OSCE concerned about violation of freedom for peaceful meetings in Kazakhstan

Date: 09:29, 11-06-2019.

Almaty. June 11. KazTAG - The representatives of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) expressed concern about violation of the freedom of peaceful meetings in Kazakhstan.
“We were concerned about reports that peaceful protesters in large cities were dispersed by police and about multiple detentions. Such events are of great concern, and an overreaction to them harms the country's reputation, ” said George Tsereteli, OSCE special coordinator  at a press conference.
At the same time, he noted that the Kazakh authorities should establish a constructive dialogue with civil society.
“The people in Kazakhstan expect the new president to establish democratic institutions, carry out reforms in the social sphere and support development of civil society in accordance with the OSCE standards. It is crucial for the country's leadership to use this opportunity and establish a constructive dialogue with political leaders and with the society in general. The voice of youth must also be heard and taken into account, ” he added.
In turn, Margareta Kiener Nellen, head of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly (PA) delegation, stressed that yesterday’s detention of citizens violated the right for peaceful meetings
“Yesterday’s arrests of peaceful protestors on the streets, including journalists, violate the constitution’s guaranteed right for peaceful meetings and the right to freely express one’s opinion,” she said.
In addition, the head of the OSCE PA delegation noted that the current legislation of the Republic of Kazakhstan limits freedom of speech in the country.
“Moreover, the media legislation contains a number of restrictive measures, such as criminalization of libel, insults and imprisonment for up to seven years for spreading false information. Such restrictions are of serious concern, as they restrict freedom of speech and can lead to self-censorship of journalists in the country, ” Nellen added.

Photo source: picture from an open source

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