MONITORING OF POLITICAL PERSECUTION IN THE REPUBLIC OF KAZAKHSTAN FROM NOVEMBER 1 TO NOVEMBER 30, 2021

On November 1, in Taraz, Bagdat Baktybaev, who is currently detained in the penitentiary institution ZD-158/2 under Article 405, Part 1/2 and Article 296 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan, swallowed nails as a protest against the illegitimate verdict.  During one month he has received 8 penalties from the administration of the colony and he was placed in a punitive isolation cell[1].

November 1, Balkhash city, Aydar Syzdykov, Article 131 part 2 of the Criminal Code of the RK, Judge Zhandildina A. H. held a court session in breach of the legislation without the defendant Syzdykov A., who was not invited to take part in the session. The plaintiff Abdikarimova A.K. dropped the suit and has no complaints against him[2]. But Aidar Syzdykov continues to be persecuted by other employees of the pre-trial detention facility EC-166/1 in Nur-Sultan (the place where Dulat Agadil was killed earlier) for the publication of cruel treatment and torture.

On November 1, in Almaty, a group of activists and public figures during a press conference initiated the establishment of a committee to protect Aron Atabek.  In particular, the committee intends to seek a review of the dissident’s case and an independent review of the Shanyrak events by filing complaints to an international court[3].

On November 1, in Kuryk village, Mangistau region, the akimat of the Karakiyanskiy region refused to conduct a peaceful picket in response to the notification made by civic activist Bekkali Tanashov. The reason for the refusal was that the information in the activist’s notification was incomplete[4].

On November 1, in Nur-Sultan, by court order, Insenova Dilnar was sentenced to a fine of 7,292.5 tenge under Article 434-2, Part 1 of the Administrative Offences Code of the RK for failure to comply with the legitimate demands of the officer protecting public order. The grounds were the violation in Nur-Sultan city at Mangilik-El 57A, Insenova Dilnar put an A4 sheet on the ground, trampled it underfoot and did not pick it up.

On November 2, in Almaty, human rights defenders Bakhytzhan Toregozhina, Galym Ageleuov and Elena Semenova demanded the return of courts offline. Signatures started being collected, a statement from human rights activists stated that online processes «are turning into manipulative games», citizens «do not realize what they are being judged for»,and the reference to the pandemic has actually become «a cover for limiting public and political life in the country»[5].

On November 2, in Shymkent city, activist Nurzhan Abildaev received 10 days of arrest, activists Yerlan Faizullaev and Zhanmurat Ashtaev received 5 days of administrative arrest under Article 667 (insubordination against a lawful instruction or request of an officer) of the Administrative Offences Code and Article 434 (disorderly conduct) of the Administrative Offences Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan[6].

On November 2, in Aktobe, Ainagul Tabetova was found guilty of committing an offense under Article 488, Part 12 of the Administrative Offences Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan and was sentenced to a fine in the amount of 204,190 tenge. The reason was a call for peaceful protest posted on her social media page[7].

On November 3, in Pavlodar, Aset Abishev has reported that the police have used force against him, and as a result, he has suffered an injury to his hand. On his Facebook page, Aset Abishev said that an ambulance has arrived and took him to City Hospital No. 1, where a bandage have been applied to his hand and wrist. He was told at the hospital that his bones remained intact[8].

On November 3, the international non-governmental organization Reporters without Borders presented the 2021 World Press Freedom Index: Kazakhstan ranks 155th out of 180 countries. One step up on freedom of speech is Turkey. It ranks 153rd; Uzbekistan and Belarus come after Kazakhstan[9].

On November 3, since the beginning of 2021, the Kazakhstani Foundation for Protection of Freedom of Speech Adil Soz has documented 77 cases resulted impediment to journalists in their professional activities, seven detentions of media workers, 16 attacks, two cases of surveillance, and 30 cases of threats[10].

On November 3, in Almaty, Shegebekuly Nurtai, was arrested for 15 days under Article 488, Part 6 of the Administrative Offences Code of the RK on the grounds of participation in an unauthorized picket on October 5. An activist was in front of the Intercontinental Hotel as part of a group of people holding sheets of paper with images of political prisoners and the words “Bostandyk! Freedom!”[11].

On November 4, in Almaty, human rights activists Toregozhina and Ageleuov sued the Akimat for their refusal to hold a peaceful march on November 20 in Almaty. According to the Akimat, the reason for the refusal was the prohibition of the chief sanitary doctor of Almaty, Bekshin[12].

