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Kazakhstan Cooperation with OSCE on Security Issues and Protection of Human

Rights Progress Towards Democracy?

Table of Contents
1. Abstract .....3
2. Objective of research proposal..5
3. Research Questions...5
4. Literature Review..6
5. Theoretical Framework....15
6. Methodology17
7. Ethical considerations..19
8. Limitations...19
9. Time Table...20
10. Chapter Outline .20
References22

1. Abstract
The OSCE, a regional organization demonstrating high values of human rights
policies failed to influence Kazakhstan, a country blessed with abundant natural resources
located in Central Asia. For a long time, OSCE condemned Kazakhstan pathetic human rights
policies and advised consistently to amend its attitude for attainment of sustainable
democratic growth. The OSCE chairmanship in 2010 offered a missed opportunity for
Kazakhstan to honor its commitment for establishing political and civil rights and to bring
democratic changes in the country. There were two prime factors, which contribute to this
non achievement of tasks, first, the deficiency in the institutional capacity of the OSCE in
offering punishment or an incentive system to compel member nations in order to accomplish
their promises and secondly, circumstances created by internal and external forces in
Kazakhstan, which obstruct democratic movement.
On December 1 and 2, 2010, Kazakhstan capital, Astana, held one of the most
memorable events to demonstrate the nations first foreign policy towards human rights,
named as the OSCE summit based on Vienna convention. In the capital of Kazakhstan,
Astana, Several heads of governments, foreign ministers representing fifty five OSCE
member nations assembled to attend first of kind summit in the past eleven years since the
earlier summit that took place in Istanbul.
The summit encouraged a significant development of public relations for the country
as well as for nations favorite president, Nursultan Nazarbayev, by demonstrating a unique
model: the first Muslim dominated country, the first former USSR republic, and the first
country from Central Asia to organize the annual revolving chairmanship of the esteemed
regional organization.
The OSCE summit was a unique event that included glamorous pump and show that
included welcome of statesmen on the red carpet, TV cameras catching pictures of

handshakes in dramatic style and great smiles. It was a demonstration worth several million
dollars with an aim to demonstrate that Kazakhstan is a rising power and has the capability in
discharging international responsibilities. This research focuses whether Kazakhstan could
achieve any advantage by holding such an event or not. In terms of enhancing the image of
the nation, the chairmanship undoubtedly proved beneficial for both Nazarbayev and the
nation. In respect of transformations and uplifting human values of its citizens and
strengthening democracy, the results proved discouraging.
An effective podium for the Eastern and Western Europe debate during the
cooperation era of the Cold War, this organization had been active in Eastern and Central
Europe with achievement of significant outcomes in the security and political aspects during
the 1980s and 1990s.
The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe still continues to promote
democracy by acting as a regional platform for political negotiations, dialogue, partnerships
and solving problems of member nations. However, because of its inadequate ability to
impose a carrot and stick tool the OSCE is helpless since several member nations fail to
adhere the organizations criteria. The name and shame technique or by openly condemning
the member nations who do not comply the principles laid by the organization is obviously
what maximum the OSCE can act. The socialization process, between the Kazakhstan
administrators and their peers from the OSCE member nations also failed to produce fruitful
results.
Besides, there are several reasons for the failure, which relates to the inability of
Kazakh to move ahead on the path of democratic advancement. The Kazakhstan leadership
demonstrates strong dictator characteristic as the authority of the regime continues to be in
the hands of Nazarbayev for more than two decades. As such, Kazakhstan do not represent a
model of democracy and several findings declared by Human Rights Watch and Freedom

House criticizes the nation for human rights violations, especially with respect to freedom of
press and media, fair elections, limited political participation, and freedom of religion.
2. Objective of research proposal
The objective of this research is to examine whether the Kazakhstan involvement with
the OSCE and organizing the 2010 chairmanship of the OSCE assisted nation in achieving
substantial improvements at domestic level, or change its inferior human rights history.
Further, the objective of this research is to explore why involvement with the OSCE
organization, which currently is popular as a watchdog of human rights rather a security
organization, failed to compel Kazakhstan to improve its attitude toward democratic
advancement. Besides, the research will also explore why the nations government could not
implement serious efforts for coming nearer to achieve international human rights criterion.
In this aspect, why the socialization theory that could have been successful with the coalition
of OSCE failed and what were reasons, which despite the consistent interaction between the
participating nations could not bring desired results in the case of Kazakhstan and OSCE.
3. Research Questions
1. To find out and evaluate the human rights condition in Kazakh, before and after the
Madrid summit held in 2007, by studying publishing of human rights organizations.
2. To examine the role of the socialization theory and the participation of international bodies
in boosting democratic progress in transitioning societies.
3. To detect the deficiency in the OSCE functioning, focusing on its incapability of
punishment and reward system and the concerns created by the collective decision, and when
comparing to other European organizations, why it could not appear to be effective in
efficiently implementing democratic reforms.
4. Why Kazakhstan internal political context with respect to media, elections and political
freedom failed to offer incentives to initiate democratic reforms.

