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Kazakhstan elections should be open to all opposition parties


09 Jan 2012


Global Europe

Saying the exclusion of 50,000 electors in city of Zhanaozen makes a farce of Kazakhstan's proposed elections, Irish GUE/NGL MEP Paul Murphy called for the elections to be postponed and said that they must be open to all opposition parties.

“The admission that 50,000 electors in the city of Zhanaozen in Kazakhstan will be barred from voting in next Sunday's parliamentary election makes a farce of the idea that these elections are in any way free and fair. Zhanaozen is at the heart of the area where thousands of oil workers have been on strike for over 6 months. Up to 70 strikers and supporters were killed by state forces on 16 December in a brutal crackdown."

“Now, with the extension of the state of emergency, the government will exclude the electors in this city, many of whom have personally experienced the violent anti-worker attitude of the Nazarbayev government. This adds insult to the injury of elections that have already excluded any genuine opposition parties."

"I call on the election observers from the OSCE and other international institutions to take up the question of the exclusion of 50,000 electors with the Kazakh authorities, argue for the postponement of the elections and to meet with the representatives of the striking workers in Zhanaozen."

“The state of emergency must be ended immediately and a genuinely independent investigation should be launched into the massacre. The call to boycott the elections by independent trade unionists must be supported and recognition withdrawn from any parliament resulting from these fraudulent elections. Preparations should be made for genuinely free and fair elections to a democratic constituent assembly in which workers and the poor are fully represented allowing for a genuine discussion on how Kazakhstan society should be governed in the interests of all."

GUE/NGL Press Contacts:

David Lundy +32 485 50 58 12

Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20

European United Left / Nordic Green Left

European Parliamentary Group