EU calling Kazakhstan to provide freedom of speech and mass media - Mogherini
Almaty. July 9. KazTAG - Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, declared that the European Union is calling Kazakhstan to provide freedom of speech and mass media, reports Radio Azattyq.
"The EU is calling Kazakhstan and other states of the region to consistency in striving to improve human rights standards, ensure freedom of expression and freedom of mass media, giving the media the opportunity to work without any barriers, ”said Mogherini, commenting on the mass arrests by security officials in Nur-Sultan, Almaty and other major cities of Kazakhstan on July 6 .
Speaking about the arrests on Saturday, the head of European diplomacy said that this “question always rises.”
“Promoting democratic change in Central Asia can sometimes be a painful process. (...) Central Asia should be free in cooperation with various countries - the European Union, the United States, Russia and China, which are competing for influence in the region which is rich in energy resources," she added.
Mass detentions of people took place near the Central Stadium in Almaty. At spots the process of detentions in Almaty grew into clashes of civilians with law enforcement forces.
Security forces also threatened journalists - law enforcement officials said that any attempt to take comments from individuals detained by the police was regarded as a provocation, and stated that journalists who tried to communicate with people would also be detained. In the area of events the Internet was completely blocked. Detentions continued until night.
People were massively detained in the area of the Yesil shopping center along Republic Avenue in Nur-Sultan, and also in the quarter between Tassenova Street to Republic Avenue. All of these sites were completely cordoned off. Drivers were beeping to the security forces, expressing outrage at their actions.
The police in Nur-Sultan ignored the attack of an unknown person with a gas spray on journalists during the detentions. High-ranking police officials were present at the scene, including the deputy head of the Nur-Sultan Police Department Bakytzhan Malybayev.
Photo source: picture from an open source