5. What were the key reasons for selecting Kazakhstan to chair the OSCE for the year 2010?
4. Literature Review
Evaluation of Human Rights that Prevailed Before and After Madrid Summit
This literature offer the human rights conditions in Kazakhstan, regarding the
promises committed by the Kazakhstan Foreign Affairs Minister during the OSCE summit
held in Madrid in 2007, when the nation received an opportunity to chair the OSCE in 2010.
The research examines three prime areas of reforms in which Kazakhstan has committed to
bringing changes such as political participation, election process, and press and media, by
exposing several reports and assessments done by media and human right organizations.
Overall, the reforms could not provide benefits to enhance the civil and political rights and
record of human rights reformations failed to show any improvement. The nation regularly
received criticism for its deficit in fairness of the electoral procedures and reporters have
highlighted that elections are not fair and free. After witnessing an era of political disturbance
during 2000s and assassination of some opposition party leaders, Altynbek Sarsenbayev of
Nagyz Ak Zhol and Zamanbek Nurkadilov leader of For a Fair Kazakhstan group, the
2007 electoral process established a rule of single party with a majority of Members of
Parliament representing from the ruling party.1 There was no opportunity for the opposition to
represent in the Parliament. Undoubtedly, the amendments in law paved the way to a multiple
party mechanism in the assembly beginning from onward elections, but scholars doubted that
this would be rather an establishment of fallacious parliamentary structure by assisting
authorized opposition groups or pro-government parties to make entry in the Parliament.
Political activity has been under total governance of president Nazarbayev and leaders of Nur
Otan presidential party. As such, opposition parties encounter several restrictions and
1

Freedom House 2009, Freedom in the World 2009, Kazakhstan, Washington, D.C.: Freedom House at
http://lib.ohchr.org/HRBodies/UPR/Documents/Session7/KZ/FH_UPR_KAZ_S07_2010_FreedomHouse_Anne
x1.pdf (accessed March 4, 2011)

injustice in the shape of unreasonable persecution and arrests. The amendments in the law
could not generate meaningful developments for political parties. The process of registration
was tough, and the law demanded excessive formalities, for example, forbidding parties
formation on religion or ethnicity, demanding personal data of the people, or restrictions for
those members seeking entry into administrative office. The significant reformations with
respect to freedom of the press and media were not visible either. Scholars describe that
nations press and media are devoid of freedom. Regardless of some meaningful reforms with
regard to freedom rights of journalists and media self-regulations, Kazakh administration
remained subjugate and disallowed media outlets and journalists.
The todays development fails to reflect hopes for a better future: the Internet is under
control, government blocks opposition websites, and media faces constant closure, and libel
continues to remain a criminal offense, torture of journalists, implication and imprisonment
further deteriorates human rights reforms.
Commitments in Madrid Summit
The OSCE Madrid summit held, in November 2007, offered an opportunity to the
Kazakhstan to chair the OSCE in the year 2010. During the proceedings the Kazakhstan
Foreign Affairs Minister, Marat Tazhin, in his speech offered the plans for the nations
contribution to democratic reforms. He affirmed that his country would implement the
essential measures to bring key political reformations in the press and media, encourage the
political partnerships and a fair election process focusing to introduce advanced democratic
reforms for redress of the civil and political rights. The commitments popular as Madrid
Commitments packed into a charter of reforms and modifications under the title National
Human Rights Action Plan of Kazakhstans from 2009 -2012 received approval in 2008 and
endorsed by the President Nazarbayev in early months of 2009. These plans presented the
new law on elections, press and media, and freedom of political parties with an aim to honor

