Kazakh Prime Minister Karim Masimov is known as the country's top blogger.
He launched his personal blog last month as an online forum for citizens to raise their concerns, and ordered his ministers
to do the same. Since the launch, his blog has received thousands of comments, many of them critical of the government. So far so good.
But the spirit of openness appears to have ended, as messages from ordinary citizens are being censored.
Readers in the northern city of Stepnogorsk contacted RFE/RL's Kazakh Service
to say that they had left comments on the blog, which appeared but then were seemingly removed. They had been complaining about problems with their drinking water.
And starting 10 days ago, two independent websites (zonakz.net
) went down and are still unavailable in apparent denial-of-service (DoS) attacks. The government has refused to launch investigations into the cases.
Meanwhile, a draft Internet law is being discussed in the parliament.
The law would impose stricter control over traffic, including chat rooms, as well as monitoring individual bloggers. None of which bodes well for Kazakh Internet freedom.
-- Kazakh Service