Tag Archives: Opposition protest Almaty

Kazakhstan: Justice is Might

25 Feb

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The authorities in Kazakhstan resorted to a show of brute force to keep a lid on protests in the commercial capital Almaty on 25 February. Hundreds of regular police in riot gear were augmented by special forces troops as an area of central Almaty was physically cordoned off by hundreds of officers in a bid to stop an opposition rally.

The organisers of the rally were rounded up before it took place, leaving other activists to lead the protest. Several arrests were made by snatch squads as the authorities came down hard on what it regards as an unsanctioned rally, despite Kazakhstan’s constitution safeguarding the right to free assembly.

This show of strength sent out a strong message that Astana is in no mood to compromise and that it will crush any dissent with an iron fist. Does anyone else sense an air of desperation in these actions, as the powers that be are increasingly backed into a corner with violence and intimidation as the last resort?