On November 4, in Nur-Sultan, Aibek Sabitov filed a suit against the General Prosecutor’s Office regarding the provision of two judgments of the Yessil court on the prohibition of the DCK and the Koshe partiyasy, the suit against the General Prosecutor’s Office was rejected because it does not cause any legal effects related to public-law disputes (which do not result in an administrative action), thus the General Prosecutor’s Office is not a party to relations regulated by the Administrative Procedural and Process-Related Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

November 4, Almaty, Temirlan Ensebek became a participant of the international Marathon of letters organized by the human rights organization Amnesty International.  People from all over the world write thousands of letters to Kazakhstan’s Minister of Internal Affairs Turgymbaev demanding to dismiss the case against Temirlan. The Marathon of Letters is an action where millions of people from around the world write letters to the head of the Interior Ministry and the authorities of the country to release or stop the persecution of those whose rights are being violated[13].


On November 5, Almaty, a group of activists filed a legal claim to the court demanding to overturn the decision of the Yessil District Court of the capital to ban the movement Koshe partiyasy. The complaint was filed by the lawyer Shynkuat Baizhanov on the basis of a power of attorney from civic activists Zhumaniyazova N., Aspaniyarova D., Dzhaukerova G., Baimagambetova D.., Klyshev K., Begimbetov A. and Rakhimzhanov N. [14].

On November 6, in Almaty, human rights activists Toregozhina and Ageleuov, again submitted an application to hold a march on December 11 «Rights and Freedoms for All! No Discrimination! », dedicated to International Human Rights Day on December 10[15].

On November 7, in Shymkent, Ashtayev Zhanmurat, Article 380, Part 1 of the Criminal Code of the RK, upon the expiration of the term of his administrative arrest, was again detained for 72 hours pending the selection of measures of restraint in a political criminal case under Article 380, Part 1 (violence against a representative of authority) of the Criminal Code of the RK[16].

On November 7, in Almaty, the Almaty Police Department banned the “No to recycling fee” rally because the notification of civic activist M. Turymbetov did not comply with the law on peaceful assemblies[17].

On November 8, in Almaty, political prisoners Noyan Rakhimzhanov, Ulasbek Akhmetov, and Askhat Zheksebayev wrote a letter of appeal to the President of the European Parliament, the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and the Heads of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Subcommittee on Human Rights of the European Parliament on discrimination of politically persecuted individuals in Kazakhstan by EU diplomats in the city of Nur-Sultan[18].

On November 10, in Pavlodar, the Department for Migration Services of the Police Department revoked the residence permit of of Smayil Abilkasym, a Chinese citizen of Uighur origin, and now he faces removal to China. The reason was that the Department for Migration Services of the Police Department of Nur-Sultan city had issued a permanent residence permit in Kazakhstan “on the basis of an expired visa”[19].

On November 11, in Almaty, the special appeal of political activist Zhanbolat Mamay and his wife, journalist Inga Imanbay, to cancel the penalty for a failure to comply with the judgment, was not satisfied by the judicial panel of the city court. Earlier the court ordered to reimburse legal expenses of 438,201 tenge from each of the spouses in favor of the Deputy Chairman of the Nur-Otan party Bauyrzhan Baybek, as well as 75,114 tenge for the psychological and philological forensic examination[20].

On November 12, in Almaty, Aset Abishev submitted a request to the Supreme Court of Kazakhstan asking to provide a secret and politically motivated decision of the Yessil court of March 13, 2018 to ban the opposition movement DCK, since he himself had been earlier convicted of “participation” in the DCK[21].

On November 13, in Kyzylorda region, workers of the Araltuz Company, who succeeded in getting a pay raise as a result of the strike in September, said that after the protests the management began to use repressive measures and now is gradually getting rid of the “blacklisted” employees[22].

On November 15, in Almaty, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan answered “No” to the question of a human rights activist: “Does Kazakhstan have intentions to join the Council of Europe?”[23]

On November 15, in Aktau, the Akimat refused to allow Ulbolsyn Turdieva to conduct a peaceful protest on November 20, 2021 based on the fact that incomplete information was provided[24].

On November 16, in Almaty, Court No. 2 of the Auezov District satisfied the submission of a private enforcement officer and suspended the driver’s license of Zhanbolat Mamay as well as temporarily prohibited the issuance of a new driver’s license to Inga Imanbay. The reason was that they refused to execute the court judgment on the suit against the deputy chairman of the Nur-Otan party, B. Baibek[25].

November 16, as reported by the group moderator Daniyar Khasenov, since July 30 of the last year, the human rights monitoring group “Activists Not Extremists” registered 148 refusals to hold peaceful protests, marches and solitary pickets in 22 cities and settlements of Kazakhstan, out of which 118 refusals have been registered this year[26].

