Tag Archives: Rumour spreading

Kazakhstan Goes after Muckrakers

6 May


With protests over land sales breaking out across Kazakhstan like a hydra on steroids, the authorities are coming down hard on what it deems to be rumour spreading.

The latest media outlet to come in the crosshairs is First Channel Eurasia, which is 20% owned by the Russian government. The channel recently broadcast a programme in which it alleged that the recent protests were being bankrolled by mysterious “outside” forces.

The programme, Analitika, made unsubstantiated claims that people attending the meetings were being paid “between $50 and $150 dollars”.

This claim was later picked up by a regional governor. “Why should we listen to those hiding in the West? Why should we work for Western money? Where is our national pride?” the governor asked, in a report quoted in the Kazakhstani media.

kazaxia’s political wizzard, Gerry Kafali, commented: “In these uncertain times, the authorities will be doing all they can to contain rumours and muckspreading. It is highly irresponsible of media outlets and officials to be peddling such disinformation.”

It awaits to be seen whether these unfounded comments constitute a breach of the rumour spreading law, which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years.