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    April 27, 2020

    Alnur Ilyashev © Private


    Kazakhstani human rights activist Alnur Ilyashev has been arrested for his publications on social media. His posts criticized the ruling Nur Otan party and its handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. He is being prosecuted for “spreading false information” that harms “interests” during the state of emergency, a crime which carries up to seven years in prison. Alnur Ilyashev is a prisoner of conscience and must be released immediately and unconditionally. 

    Alnur Ilyashev was arrested on 17 April 2020, and is being charged with spreading “false information” that “threatens public order” and causes “substantive harm” to “protected interests of society” during the state of emergency in connection with his critical posts on social media about the ruling Nur Otan party. The police investigator claimed that Alnur Ilyashev’s posts sought to influence public opinion about the “incompetence of the activities of the Nur Otan party” in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and thereby “may lead to negative consequences”. 

    October 11, 2018

    Persons with psychosocial and intellectual disabilities in Kazakhstan face stigmatization and isolation from society and are prevented from exercising their human rights, Amnesty International said today, as it launched a new report calling for change and the respect, protection and fulfilment of human rights.

    “We are like dead souls”: Life without Legal Capacity in Kazakhstan documents how Kazakhstan’s current laws mean thousands of persons with psychosocial and intellectual disabilities have been declared “incapable” by law and put in the care of a guardian (often a close relative). Under this system they cannot exercise their rights and are not able to challenge the decision in court.

    “Once a person is declared ‘incapable’, he or she literally has no legal recourse. They lose the power to make decisions about their own life,” said Heather McGill, Amnesty International’s Researcher on Central Asia.

    February 22, 2018
    Amnesty International publishes State of the World’s Human Rights report for 2017 to 2018 “Last year our world was immersed in crises, with prominent leaders offering us a nightmarish vision of a society blinded by hatred and fear. This emboldened those who promote bigotry, but it inspired far more people to campaign for a more hopeful future,” says Salil Shetty, head of Amnesty International

    The world is reaping the terrifying consequences of hate-filled rhetoric that threatens to normalize massive discrimination against marginalized groups, Amnesty International warned today as it launched its annual assessment of human rights.

    Nevertheless, the organization found that a growing movement of both first-time and seasoned activists campaigning for social justice provides real hope of reversing the slide towards oppression.

    The report, The State of the World’s Human Rights, covers 159 countries and delivers the most comprehensive analysis of the state of human rights in the world today.

    May 20, 2016

    The Kazakhstani authorities must immediately and unconditionally release almost three dozen activists after dramatic wave of arrests, apparently aimed at blocking peaceful demonstrations from going ahead this weekend, Amnesty International said.

    At least 34 activists have been arrested across the country over the past three days, many of them for the “crime” of publicly stating their intention to participate in the peaceful protests, planned for 21 May, or for posting information about them on Facebook and other social media.

    “To prosecute people merely for intending to exercise their human right to peaceful assembly is beyond belief,” said Denis Krivosheev, Amnesty International’s Deputy Programme Director for Europe and Central Asia.

    “It is scandalous that dozens of Kazakhstani citizens should be rounded up simply for sharing the details of a peaceful protest, or for saying that they wish to take part in it. The Kazakhstani authorities must release these people immediately and respect their rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and expression.”

    March 03, 2016

    Authorities in Kazakhstan are failing in their duty to promptly, impartially, and effectively investigate reports of torture and other ill-treatment perpetrated by members of law enforcement agencies and prison staff, Amnesty International said in report published today.

    “The failure to investigate torture and prosecute those responsible leaves victims hopeless and intimidated, reliant on their families and a small band of dedicated civil society activists and lawyers to negotiate the labyrinthine process of appealing against a refusal to investigate a report of torture,” said John Dalhuisen, Director of the Europe and Central Asia Regional Office at Amnesty International.

    In its report, Dead End Justice: Impunity for Torture in Kazakhstan, Amnesty International reveals that while human rights organizations in Kazakhstan receive hundreds of reports of torture and other ill-treatment each year, the fear of reprisal, lack of access to appropriate legal advice, or the assumption that nothing will be done means that few cases are registered, and an even smaller number result in prosecution.

    July 11, 2013

    Amnesty International accused the President of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbaev, of pulling the wool over the eyes of the international community in his government’s promise to eradicate torture and fully investigate the lethal force by police.

    In a report published today, Amnesty International exposes how the security forces act with impunity and how torture in detention centres is rife.

    The report, Old habits: The routine use of torture and other ill-treatment in Kazakhstan, details how at least 15 people were killed and more than 100 seriously injured when security forces used excessive and lethal force to disperse the crowds in protests in Zhanaozen in December 2011. Scores of people were rounded up by security forces and tortured in overcrowded underground police cells.

    Amnesty International is calling on the President to authorize and facilitate an independent international investigation into the use of lethal force by security forces in Zhanaozen in December 2011, as recommended by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay.

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