the Madrid Commitments and the amendments contained several recommendations offered
by NGOs, Freedom House, Kazakh human rights organizations, media advocacy groups, as
well as the OSCE.2
Elections Process
According to Kazakhstan parliamentary group, the new modifications on the electoral
procedures would offer an opportunity for a multiple party functioning in Parliament from the
beginning of next elections. In such a case, where exists single political party, which fulfills
the eight percent criteria to enter the Kazakh Parliament, the person fulfilling the criteria of
minimum votes, irrespective of the votes percentage held, would be also entitled to sit in the
legislative assembly. The Kazakhstan government extended time limit for registration of the
party registration from three to five months after the unanimous decision arrived from the
debate in the parliament. The modifications stated that the press and media would offer equal
coverage to all parties and candidates belonging to the opposition, as well as ruling parties
and foreign media will not require any prerequisite qualification in monitoring elections.3
Over years, human rights defenders protested that Kazakhstan electoral democracy had been
a subject of controversy and merely an eye wash because fairness of electoral procedure has
never been seen in actual practice. The Freedom House argued that, all municipal and
parliamentary elections from 1999 till today continues witness election scandals and
demonstrates government failure to provide free and fair elections.4 The opposition parties
raised a protest, ineffectively, against the electoral verdicts while the Kazakh ruling party
overlooked the OSCE uncovering that elections held in the country violates features of the
legal elections framework.
2

Embassy of Kazakhstan 2010, News Bulletin of the Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan. Kazakhstans
2009 Political Reform: Implementation of Madrid Commitments. News bulletin 25. June 1.
3

McDermott, R 2012, Kazakhstans 2011 Military Doctrine and Regional Security Beyond 2014, CACI
Analyst, June 13.
4

Dave, B 2010, Nations in Transit 2010, Kazakhstan. Washington, D.C.:Freedom House, pp.250- 270.

From 2005-2006, the nation observed a spate of violence in politics. The suspected
killing of Zamanbek Nurkadilov, a leader of the opposition party For a Fair Kazakhstan,
and the brutal murder of Altynbek Sarsenbayev, chief of the opposition party Nagyz Ak Zhol,
reflected the nations disturbing behavior toward political instability.5 The amendments in
constitution adopted in May2007 eliminated tenure limits for the President Nazarbayev,
enabling to occupy lifelong presidency, and restored the single party mandate election system
with the proportionate representation mechanism on the basis of a party list. The election held
in 2007 strengthened the power of the president, when president Nazarbayev removed the last
traces of independent functioning of parliament and included opponents in his own party.6
The parliament elections that took place in August under this legislation created a ruling of a
single party that included ministers only from the ruling party of the president, whilst none of
the party from opposition succeeded the eight percent criteria to make representation in the
Parliament. The United States Electoral Department reports that all 500 cases filed by
members from opposition parties for alleged violations of fair elections were either denied or
dismissed. After a year when the Kazakhstan Foreign Affairs Minister offered the Madrid
Commitments scholars observed the failure of government to bring democratic changes in
year 2008 in spite of repeated assurances.7
The OSCE and Freedom House sharply condemned the law on the election procedures
observing that suggestions offered for implementing reformations have completely been
disrespected. The elections to the Peoples Assembly, which is the upper house of the
5

Freedom House 2007, Freedom in the World 2007. Kazakhstan, Washington D.C.: Freedom House, at
http://www.freedomhouse.org/report/freedomworld/2007/kazakhstan?page=22&year=2007&country=7204
(accessed May 2, 2013)
6

Freedom House 2008, Freedom in the World 2008, Kazakhstan, Washington D.C.: Freedom House at
http://www.freedomhouse.org/inc/content/pubs/fiw/inc_country_detail.cfm?year=2008&country=7421&pf
(accessed May 2, 2013)
7

Freedom House 2009, Freedom in the World 2009, Kazakhstan, Washington, D.C.: Freedom House at
http://lib.ohchr.org/HRBodies/UPR/Documents/Session7/KZ/FH_UPR_KAZ_S07_2010_FreedomHouse_Anne
x1.pdf (accessed May 2, 2013)

