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Written declaration No. 660 | Doc. 14595 | 28 June 2018

Political prosecutions undermine the trust in the Kazakhstani justice system

Signatories: Mr Frithjof SCHMIDT, Germany, SOC ; Mr Werner AMON, Austria, EPP/CD ; Mr Volodymyr ARIEV, Ukraine, EPP/CD ; Ms Rósa Björk BRYNJÓLFSDÓTTIR, Iceland, UEL ; Mr Vernon COAKER, United Kingdom, SOC ; Mr Paolo CORSINI, Italy, SOC ; Ms Doris FIALA, Switzerland, ALDE ; Mr Paul GAVAN, Ireland, UEL ; Mr Mogens JENSEN, Denmark, SOC ; Ms Lotta JOHNSSON FORNARVE, Sweden, UEL ; Mr Jacques MAIRE, France, NR ; Ms Emilie Enger MEHL, Norway, ALDE ; Mr Ian MURRAY, United Kingdom, SOC ; Mr Aleksander POCIEJ, Poland, EPP/CD ; Ms Ulla SANDBÆK, Denmark, UEL ; Mr Axel SCHÄFER, Germany, SOC ; Mr Stefan SCHENNACH, Austria, SOC ; Mr Frank SCHWABE, Germany, SOC ; Ms Olena SOTNYK, Ukraine, ALDE ; Ms Petra De SUTTER, Belgium, SOC ; Mr Damien THIÉRY, Belgium, ALDE ; Mr Martin WHITFIELD, United Kingdom, SOC

This written declaration commits only those who have signed it.

Although Kazakhstan is about to evaluate the Joint Programme “Support to the Kazakhstani authorities in improving the quality and efficiency of the Kazakhstani justice system”, it isn’t going to bring Kazakhstan’s criminal justice framework, or its institutional practice, any closer to European and international standards.

Recent developments, mentioned in the written declarations 652 and 655, as well as the systemic use of torture in detention facilities, the lack of investigation into allegations of torture also evoke grave concern, as evidenced in cases of political prisoners, such as Maks Bokayev, Aron Atabek, and Mukhtar Dzhakishev who may die at any moment, as he is held in isolation and denied visits by international observers. The case of Iskander Yerimbetov, deprived of the right to a fair trial, or misuse of INTERPOL and politically motivated extradition request in the case of blogger Muratbek Tungishbayev also serve as illustrative examples.

We particularly regret that more than 140 participants in the peaceful protests of 10 May and 23 June 2018 have been persecuted for executing their right to peacefully demand that the political oppression and torture be stopped, and advocating for free education.

We strongly condemn such practices and call Kazakhstan to fulfill its international obligations.