Toughening of punishment for slander contradicts international liabilities of Kazakhstan - Kaleyeva

Date: 14:48, 26-08-2019.

Almaty. August 26. KazTAG - Toughening of punishment for slander contradicts the international liabilities of Kazakhstan, said Tamara Kaleyeva, president of International Fund for Freedom of Speech Adil Soz.
"I really hope that the speeches at any sessions of the parties are not the strict task which the Prosecutors' General Office and the Majilis must perform. We have the liabilities on the International pact on civil and political rights, we have recommendations which we have to perform,  but now there is a proposal to toughen punishment with a special law which does not exist in any UN member states - I have no comments about it," she said.
In her words, decriminalization of slander in Kazakhstan is among the UN recommendations.
"All the international organizations which monitor performance of the International pact on civil and political rights - the UN committee on human rights, the UN council on human rights and others - all of them give recommendations on decriminalization of slander in Kazakhstan," she said.
“In the last report for Kazakhstan - on the universal periodic review - they (the authorities of the country - KazTAG) reacted to the recommendations as follows (I practically quote the plan for implementing the recommendations):" Discuss the decriminalization of slander and insult in the interdepartmental group until the end of 2017. " In 2018, at the meeting of the dialogue platform on the human dimension, which is regularly held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan, I asked the representative whether there was such a meeting and what the interagency group recommended - and I did not get a clear answer. That is, even this miserable reaction to the recommendations of international bodies has not been implemented," she said.
In addition, she noted that criminal liability for slander impedes the freedom of speech.
“There is another option - to leave this article in the Criminal Code, but not to provide for deprivation of liberty as a punishment. This is evidenced by remark 34 of the Article 19 of the International Pact, which was also adopted at the highest international levels, and which states that if a country is unable to abandon criminal liability for slander, penalties other than deprivation of liberty must be provided. Deprivation of liberty for slander can never be recognized as lawful, because it infringes the freedom of speech and freedom of expression," she said.


Photo source: picture from an open source

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