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parliament established a legislative body lack of representation by opposition. The electoral


process for entry to the upper house of parliament consummated without involving members
from opposition; a critical aspect further restricting the activities of oppositions parties.8 The
legislation continued allowing the selection of ten members from the Peoples Assembly to
the lower house of the Parliament (Majilis), which, in the opinion of the Freedom House,
negates the Requirements of the Copenhagen Board on the Human Dimension of the
OSCE,9 which favors that all the seats in one of the houses of parliament, should be available
for candidates during the parliamentary election.10 The law continues to limit the electoral
rights by disallowing member with earlier criminal history to work in the public offices,
which further discourages active participation; as the members invariably also have fears of
false implication in criminal cases.
The amendments which say that the next party obtaining highest percentage of votes
will receive seats in the assembly, in case if a single party meets the eight percent criteria and
can open the door for authorized opposition party to sit in parliament and establish the
delusion of a multiple party system.
However, the new developments in the electoral process have not been studied since
there have been no assembly elections under the new reformed legislation. The next
legislative assembly elections will take place in 2013, and it seems that the Kazakh
government has changed their decision for the monitoring of elections by OSCE. After
disallowing complete access for observing the election procedure during the past elections,

US Department of State 2009, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, 2009 Country reports on
human rights and practices, 2009 Human Rights Report: Kazakhstan, at
http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2009/sca/136088.htm (accessed May 3, 2013)
9

Dimitrova, A and Pridham, G 2004, "International Actors and Democracy Promotion in Central Europe: The
Integration Model and Its Limits." Democratization 11, no. 5, pp. 92-110.
10

Dave, B 2010, Nations in Transit 2010, Kazakhstan. Washington, D.C.:Freedom House, pp.250- 270.

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this time Kazakhstan government has extended courtesy to OSCE experts to monitor the
2013 elections.11
Involvement of Political Parties
Astana took the initiative towards bringing election legislation reforms emphasizing to
ease the registration process of political parties and increase their involvement in the political
participation. The amendments have decreased the prerequisites for registration of a political
party. The limit of members essential for registration in the region and Oblast declined from
over 1,200 to 650 and the countrywide number reduced from 60,000 to 45,000. The time
limit for registration also received an extension after the decision arrived in constituent
conference. According to the Freedom House statements, the new reforms pave the way for
the nation to support and fund activity of several political affiliations.12 In spite of these
reforms, there had been little noticeable improvements in the situation. Registration
prerequisites of political parties continued to be tough, and insiders maintain that reforms
were minimal and could not generate essential outcomes. Some unreasonable legal provisions
still continues, which have failed to simplify the procedure of registration. The new
provisions demand personal data about the party members, for examples, birth place, and date
of birth, employment details, and permanent place of residence, which prevents many people
to join political affiliations.
The law continues forbidding parties on the basis of ethnic origin, gender, race and
religion and only twelve parties have been successful in receiving registration so far. Besides,
members encounter various restrictions, for example, rights of working in public offices for a
ten year tenure and party affiliation conditions, and a precondition permitting the Peoples
11

Davidson, D 2001, former Deputy US Representative to the OSCE in Vienna (2001-2004), and former head of
OSCE mission in Bosnia-Herzegovina (2004-2008), and currently Special Envoy for Holocaust issues from
State Department.
12

Blank, S 2007, Human Rights in Kazakhstan , McArthur Professor of National Security, Strategic Studies
Institute, US Army War College.

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Assembly to select ten out of the one hundred seven members of the lower house of the
legislative assembly (Mazhilis).13 The Freedom House maintains President Nazarbayev and
his ruling party has been holding full command over the nations politics since 2009, and use
long term dictatorship policies, for instance, random arrests, politically motivated
persecutions, and restrictive new laws. Significantly the most striking incident of political
detainment refers to famous activist of human rights, the director of International Bureau for
Human Rights Reforms, Yevgeniy Zhovtis.14 In the year October 2009, court announced a
four year imprisonment on charges of manslaughter, despite a trial contained a bundle of
procedural violations. The US State Department 2009, in its Human Rights statement,
reported that United Nations condemned the prosecution that violates international law
claiming that the imprisonment of Yevgeniy Zhovtis was a political conspiracy, and imposed
sentence amounted to political victimization to suppress the most vocal criticism against
government in the advancement of the president ambition to chair the OSCE.15
Press and Media
One of the critical suppressive areas, which continue till today in the nation, is the
press and media independence, where the reforms could not render a meaningful and
significant impact on the freedom of journalists. However, the foreign media have noticed
some positive changes under taken by the Kazakh administration, such as the liberalizing
rights for journalists and assuring freedom of the media. Moreover, the government also
minimized the process that leads to re-registration of media and press agencies, and
13

US Department of State 2009, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, 2009 Country reports on
human rights and practices, 2009 Human Rights Report: Kazakhstan, at
http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2009/sca/136088.htm
(accessed May 5, 2013)
14