On November 17, in Almaty, human rights activist Bakhytzhan Toregozhina filed a lawsuit against the Akim of Almaty B. Sagintayev for repeated refusals to hold a peaceful march based on politically charged reasons[27].

On November 17, in Almaty, Alnur Ilyashev received a reply from the Ministry of Justice of Kazakhstan, which acknowledged receipt of the list of politically persecuted persons submitted by the member of the European Parliament Róża Thun. This list was forwarded to the bodies that directly prosecuted the citizens. This was followed by the standard wording: «The judicial decision has been handed down in respect of you».[28].

On November 17, in Uralsk, the Akimat refused to hold a rally and a picket on November 20, 2021 because of the planned cultural event on this day, devoted to the 30th anniversary of the Independence of the Republic of Kazakhstan[29].

On November 18, Okhasov Orynbay in Uralsk was sentenced to 1 year of restriction of liberty, 1 year of prohibition of social and political activity and a 3-year ban on the use of social networks under Article 40, Part 2 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan. 10 MCI (29,170 tenge) was recovered from him to the Victims’ Compensation Fund. Also he was sentenced to 100 hours of social work. The reason for the decision was his personal participation in rallies and actions held by the DCK and Koshe partiyasy, posting appeals to participate in the protests in social networks[30].

On November 18, in Nur-Sultan, Tastayev Nursultan, received via WhatsApp messenger a lawsuit from the PF Ar-Bedel for “prohibition of actions that violate rights and create a risk of future harm” and later removal of critical posts on Facebook [31].

On November 19, in Almaty, Alnur Ilyashev received another denial to approve the rally. The letter of explanation states that «peaceful assembly shall not begin earlier than 9 am and end later than 8 pm local time of the administrative-territorial unit on the day of the peaceful assembly». Another reason for the denial is that Ilyashev was sentenced by the court to 3 years of restriction of liberty with a ban for up to 5 years on engaging in social activities, according to the court verdict of June 22, 2020[32].

On November 19, the international human rights organization Human Rights Watch (HRW) called on the European Union to press Central Asian governments to end rights violations and engage in meaningful reforms[33].

On November 19, Aruzhan Abylkas, a schoolgirl from the Nazarbayev Intellectual School (NIS) in Pavlodar, presented an exhibition about political prisoners in Kazakhstan. The schoolgirl was subjected to intimidation and harassment before the exhibition[34].

November 20, politically motivated persecution of civic activists prior to and on the day of the nationwide rally on November 20. Illegal detention and imprisonment at local police stations, without providing activists with a public defender, a meeting with a prosecutor on duty, and the right to make one phone call[35].

November 20, a complete name list of civic activists subjected to political persecution in connection with peaceful protests on November 20, 2021[36].

On November 22, in Almaty, Amirov Yerulan’s arrest for forensic psychiatric examination was extended again! Yerulan is in the SI-18 facility, where a council of 5-6 psychiatrists comes twice a week to examine him. No treatment is provided (according to the lawyer). He has been under arrest for more than 7 months and has also been in a psychiatric hospital in Aktas village (Talgar city) for more than 2.5 months as part of this criminal case[37].

November 23, Almaty, according to information from human rights activist Bakhytzhan Toregozhina there are more than 525 people in Kazakhstan prosecuted under different articles for their convictions and calls for democratic reforms, 76 people have been convicted under Article 405 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan, 12 people remain in detention[38].

November 23, Nur-Sultan, Aybek Sabitov, Judge Mazhitov R. of the Yessil District Court refused to issue his decisions of 13.03.2018 and 19.05.2020 regarding the prohibition of the DCK and Kosher parties, because A. Sabitov, convicted in 2021, was not a party in the case in 2018 and 2020[39].

November 24, Almaty, Alnur Ilyashev, the court following the application filed by Alnur Ilyashev to be recognized as a person directly subjected to political repression refused to recognize him as a political prisoner[40].

On November 24, in Almaty, the Akimat refused to hold a peaceful protest on December 1, 2021 in response to 34 notifications submitted by Alnur Ilyashev. The reason was that Ilyashev was convicted on June 22, 2020 and could not be the organizer of the rally[41].

Poet, dissident and human rights activist Aron Atabek (Yedigeev) passed away on November 24 in Almaty at the age of 68. After serving 15 years out of 18 years’ sentence under Article 96 and Article 241 of the Criminal Code of the RK, he was released from prison by a court decision on October 1, 2021, “for health reasons” — in connection with “incurable disease” according to Article 75 of the Criminal Code of the RK. The unserved portion of his sentence was commuted to restriction of liberty under probation supervision for one year[42].

