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Court Orders Release On Parole Of Jailed Kazakh Labor Union Leader

 Amin Eleusinov in court in May 2017 (file photo)
Amin Eleusinov in court in May 2017 (file photo)

PAVLODAR, Kazakhstan -- A court in Kazakhstan's northern city of Pavlodar has ordered the release on parole of labor union leader Amin Eleusinov.

The court's May 4 ruling would see the release of Eleusinov on May 21 unless prosecutors successfully appeal the decision, the court's press service told RFE/RL.

Eleusinov, a union leader at the Oil Construction Company (OCC), was sentenced to two years in prison in May 2017 after a court in Astana convicted him on embezzlement charges and for publicly insulting, assaulting, and refusing to obey a representative of state authority.

Eleusinov was arrested in January 2017 after hundreds of OCC workers went on a hunger strike to protest the closure of a trade union alliance.

The strike was stopped after a court in Astana declared it illegal.

Union activist Nurbek Qushaqbaev, who was arrested along with Eleusinov, was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison in April 2017 on charges of instigating an illegal strike.

Human rights activists in Kazakhstan and abroad have condemned the convictions, calling them politically motivated.

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