Greenhill, B 2010, "The Company You Keep: International Socialization and the Diffusion of the Human
Rights Norms, International Studies Quarterly 54, no. 1, pp. 128-141.
15

Hopmann, Terrence, P 1999, "Building Security in Post-Cold War The OSCE and US Foreign Policy."
Peaceworks. United States Institute for Peace 3, pp. 1-72

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eliminated the registration procedure for media advertising and broadcasting through their
websites.16 Journalists were no longer required to seek permission for carrying cameras and
other electronic equipment during conferences/interviews, and seizure of anti-government
newspaper reports was possible only with administrative approvals. These amendments and
reforms also enable the media to file a complaint in court if the government refuses to part
with information, which is in the interest of Kazakh citizens.
The government of Kazakhstan exercises its power through supporters of broadcasting
stations. Harassment and threats continued against media journalists who criticized the
government and the president, and the continuation of criminal offenses for defamation
established a critical situation of fear in which media journalists faced the continual threat of
legal proceedings and threats to their lives.17
Media journalists constantly faced financial penalties, asked to compensate a large
sum of money for purportedly offending the administrators including a threat to close and
seize their bank accounts. When Madrid Summit was approaching near, Kazakhstan
government thought of enhancing the liberal rules for the media, but the administrators
intervened and tightened their control over the media. Since, broadcasting media had to
comply with new regulations and registration procedures, most of the media became under
the control of the government or surrendered themselves to the ruling party and other vested
interest groups.18

16

Human Rights Watch 2009, Kazakhstan: improve human rights record. Changes needed for upcoming OSCE
leadership role. New York:Human Rights Watch at http://www.hrw.org/en/news/2009/05/19/kazakhstanimprove-human-rights-record (accessed May 2, 2013)
17

Soloyvov, D 2010, Rights group raps Kazakh record before OSCE summit, Reuters, at
http://www.reuters.com/article/2010/11/30/osce-rights idUSLDE6AT0BA20101130 (accessed May 2, 2013)
18

Freedom House 2009, Freedom in the World 2009, Kazakhstan, Washington, D.C.: Freedom House at
http://lib.ohchr.org/HRBodies/UPR/Documents/Session7/KZ/FH_UPR_KAZ_S07_2010_FreedomHouse_Anne
x1.pdf (accessed May 2, 2013)

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The human rights activists carefully observed the amendments to the legislation on
media. Reporters from several countries argue that the government reacted to protests from
international agencies by assuring to reform its legislation on the media in equal level to
international norms, but no significant changes have occurred so far.19 The Freedom House
holds the same opinion, which advocates that although the government has lifted restrictions
on the media and eliminated excessive registration formalities for media outlets, it imposed
several restrictions on legislation to control the Internet. The defenders of human rights argue
independent broadcast media continued to encounter humiliation and administrators
threatened to close down media operations while censorship on media prevailed widely. The
chief of Kazakh media watchdog Adil Soz, Tamara Kaleeva, acknowledged that despite the
reforms were more and less superficial, they were the beginning of amendments in past
several years, which would not deteriorate the current position of journalists or the press.20
Overall, Human Rights Watch considered the amendments in legislation to benefit the media
and political parties, and elections as more superficial and eye wash than actual. The
deterioration of human rights in Kazakhstan shows that nations President has been extremely
active as OSCE chairman, but rather took few significant initiatives to enhance human rights
reforms in his own country. Kazakhstan could have easily portrayed the OSCE by
demonstrating as an example, but rather allowed its human rights reforms deteriorate.21
5. Theoretical Framework

19

Joanna Lillis 2010, Bill to Boost Nazarbayevs Powers in Kazakhstan Remains Theoretically Alive,
Eurasianet, June 9.
20

James Roberts and Ariel Cohen 2012, How More Economic Freedom Will Attract Investment To Kazakhstan
And Central Asia Analysis, The Heritage Foundation, June 27.
21

Dimitrova, A and Pridham, G 2004, "International Actors and Democracy Promotion in Central Europe: The
Integration Model and Its Limits." Democratization 11, no. 5, pp. 92-110.

