NA (Kyrgyz woman) Tajikistan CG  UKIAT 00133 (28 May 2004)
Date of hearing: 19 May 2004
Date Determination notified: 28 May 2004
|Secretary of State for the Home Department||RESPONDENT|
"The grounds otherwise raise arguable issues relating to ethnic Kyrgyz in Tajikistan and (which it is submitted that the Adjudicator failed to adequately consider) and as to whether women who are risk of trafficking for economic or social profit and/or are capable of being described as vulnerable, are lacking a sufficiency of protection from the state and engage the Refugee Convention (a submission which the Adjudicator rejected)."
10. The Adjudicator dealt with matters at paragraph 21 of his determination as follows.
" The US State Department and CIPU reports confirm that violence against women remains a serious problem and that the police response is lax. Trafficking in women is a problem and police corruption and involvement is an issue.
With all respect to the Adjudicator it seems to us that he has gravely misunderstood the effect of Shah and Islam in that rather generalised approach which does not suggest any active undermining of the position of women in Albania by the provisions of the law."
"The constitution provides for the rights and freedoms of every person regardless of nationality, race, sex, language, political persuasion, or social status and also specifically states that men and women have the same rights; however in practice there was some discrimination against women.
The criminal code prohibits rape (although not specifically spousal rape) which is punishable by up to 20 years imprisonment or, in certain circumstances the death penalty.
The law accords women in equal rights with men however discrimination against women remained a problem. Traditionally there has been a high level of female participation in the workforce and in institutes of higher learning. There was no formal discrimination against women in employment, education, or housing; in urban areas women were employed throughout government, academic institutes and enterprises. However women faced diminishing educational opportunities and increasing poverty. Women legally are entitled to receive equal pay for equal work; however this regulation was not always enforced in practice.
The criminal code protects the women's rights in marriage and family matters. Inheritance laws do not discriminate against women; however in practice some inheritance is passed disproportionately to sons.
There were many local women's groups and NGOs headed by women that worked to improve the status of women. The government has a specific committee for women's and family affairs."
"Vulnerable women are often liable to sexual abuse by police in Central Asia, who can generally act with impunity against women or other people who lack powerful family or other ties. This has been reported in numerous anecdotal ways, and I further learned of it though a colleague who worked in an NGO in Kyrgyzstan supporting the commercial sex workers. It is also something that I have witnessed first-hand on one occasion. Whilst this incident was in Kyrgyzstan, police cultures are very similar. In such circumstances it is quite possible that a vulnerable woman without money or the backing of importance, well-connected or forceful males could find no support from police."
In his conclusion, he states further that the account of the Appellant is entirely plausible and that if true and she were to be returned to Tajikistan "I do not doubt that she would suffer any emotional traumas and the real danger of further physical abuse and attack."