KAZAKHSTAN INTERNATIONAL BUREAU FOR HUMAN RIGHTS AND RULE OF LAW

Litany of abuses continues, even under EXPO-2017 spotlight

On 9th June 2017 EXPO-2017, a specialised international exhibition, opened with great fanfare in Kazakhstan’s capital, Astana. However, the crackdown on dissenting voices has continued unabated, dashing hopes that the authorities may take some steps to ease pressure on civil society while Kazakhstan is under the international spotlight.

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International Religious Freedom Report for 2016. Kazakhstan

Religious groups the government considered “traditional” reported general acceptance and tolerance by the government. “Nontraditional” religious groups, however, continued to experience heightened scrutiny and prosecution.

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Jehovah’s witnesses in Kazakhstan fear repeat of Russia ban after ‘scary’ crackdown

After operations at its headquarters were suspended last week, Jehovah’s Witnesses in Kazakhstan fear their country’s government is going down the same path as neighboring Russia, where the Christian group was effectively banned earlier this year.

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Journalist and press freedom defender stabbed in Kazakhstan

He had been scheduled to meet with officials from the Lithuanian and German embassies in Astana to discuss his past imprisonment and the case of Zhanbolat Mamay, the editor of the independent newspaper Sayasi kalam/Tribuna, who has been jailed since February.

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Trades unionists have launched an international campaign for the release of Kazakhstan labour activist

Kushakbayev is a trade union safety inspector at Oil Construction Company (OCC), an oilfield service firm based in Mangistau, western Kazakhstan. He is also deputy president of the Confederation of Independent Trade Unions of Kazakhstan, which the government banned last year.

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New constitutional amendments - a false hope for democratisation

Kazakhstan’s parliament recently adopted constitutional amendments that President Nursultan Nazarbayev signed into law on 10th March 2017. The amendments have been described as a step forward in strengthening democratic governance in the country by delegating some presidential powers to the legislature.

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New initiative tracks civic space worldwide, FSU countries among the least free

Among the Central Asian countries, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan are rated as closed, Tajikistan as repressed and Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan as obstructed.

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Special series on threats to civic space in Kazakhstan - part 3: Peaceful assembly

In our final post of the series, we focus on the freedom of peaceful assembly and discuss the latest developments related to the regulation of the right to protest in Kazakhstan.

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Criminal cases for meeting, criticising Muslim Board

Kazakhstan has detained Kuanysh Bashpayev for criticising the state-controlled Muslim Board, and Satimzhan Azatov for meeting Muslims without state permission. Both face criminal charges of "inciting religious hatred or discord", as does atheist Aleksandr Kharlamov facing a possible new trial. Bashpayev's trial opens 14 February.

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Special series on threats to civic space in Kazakhstan - part 2: Expression

In this second part, we focus on the freedom of expression and discuss the latest legal and practical developments related to the regulation of the media, political pressure on media houses, online censorship and attacks on journalists.

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