacy initiative of local NGOs.
Enabling Advocates to Speak Against the Draft Law
On April 03, 2003, Mr. Ovcharenko, ICNL Legal Consultant, spoke at a briefing, conducted by OSCE
with the purpose of informing international and foreign organizations' representatives in Kazakhstan
about the major problems associated with this NGO draft law prepared by the Ministry of Culture,
Information and Public Accord. Mr. Ovcharenko made a presentation commenting on the latest NGO
draft law. He also distributed ICNL's comments identifying the key problems with the draft law to
the participants. These comments are also available on the ICNL Russian language website. ICNL
provided the following additional support:
Assistance with the advocacy campaign against the draft NGO law to the Platform Initiative
Group, an informal association of NGOs engaged in a campaign against the draft NGO law. The
on going assistance includes updates on developments with the draft NGO law as it remains under
consideration in the government, assistance with drafting letters and petitions against the law
addressed to the President, Government, and other. Leaders. In this initiative group are the
Youth Information Service of Kazakhstan (YISK), Institute of Development Cooperation (IDC),
and Counterpart Consortium Civil Society Support Centers.
Expert participation in the roundtable discussion organized by the ANNOK in opposition to the
NGO draft law.
Assistance to KNOK, another Kazakh umbrella NGO, in its preparation for a meeting with the
government officials. KNOK's President, Valentina Sivryukova, met with Mr. Tazhin, the First
Deputy Head of President's Administration, and some representatives from key Ministries
involved with social sphere to speak about deficiencies in the draft NGO law.
Expert participation in June 10 conference On draft law on NGOs in Kazakhstan: pros and
contras, organized by the OSCE. ICNL's experts presented international experience on forms of
social partnership between civil society, business, and government and highlighted legal
mechanisms and issues of contracting in Kazakhstan.
Assistance to the NGO's coalition with drafting a letter to the President advocating against the
draft NGO law, which was signed by the OSCE Ambassador and NGO leaders in June.
Participation in the June 18 press conference conducted by OSCE and NGO leaders devoted to
the open letter to the President signed by the OSCE Ambassador and NGO leaders, requesting he
change his directions to the Government on preparing the draft law for NGOs. At the press