GENEVA -- A report published by the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women on Tuesday (September 18) warned of systemic human rights violations in Kyrgyzstan linked to "a culture of abduction, rape, and forced marriage", Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) reported.
The document, based on a confidential inquiry conducted by two committee members, was commissioned after 14 rights organisations accused Bishkek of failing to protect the victims of bride kidnapping or to punish the perpetrators.
"Abduction of girls and women for child- or forced marriage should not be accepted as a cultural tradition, but must be prosecuted and punished as a crime that regularly involves rape of the victim," said report co-author Lia Nadaraia.
The UN committee urged the Kyrgyz government to improve legislation related to forced marriages, as well as to investigate, punish and prevent crimes connected to sexual violence and abductions.
The committee ordered Kyrgyzstan to provide a follow-up report by March 2019.