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Kazakh Report: December 12, 2001


12 December 2001

LEADERS OF KAZAKHSTAN'S DEMOCRATIC CHOICE SUPPORT BOLAT ABILOV
Leaders and activists of Kazakhstan's Democratic Choice held a press conference at the National Press Club in Almaty late on 11 December. Former Pavlodar Oblast governor Ghalymzhan Zhaqiyanov said that his movement supports Bolat Abilov, a deputy to the Mazhilis (the lower parliament chamber.) Abilov expressed his intention of quitting the ranks of the pro-Nazarbayev Otan Party last month. Otan Party leaders approved his leaving the party, but Kazakhstan's Central Election Committee demanded that Abilov leave the parliament on the grounds that he was elected as a representative of OTAN and after leaving the party ranks he has no right to remain a parliament deputy. Abilov's case is currently being considered by the Constitutional Council. Leaders of Kazakhstan's Democratic Choice say that Abilov was elected by ordinary citizens of the country, and therefore he cannot be expelled from parliament by the Central Election Committee.

It was also reported at the press conference that Kazakhstan's Justice Ministry has refused to register the movement (Kazakhstan's Democratic Choice -KDC) officially and has requested that its leaders submit some additional papers. Those papers will be sent to Justice Ministry in the nearest future. KDC was established by young politicians, including Zhaqiyanov, in the wake of the scandal last month concerning President Nursultan Nazarbayev son-in-law Rakhat Aliyev. All the founders of the movement have since been sacked by Nazarbayev.

MAZHILIS DEPUTY APPEALS TO COLLEAGUES TO GIVE ZHELTOQSAN VETERANS SPECIAL STATUS
At the 12 December session of the Mazhilis (the lower parliament chamber), Amangeldy Aytaly called on his fellow deputies to give additional privileges to the veterans of December 1986 Almaty uprising, the 15th anniversary of which will be marked this weekend together with the 10th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence. Aytaly argued that the status of the Kazakh youths who participated in the uprising should be different from that of those who fell victim to other forms of political oppression.

Communist leader Serikbolsyn Abdildin told RFE/RL correspondents that the events on Almaty's central square 15 years ago were caused by political tensions between some groups within Kazkahstan and the Soviet leadership. He added that all the veterans and victims of the events deserve more attention and moral support.

GROUP OF ETHNIC KAZAKHS ARRIVES IN SHYMKENT FROM PESHAWAR
On 9 December, a group of 144 ethnic Kazakhs arrived in Shymkent, southern Kazakhstan, from the Pakistani city of Peshawar. They were to have been brought to Kazakhstan in October, but the evacuation was delayed by the beginning of U.S.-led anti-terrorist operations in Afghanistan. ON 12 December, a spokesman for the Kentau City administration in South Kazkahstan told RFE/RL that 99 of the newly arrived ethnic Kazakhs have been housed in Kentau. A special class in a local secondary school and special groups in a kindergarten were established for the children of the newly repatriated Afghan Kazakhs. Those children are reeeportedly totally illiterate. The Afghan Kazakhs have also been examined by local doctors.

About 200,000 ethnic Kazakhs have arrived in Kazakhstan for permanent residence from Afghanistan, China, Iran, Mongolia, Russian Federation, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and elsewhere many Kazakhstan became independent in 1991. Special laws defining the procedure of repatriation, obtaining citizenship, education and other issues concerning Kazakh repatriates were approved by the Kazakh Parliament on December 12.

FEES FOR ELECTRICITY USE IN PAVLODAR TO RISE IN JANUARY 2002
Local authorities in Pavlodar Oblast officially announced on December 12, that starting January 1, 2002, fees for electricity use will be increased by 25 percent. Victor Kuzevanov, the head of the Pavlodar Electricity, Energy and Heating Department, told journalists that the measure was caused by the need to keep the whole electricity and heating supply system workable.

PARENTS OF A KAZAKH CITIZEN MISSING AFTER SEPTEMBER 11 TRAGEDY IN NEW YORK LOSE HOPE
The parents of Janetta Tsoi, a Kazakh citizen, who is believed to have been at New York's World Trade Center on September 11, held a press conference in Almaty on December 11, exactly three months after the terrorist attacks against the World Trade Center and Pentagon. Janetta's relatives said that she had been hired by Marsh LLP company and that September 11 was her first working day at WTC. After the tragedy her parents travelled to New York trying to find her alive or dead, but Janetta's body has not been recovered from the debris. Janetta is the only Kazakh citizen officially included in the list of persons missing after the attack against WTC. Her parents said that they still hope that her body might be found or that she is still alive.

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