ASTANA, November 7, 2018 - Kazakhstan attaches great importance to ensuring freedom of speech and expression, as well as safe working conditions for journalists, and is aimed at further comprehensive development of the media. These commitments were discussed at the meeting of Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan Kairat Abdrakhmanov with the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Harlem Désir.
The sides discussed relevant issues on the protection and promotion of the principles of freedom of speech and expression, and the development of mass media in Kazakhstan, including on a legislative basis.
The sides noted the close and effective partnership between Kazakhstan and the OSCE, reflecting on Kazakhstan's chairmanship of the organisation in 2010, which included hosting a summit, where the historic Astana Declaration was adopted.
The influence of the Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev, known for his peacemaking initiatives aimed at finding mutual understanding between large countries, was noted.
Mr. Abdrakhmanov welcomed the activities of the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, including the effective cooperation established between the OSCE Freedom of the Media office and relevant state agencies in Kazakhstan.
Mr. Désir expressed gratitude to the Kazakh side for the positive assessment of the work of his office, while noting the constructive role of Kazakhstan in the OSCE activities.
The OSCE high-ranking official is in Astana on a two-day visit to participate in the 20th anniversary of the OSCE Central Asian Media Conference on the Future of Journalism. The Conference is attended by about 100 domestic and foreign journalists, representatives of civil society and academia, international experts who discuss issues related to media freedom.
The OSCE Central Asian Media Conference agenda includes the quality of information and future of journalism in the era of digital transformation, “fake” news and disinformation, as well as freedom of expression online.
On the margins of the OSCE Media Conference, Mr. Désir also met with Minister of Information and Communication of Kazakhstan Dauren Abayev.