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US deny blackmailing Kazakhstan Healthcare Ministry, but attached copy confirms it

25 july 2013, 11:59
0
Photo by Marat Abilov©
Photo by Marat Abilov©
Methadone was not mentioned in the letter of the former U.S. Ambassador to Kazakhstan Richard Hoagland to Kazakhstan Healthcare Minister Salidat Kairbekova, Tengrinews.kz reports citing the U.S. Embassy in Astana.

“A couple years ago Ambassador Hoagland sent a letter to the newly-appointed Minister Kairbekova to congratulate her on the appointment and inform her on his departure. In the letter Ambassador Hoagland also called Minister Kairbekova to continue the existing practices of expansion of programs aimed at treatment and prevention of spread of HIV infections among vulnerable groups of the population, and shared the best global practices in this area with her,” the press-service stated.

Methadone was not mentioned in the letter, the press-service stressed. The Ambassador, however, did write about used of medication assisted therapy.

“Ambassador Hoagland was calling the Minister to continue along the selected path,” the press-service said when Tengrinews.kz asked it to confirm if the former ambassador wrote that that provision of grants from the Global Fund would be challenged if Kazakhstan discontinued the methadone program.

Earlier Tengrinews.kz reported that former U.S. Ambassador to Kazakhstan Richard Hoagland had sent a letter to Kazakhstan Healthcare Minister Salidat Kairbekova. Commenting the letter years later, President of the National Medical Association Aizhan Sadykova said that the United States were pushing Kazakhstan to continue the methadone program.

Head of the Civil Commission for Human Rights group Natalya Shadrina has contacted Tengrinews.kz editorial office and provided a copy of the letter sent by the former U.S. Ambassador to Kazakhstan Richard Hoagland to Kazakhstan Healthcare Minister Salidat Kairbekova.



The letter confirms that the statements made by the Kazakhstan official were far from groundless:
"Reversal of the initial decision to scale-up medication assisted therapy activities in Kazakhstan will ... endanger the approval of any future grants from the Global Fund," U.S. Ambassador Hoagland wrote in the last paragraph.

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