This report was written by Acacia Shields, senior researcher on Central Asia. Research for the report was conducted by Acacia Shields and Jane Buchanan, Caucasus researcher. The report was edited by Rachel Denber, deputy director of the Europe and Central Asia division, Janet Walsh, deputy director of the Women’s Rights division, Dinah PoKempner, general counsel, and Ian Gorvin, consultant to the Program division. Lois Whitman, director of the Children’s Rights division, and Veronika Szente-Goldston, advocacy director for the Europe and Central Asia division, also reviewed sections of the report. Additional editorial assistance was provided by Holly Cartner, executive director of the Europe and Central Asia division.

Inara Gulpe-Laganovska, coordinator in the Europe and Central Asia division, provided valuable research and technical assistance. Additional research assistance was provided by Human Rights Watch consultants Gulnara Zaynullina and Sardar Bagishbekov, and by Tatiana Li, press and public information officer at the OSCE Centre in Bishkek. Nadira Eshmatova, executive director of the Youth Human Rights Group, and Nurgul Asylbekova, ethnic development and women’s programs coordinator of the Soros Foundation-Kyrgyzstan, provided valuable advice and support.

Human Rights Watch appreciates the cooperation provided to us by the many women’s rights groups and individual rights defenders who spoke with us for this report and who assisted our researchers in identifying persons to be interviewed. We particularly appreciate the cooperation of the NGOs Sezim, Chance, Diamond and the Kyrgyz Committee for Human Rights (KCHR) in Bishkek; Tendesh and Bakubat in Naryn; Spravedlivost and the Association of Women Leaders in Jalal Abad; Ailzat in Osh; and Accent in Tiup (Issyk-Kul province). We also thank independent activists Uliana Aitbaeva, Jamila Kaparova, and Gulnara Mataeva for their cooperation and assistance.

We are forever grateful to the women whose stories appear in this report. We are humbled by their trust in us to communicate their experiences and we share their hope that this report will amount to one of the many steps needed to promote change and prevent future acts of violence against women in Kyrgyzstan.

Human Rights Watch sincerely thanks the Open Society Institute for its generous support of our work in Central Asia.