Expert workshop “Gender-sensitive Approaches to Rehabilitation and Reintegration of women and children returned from the conflict zones” was held in Tashkent.

On November 2-3, 2022, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Regional Office for Central Asia (UNODC ROCA) in cooperation with State Committee on Family and Women Affairs, United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT), UN Women, Counter-terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED) and United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) organized Expert workshop “Gender-sensitive Approaches to Rehabilitation and Reintegration of women and children returned from the conflict zones” in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.

The event brought together over 50 participants representing the State Committee on Family and Women, the Ministry of Support of Mahalla and Older Generation, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Internal Affairs, , Ministry of Public Education, Ministry of Pre-School Education, Ministry of Public Health, General Prosecutors Office, Academy of the General Prosecutors Office, Academy of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, National Centre on Human Rights, Secretariat of the Ombudsman, International Islamic Academy of Uzbekistan, Republican Centre for Social Adaptation of Children, the Institute for Strategic and Regional Studies under the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan, “Istiqboli Avlod” NGO, “Intilish” NGO RIEC, NGO “Barqaror hayot”, and Tashkent State University of Law.   

This expert workshop was aimed at raising awareness of key principles for age- and gender-sensitive rehabilitation and reintegration of returnees based on international standards and global policy frameworks; discussing current and ongoing challenges and needs to increase national capacity in Uzbekistan and provide gender-responsive support to returning citizens, in particular women and children.


In her opening speech, Ozoda Parpiboyeva, First Deputy Head of the State Committee on Family and Women of the Republic of Uzbekistan said: “Our country is carrying out essential reforms to address issues of families, who are in need of social protection, enhancing reforms on provision of individual and targeted work with women in difficult life situations, providing them with social, legal, psychological and financial aid”. 


A number of Uzbek citizens who are estimated to have travelled to Syria and Iraq during the time when the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, hereinafter referred to as ‘Da’esh’) controlled significant parts of the territory of these countries is high (1500 +). Following the collapse of ‘Da’esh’, a process of repatriation of these citizens has started in which the Uzbek Government has opted for an approach aimed at facilitating their effective and inclusive social reintegration adopting a child, family, and rights-based approach. Through five operations since May 2019, Uzbekistan has brought back 531 individuals, of whom 331 children, 125 women and 27 men from conflict zones in North-East Syria, Iraq (Mehr I, II, III and V) and Afghanistan (Mehr IV). Rehabilitation of the returned women and children is based on an Action Plan, the latest version of which was endorsed by the government in May 2021.


Ashita Mittal, UNODC Regional Representative for Central Asia stated: “The urge of the Member States to promote the social reintegration and rehabilitation of returning women and children will refer to integrated strategy of supported countries via mental, psychological adaptation, protection and empowerment of women and children”

Munir Mammadzade, UNICEF Representative in Uzbekistan highlighted: “Last year we launched joint UN Programme for successful reintegration of returnees, and we have number of agencies involved into this process, including UNODC ROCA, UN Women, UNOCT, UNICEF. We are trying to bring all our efforts to help government to increase awareness to have gender responsive community-based reintegration measures, introduce in a systemic way, including protection, social reintegration, through economic recovery, which is very important, as well as social cohesion, resilience building, which is a key to our collective work.”

Analytical work conducted by ‘Barqaror Hayot’ NGO jointly with the State Committee on Family and Women was presented during the workshop. The analysis included assessment of the rehabilitation and reintegration processes, identification of the main priorities and lessons learned, and the best practices from Uzbekistan. 


International experts, such as Dr. Diana Digol, Political Affairs Officer, United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT), Uzbekistan who acted as a moderator of the event, Iman Sayed Taha, Policy Specialist, Peace and Security Section UN Women (New York, USA), Dr. Katherine E. Brown, Reader in Religion and Global Security, University of Birmingham, Head of Research, School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion, Dr. Irina Chernykh, Professor of the Kazakh-German University, Dr. Rustam Azizi, representing Center for Islamic Studies under the President of the Republic of Tajikistan, Natalya Pylypiv, Gender Affairs Officer, UNOCT explored further ways to deepen engagement with civil society in ongoing reintegration and repatriation efforts and developed recommendations (guidance tool) to national organizations based on the workshop discussion for long-term and sustained support to returnees.

UNODC in cooperation with UN Women, CTED and UNOCT created a cooperation platform for international and national organizations to share the experience and build work plans on systematic approaches and the best practices for successful rehabilitation and reintegration of women and children returned from the conflict zones.

UNODC is committed to continuing this important work, to support Member States in safely bringing returnees and their accompanying family members back into their communities, where they belong.   


Текст на русском языке здесь

Recorded video. Day 1.

Recorded video. Day 2.

For further information please contact:  

Arifa Fatikhova 

Communications and External Relations Officer

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) 

Regional Office for Central Asia

Mobile: (+998 93) 505-05-58 | Email: arifa.fatikhova[at]