15

This section deals with the theoretical framework consisting of two conceptual
hypotheses.
Hypothesis 1: Internal Socialization
Hypothesis number one is on the basis of the international socialization and second
hypothesis grounds on democracy from outside-in. The first hypothesis rests on
socialization theory, which champions that members participation with prominent
international organizations can transform the attitude of member nation, hence offers an
opportunity for a democratic transition and credible reinforcement. In simple words, when a
member nation receives an opportunity to interact with its peers such as other members
belonging to the same organization, the member receives a significant opportunity to embrace
democratic laws and adopt them in his/her nation with the purpose of achieving beneficial
reforms such as economic progress for enhancing human rights. To be more precise, based on
the reasoning social interaction theories, communication among elite nations can serve an
effective tool for extracting their help for economic and political benefits (for example,
NATO and EU). The hypothesis will also test whether socialization in the case of OSCE
helps in bringing reforms in Kazakhstan because till now studies demonstrate that
socialization has not been effective in the example of the OSCE, because of two key reasons.
Firstly, it differs from EU and NATO because, in European Union and NATO, the interaction
among nations is strongly knitted, whereas the OSCE does not possess institutional structure
suited for such interaction. Even if there is the likelihood, the interaction will confine to
senior diplomats, who do not have involvement in formulating nations policies hence they
cannot influence economic policies. Second, the OSCE is an extremely diversified body, and
it demonstrates clear political distinction between the EU bloc favored by United States and
the former USSR states which have formed an assembly under the CIS bloc. Besides, the
European Union bloc is the key dominating force within the OSCE, whilst the CIS states

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represent for objecting and opposing the motions whenever Russia initiates such pressure on
the OSCE. Hence, the purpose of research is to argue that social interaction theory works
effectively when it includes nations having same ideology and exchanges similar views on
the political structure; thus allowing an efficient assimilation of the international standards
domestically.
Hypothesis 2: democracy from outside-in.
The second hypothesis will test the role of the IOs in the advancement of
democracy.22 This hypothesis grounds on a theory of Pevehouse, who formulates inside out
hypothesis of democracy and hypothesizes inside out democracy can change the attitude of
the member nations to the degree of leading to the diluting or even eliminating dictatorship
regimes. Pevehouse argues that two key factors drive to process of democratization, first is
the membership that contributes commitment to the authoritative states who suspects of
losing their power in the course of transition, and secondly social interaction theory of
socialization that can assist members in instilling values for consistent democratic processes.
According to Pevehouse at the state level IOs can strengthen transitions to democracy by
inspiring member states to work effectively for political liberalization; hence organizations
such as OSCE can exercise their power by applying external pressures in many ways. They
can publically condemn, by establishing economic difficulties such as withdrawal of
economic concessions and reliefs, as well as, by applying diplomatic pressure and
international isolation with an aim to delegitimize authoritarian regimes.
6. Methodology
This section explores the method of research that researcher intends to use in this
paper. There are many ways to classify the research methods, but the general difference exists
between quantitative and qualitative approaches. Qualitative research method by definition is
22

Jon, C 2002, Democracy from Outside-In? International organizations and Democratization, International
Organizations, 56, p. 3

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any type of research, which generates results that are not possible to achieve by adopting
statistical methods or through other ways of quantification. In stark contrast, quantitative
research method follows measurable characteristics with the help of structured questions such
as questionnaire, and a formalized process of data collection.
Qualitative Research methods
Myers (1997) explained that in the field of social science the qualitative research
method was created to help researchers in a study of cultural, as well as social phenomena.
Besides, it also assists researchers in understanding and explaining the world from the point
of view of participants. Qualitative research includes information collection, observation and
interpretation of data, and sources of data can be extracted from texts and documents,
interviews, observation of participants, and the researchers own reactions and impressions.
Qualitative research methods are commonly noticeable in several fields and disciplines, and
prime motivation for conducting qualitative research is to find if there exists something that
differentiates humans from the natural activities of the world. The researchers commonly
adopt qualitative research method with an objective to analyze a phenomenon from the point
of view of the respondents, but its institutional and social context often lose its significance
when quantification of textual data occurs.
Quantitative Research methods
In opposite to qualitative research methods, the quantitative research methods by
definition are for studying natural phenomena from the perspective of natural sciences. The
quantitative research includes different approaches of survey techniques, formal methods (for
example, econometrics), and numerical calculations e.g. mathematical models.23 It stands
that, after the collection of data from the questionnaire, the collected data will pass through
the process of conversion into related statistical figures that would be computed to produce
23