On November 25, in Kyzylorda, Baimagambetov Muratbek was sentenced to 5 days of arrest under Article 667, Part 1 of the Administrative Offences Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan for failure to obey the legal demands of the probation officers and police department — he obstructed the performance of their duties.

On November 25, Western human rights activists and researchers demanded an «explanation» from Nur-Sultan after Atabek’s death and called for an international investigation [43].

On November 25, in Almaty, Ilshat Kenzhin, the organizer of the authorized rally on November 27 entitled: “Ensuring the supremacy of law in the justice system of the Republic of Kazakhstan. On the need for radical reform of the judicial system of the RK” cancelled the rally because Mukhtar Ablyazov urged his supporters to endorse the rally[44].

On November 26, in Shymkent city, the local authorities did not allow citizens to hold a memorial ceremony for the late Aron Atabek at the Kasyret memorial. Some of the participants were taken to the Karatau police station, where they had their fingerprints and photos taken, also they were asked to provide an explanatory note. Some people were accused of alcohol abuse and taken to the narcological dispensary for tests[45].

On November 26, in Kuryk village, Mangistau region, Bekkali Tanashov was denied by the Akimat of Karakiyan district to hold a peaceful protest on December 1, 2021 following the submitted notification. The reason for the refusal was the work to improve the square Yntymak which the activist had proposed as a place for a peaceful rally[46].

On November 28, in Almaty, at noon, there was a rally in memory of Aron Atabek, organized by the movement Oyan, Qazaqstan! in front of the monument to Abay. There was a representative of the Akimat Askhat Utegenov, an employee of the Department of Internal Policy of the city, who called the meeting illegal and asked the people to disperse. The action took place and no one was detained [47]. The activists faced threats the next day.

On November 28, two different Kurultai (assemblies) were held in the cities of Almaty and Nur-Sultan, where demands for the immediate release of political prisoners were voiced [48][49].

On November 29, in Almaty, Gulpiya Kazybek, Khalida Akytkhan, Zhamilya Maken, Gauhar Kurmanalieva, Nurzat Yermekbai and Baybolat Kunbolatuly were detained as they came to the Chinese consulate to participate in an indefinite action seeking the release of their relatives from prisons and “re-education camps” in Xinjiang[50].

November 29, Almaty, activists Insenova Dilnar, Imangalieva Kaipzhamal, Valeeva Asyltas were imposed an administrative fine of 87510 tenge on each under Article 488, Part 6 of the Administrative Offences Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan. The reason was illegal participation in an unauthorized picket near the building of the Agency for Financial Regulation of the National Bank of Kazakhstan.

On November 29, Uralsk city, the Akimat refused to hold peaceful assemblies on December 10, 17 and 19, 2021 in response to three notifications submitted by civic activists Mukambetzhanova S., Utebaev B., Yeskendirova M., Azbergenov I. The grounds for refusal were holding cultural and sports events on the above days[51].

On November 29, in Zhanaozen, Mangistau region, Dosekeeva Zhadra was fined administratively in the amount of 61257 tenge under Article 488, Part 3 of the Administrative Offences Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan, the reason for the court decision was a call for a peaceful protest that was posted on the Facebook social network and WhatsApp messenger[52].

On November 30, Almaty, the Akimat refused feminist activists Ospan F., Alban M., and Ungarova M. to hold a Women’s March that was scheduled for March 8, 2022. The reason for the refusal was the “cultural and recreational activities” that have already been scheduled by the Medeu District Akimat on the square named after Ualikhanov[53].

On November 30, in Almaty, an administrative case was opened against Zhanbolat Mamay and Inga Imanbai under Article 669 of the Administrative Offences Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan based on their refusal to remove the film about Baurzhan Baybek, deputy chairman of the Nur-Otan party, from YouTube[54].

On November 30, there were politically motivated persecutions of civic activists Nursultan Tastayev, Aidar Mubarakov, Marat Zhylanbayev, and Aizhan Akisheva by the Ar-Bedel Public Foundation for criticizing the first president[55].

On November 30, in Uralsk, Urazbayev Amangeldy and Eskendirova-Marua, were placed under administrative arrest for 20 days under Article 488, Part 11 of the Administrative Offences Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan. The reason for the trial was that they repeatedly took part in an «unlawful action» within a year[56].

On December 6, the website Kuresker.org made an information graphics of preventive repressions and persecutions of civil activists from September 05 November to 6  December, 2021[57].

