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Statement on the establishment of the Human Rights Alliance for Fundamental Rights

14.01.2022

Due to the tragic events which took place in our country during the first days of 2022, that started as peaceful protests in various regions of the country bringing forward socio-economic and political demands and which ended in violence, assaults, taking over and setting on fire of state buildings, including police stations, strategic objects, including Almaty Airport, buildings with offices of mass media studios, looting and burglary as well as of business venues and objects, while expressing our sincere condolences to the families of the deceased, the undersigned coalitions and human rights organizations have established a Human Rights Alliance in support of fundamental rights and freedoms.

The main goal of the Human Rights Alliance will be to facilitate honest and impartial identification of the timeline and course of protests; to analyze law enforcement actions as well as actions of various groups of protesters, reasons behind peaceful protest turning into violent riots; to ensure respect for fundamental rights during investigation and that all the standards of fair trial are in place; to prevent torture and ill-treatment, to guarantee accountability of perpetrators for committed crimes and offences, to guarantee fair and just prosecution of perpetrators and exoneration of innocent individuals; to clearly distinguish peaceful protesters, including political opposition members and civic activists, from those who committed acts of violence.

In order to achieve this goal, the Human Rights Alliance plans to coordinate the activity of its member coalitions and organizations, including by means of establishing a joint information resource, identifying responsible individuals for every sector, allocation of hotlines for people raising human rights issues, including provision of legal aid and assistance on:

– documenting, collection and processing of information (video, audio, reports of monitors, journalists and witnesses)

– ensuring right to life;

– ensuring right to freedom from torture and ill-treatment;

– ensuring right to a qualified defense lawyer of one’s choosing and a confidential meeting with a lawyer before the first interrogation takes place;

– ensuring right to a call (informing relatives about detainee’s whereabouts);

– ensuring right to access to information and rights of journalists;

as well as ensuring respect of other fundamental rights in relation to these tragic events.

We believe that an objective and impartial investigation of the reasons, establishing all of the circumstances of the events, offering analysis of the actions of the authorities and law-enforcement bodies, as well as participants of the protests along with respect of fundamental rights during investigation and trial may help prevent such tragedies from happening in future.

Coalition of NGOs of Kazakhstan Against Torture

Coalition of the New Generation of Human Rights Defenders

Coalition on Security and Protection of Human Rights Defenders

International Foundation for Protection of Freedom of Speech «Adil Soz»

Kazakhstan International Bureau for Human Rights and Rule of Law

Public Foundation «Ar.Rukh.Khak»

Public Foundation «Liberty»

Public Association «Kadir-Kasiyet»

Public Foundation «Foundation for Development of Parliamentarism in Kazakhstan»

Public Foundation «Yerkindik Qanaty»

Public Foundation «Youth Information Service of Kazakhstan»

January 14, 2022