Myers, M 1997, Critical Ethnography in Information Systems, in A.S. Lee, J. Liebenau, and J. I. DeGross
(Eds.) Information Systems andQualitative Research, London: Chapman and Hall, pp. 278-298

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various tables with numbers by software like Microsoft Office Excel, which have unique
meanings. Both of research methods contain negative and positive features, and it is difficult
to predict which one is comparably better than the other. Although many researchers adopt
either quantitative or qualitative research method, but still many researchers emphasize on
adopting one or more research techniques in their work.
The researcher intends to use both the quantitative and qualitative data for this work
after analyzing the distinctive characteristics of two research techniques while undergoing
through literature review of the research. The quantitative research will be by studying
extensive literature from various journals, articles, reports as well as information from media,
which helps to establish understanding the purpose of study, and thus it would be possible to
arrive at some decisions. In respect of qualitative research, the researcher prefers to perform a
survey and gathers data by distributing a questionnaire to various bodies such as NGOs,
Freedom House, Kazakh human rights defenders, and media advocacy group. The researcher
also intends to contact members from opposition parties such as For a Fair Kazakhstan,
Nagyz Ak Zhol, Kazakhstans International Bureau for Human Rights, and Kazakh media
watchdog Adil Soz in order to find a correct picture of the current situation. The
questionnaire will enable to ascertain the degree of success achieved by Kazakhstan in
fulfillment of pledges made to OSCE for bringing human rights reforms.

7. Ethical considerations
During the surveys, it is highly essential to offer liberty to participants for voluntarily
participation in the questionnaires, by maintaining a high level of anonymity and
confidentiality. Besides, the researcher also restricts to declare any subjective conclusions or
assumptions
8. Limitations of Research

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As far as concerning limitations, there is undoubtedly a contradictory issue relating to


procedural working of OSCE because of structural weaknesses and limitations, which may
hamper in the collection of the data in this research. Although Kazakhstan president and his
ruling party emphasize that the nation has achieved success in bringing human rights reforms,
but freedom of media, recognition of opposition parties in parliament and fair and free
electoral process are far from sight. The voices are silent; a fear prevails in the minds of
people as such citizens are not open to express their opinion freely would be a challenge for
the researcher to bring a clearer picture of human rights reforms in Kazakhstan. As observed
from above, the OSCE is not a recognized body, and there exists no specific charter of
obligations that a nation should comply so as to become a member of this regional
organization. In turn, such structural makes its deficit of punish and reward mechanism even
much significant. Moreover, the OSCE is devoid of credible advantages because there is no
mechanism of punishment in case of non compliance of standards set by OSCE. In fact, all
these weaknesses of the OSCE will be a challenge in this research because human rights
reforms in Kazakhstan has become a far from reality, and situation of human rights reforms
would never improve until a complete structure of democratization establishes in Kazakhstan.
The current situation in Kazakh shows that despite pledges in Madrid Commitments of 2007
and Chair of OSCE in 2012, the nation has failed to adopt democracy, but such a change
would be possible only if the Kazakhstan overthrow its military regime.
9. Time Table
May 2013: Submit the research proposal.
June 2013: Expanding the in-depth study the topic by focusing on the primary sources.
July 2013: Interviews with NGO, journalists, human rights activists and a possible trip to
Astana.
August 2013: Develop findings for the first draft of the thesis.

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September 2013: To further conduct interviews if still remain doubtful issues.


October 2013: Analysis of findings, arguments development and proceed with the final
dissertation.
10. Chapter Outline
Abstract
1. Introduction
2. Human Rights Reforms in Kazakhstan
2.1. Introduction
2.2. Literature Review
2.3. Madrid Commitments
2.4. Political Parties
2.5 Elections
2.6 Media
3. Theoretical Framework
3.1 Process of Socialization
3.2. No socialization in OSCE
3.3. Inside-out Democracy
4. The Limitations of the OSCE
4.1. Introduction
4.2. Why OSCE does not include EU
4.3. No, Carrot and Stick Based Decision
4.4. Fall of Communism, still a dream of Kazakhstan
5. Kazakhstan Rich in Natural Resources but Poor in Democracy
5.1. The Natural Resources
5.2. The Geo Strategic Factor

21

5.3. The Influence of Russia


5.4. The Authoritarian Rule and Weak Opposition in Kazakhstan
6. The Future of Democracy
6.1. Human Rights Records in the last Two Decades
6.2. Compromise for Russias Sake
7. Conclusion

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