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[1]https://bureau.kz/novosti/gvozdi-glotal-no-problem-s-etim-net/

[2]https://www.facebook.com/groups/2613737598955074/posts/2930859037242927/

[3]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31539750.html

[4]https://www.facebook.com/groups/ActivistsNotExtremists/posts/3117774051875190/

[5]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31541295.html

[6]https://www.facebook.com/groups/2613737598955074/posts/2931773967151434/

[7]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31543105.html

[8]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31542722.html

[9]https://www.exclusive.kz/expertiza/daily/126169/?fbclid=IwAR1q7gGkVpJ9k-t1ZsLxzmMssTtSIbJsHuqPHtT7KEboD7ZMVMzOL_8cgJA

[10]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31542026.html?fbclid=IwAR2Fx01gU1YIgCvCITGHJrcej25eTu-KoOPweV2-w0OvJi0Vn0gXG5ZGD9E

[11]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31545855.html

[12]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31545621.html

[13]https://orda.kz/kazahstanec-vpervye-uchastvuet-v-pravozashhitnoj-akcii-marafon-pisem/

[14]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31554970.html

[15]https://www.facebook.com/toregozhina/posts/4819377361408144

[16]https://www.facebook.com/groups/ActivistsNotExtremists/posts/3121644094821519/

[17]https://www.facebook.com/groups/netutilsboru/posts/1362356117495809/

[18]https://www.facebook.com/groups/ActivistsNotExtremists/posts/3122505581402037/

[19]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31556393.html

[20]https://orda.kz/mamaj-vs-bajbek-s-aktivista-vzyshhut-penju-za-neispolnenie-reshenija-suda/

[21]https://www.facebook.com/groups/ActivistsNotExtremists/posts/3125436137775648/

[22]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31559715.html

[23]https://www.facebook.com/toregozhina/posts/4847957018550178

[24]https://t.me/NotExtremists/5635

[25]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31565394.html

[26]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31565623.html

[27]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=umHW1boMdjE

[28]https://www.facebook.com/alnur.ilyashev/posts/10159675749202748

[29]https://t.me/NotExtremists/5665?fbclid=IwAR0_oHzndk87C_WyPBT1IqvfzJkn-KykRlNILTJtCiOTorpG4MknIN6ppt8

[30]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31567726.html

[31]https://www.facebook.com/groups/ActivistsNotExtremists/posts/3130379883947940/

[32]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31570066.html

[33]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/eu-urged-to-address-central-asian-rights-abuses-at-upcoming-ministers-meeting/31569340.html?fbclid=IwAR2YddkDELd8zA2d5zmjvYvpSdVuy4gLOWCTxE10OGJ0SjpAXkl-6uBIJtM

[34]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/kazakhstan-pavlodar-political-prisoners-article/31568861.html?fbclid=IwAR3lVDGSRmp8EklQxKFf8fjMjXEVOrXUhyVfhh4hsfObG2Yt2P6gOyRu2m4

[35]https://www.facebook.com/groups/ActivistsNotExtremists/posts/3138198916499370/

[36]https://www.facebook.com/groups/ActivistsNotExtremists/posts/3134038316915430/

[37]https://www.facebook.com/toregozhina/posts/4871088839570329

[38]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31574450.html

[39]https://www.facebook.com/toregozhina/posts/4874213392591207

[40]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31578002.html

[41]https://t.me/NotExtremists/5850?fbclid=IwAR3aN3YcEHg9IB_lih9XEwRNSEpo4vHtEZSHlHl5yo9prLLjvn2y_N7-Tfo

[42]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31577257.html

[43]https://rus.ozodlik.org/a/31578064.html?fbclid=IwAR36s82tXLS0y9YcD5_6oeRxRtm5FddJfgQV3eSsIK6GtiZQecibCHSkehk

[44]https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=1277825592641172&id=100012412308303

[45]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31580417.html

[46]https://www.facebook.com/groups/ActivistsNotExtremists/posts/3139538873032041

[47]https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=333119988152960

[48]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YfIomnXhND8

[49]https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=939183863671793&id=100027405638705

[50]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31584706.html

[51]https://www.facebook.com/groups/ActivistsNotExtremists/posts/3139445676374694/

[52]https://www.facebook.com/groups/808593333258423/user/100052825281606/

[53]https://orda.kz/feministkam-otkazali-v-provedenii-marsha-i-mitinga-za-prava-zhenshhin-8-marta-v-almaty/

[54]https://orda.kz/na-zhanbolata-mamaja-i-ego-suprugu-zaveli-administrativnye-dela/

[55]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/kazakhstan-ar-bedel-gongo—the-honor-and-dignity-of-the-ex-president/31587975.html

[56]https://rus.azattyq.org/a/31587242.html

[57] http://kuresker.org/archives/4107