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Kazakh Activists Allege They Were 'Kept From Traveling To Almaty'

ATYRAU, Kazakhstan -- Activists of the unregistered Kazakh opposition party Forward (Algha) were unable to travel to Almaty today for a discussion on organizing a referendum seeking President Nursultan Nazarbaev's resignation, RFE/RL's Kazakh Service reports.

Adilzhan Kenzhegaliev, a coordinator for Algha's Atyrau branch, told RFE/RL that 15 party activists who planned to travel by train to Almaty could not do so as their seats were occupied by other passengers with valid tickets.

The activists planned to go to Almaty to take part in a discussion organized by Algha on initiating a referendum asking people whether Nazarbaev should resign.

The discussion is scheduled for September 25.

Kenzhegaliev said Kazakhstan's security services have organized the double-ticketing situation to prevent the activists from attending the Almaty event.

Also today, a court in Atyrau fined two Algha activists $35 each for resisting police. Almagul Dzhirenshieva and Raikhan Kenzhegulova were detained by police as they prepared to leave Atyrau for Almaty earlier this week.