Relatives of many of the individuals detained in the Kazakh city of Almaty for alleged participation in unauthorized protests during against Kazakhstan’s presidential elections say they cannot find their family members. Interviewed prison staff told Current Time that they had no information about the individuals’ whereabouts.
Kazakhstan’s Prosecutor General’s Office announced on June 13 that “more than 950 people” were detained in the capital, Nur-Sultan, and the city of Almaty on June 9, election day, and June 10 for participating in “illegal” protests. Office Six hundred and seventeen people were put under arrest for six to 15 days; the rest were either fined or given a warning, said the Office’s public affairs representative, Saparbek Nurpeisov.
Kazakhstan has come under heavy international criticism for its arrests of protestors and the overall conduct of the vote. Arresting individuals for a non-violent, “legitimate” expression of opinion is “an apparent contradiction with Kazakhstan’s obligations under international human rights law,” commented Ryszard Komenda, the head of the UN Human Rights Office for Central Asia.