Kazakhstan: London Embassy picket defends Shanyrak residents

Alma-Ata authorities feel pressure of worldwide protests

London Embassy picket defends Shanyrak residents

Last Thursday, Socialist Party (CWI) members held a picket outside the Kazakhstan Embassy, in London, to protest against recent attacks on shanty town dwellers in the Shanyrak area of Alma-Ata city, in Kazakhstan.

This follows a brutal attack on the Shanyrak residents on 5 April. Police, backed up by ‘rapid response’ riot police, the KNB (former KGB) agents, the City Procurer, fire fighters, and bailiffs, turned up at the Shanyrak district of Alma-Ata city, to destroy the homes of landless residents.

But dozens of women and pensioners, along with members from the Alma-Ata Workers’ Movement and Socialist Resistance (CWI), courageously resisted for hours and eventually saw off the police attacks.

The Alma-Ata City authorities want to destroy the homes of settlers who built living quarters on the outskirts of the city. The authorities want to build ‘entertainment complexes’ and elite flats for Kazakhstan’s ‘new rich’ on the land.

The Kazakhstan Embassy, in London, is opposite the Victoria and Albert Museum, a popular tourist destination, and, therefore, last week’s picket was a high profile protest that embarrassed Embassy officials. Protesters handed in a protest letter to an Embassy representative.

The London protest was reported on Kazakhstan television.

Shanyrak residents said the worldwide protests in their defence jolted the Alma-Ata authorities and, for the moment, are helping to hold back new attacks. The residents thanked all those who have sent protests.

Please continue to send protests to the Mayor of Alma-Ata, demanding:

  • All attempts to evict the resident of Shanyrak are immediately stopped
  • An end to the repression of all activists
  • Alma-Ata city resources to be allocated to build decent homes for Shanyrak residents and all shanty town dwellers
  • An end to political repression of Sotsialisticheskoe soprotivleniye (Socialist Resistance- CWI – in Kazakhstan) activists

Send protest letters and faxes to:

Administration of the City Akim (Mayor)

050000 Republic of Kazakhstan,

Almata

Ploshad Respubliki dom 4,

Akimat, Akimu Imangali Tasmagambetovu

Telephone: +7 3272 716557

Fax: +7 3272 934710

Or email protests, via the Akim’s (Mayor’s) website: www.almaty.kz (email mayor@almaty.kz.)

Please send copies of letters and emails sent, to: socialism-rk@mail.ru. And: ainur1917@yandex.ru. (They will be translated into Kazhak, and distributed to the Shanyrak residents)

For more information in Russian, visit the Socialist Resistance (CWI Kazakhstan) website: http://kazakhstan.socialism.ru/

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