Tag: Eurasianet

Kyrgyzstan: Investigators Declare War on Facebook

https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=51457257

Authorities in Kyrgyzstan have lashed out at social media and, in particular, how it is being used to say mean things about President Almazbek Atambayev.

In recent days there have been two reports of Facebook users being called in for a stern talk with the security services for things they have written — or might have written — about Atambayev. Nobody has been charged, yet.

There was a surge of hubbub on social media last week when news broke of one man being reportedly grilled over suspicions he is the mind behind Murch, an anonymously run Facebook account that serves as a repository for lowbrow political humour.

Watchdog Accuses Kazakhstan of Flouting Labor Rights

Kazakhstan is flouting the rights of its workers to organize in trade unions and assert their labor rights, a damning new report published by an international human rights watchdog alleges.

The study, “We Are Not The Enemy: Violations of Workers’ Rights in Kazakhstan”, was published by Human Rights Watch on November 24, shortly ahead of the fifth anniversary of a bout of fatal violence that spiraled out of an oil strike in the town of Zhanaozen.

The report documents “harassment, surveillance, and, in some cases, spurious legal prosecution or dismissals in apparent retaliation for labor activism.”

Turkey Pursues a Reset with Uzbekistan

The president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, arrived for a two-day visit to Uzbekistan on November 17 in a diplomatic overture that aims to undo more than a decade of frostiness.

Erdogan was due to open his trip with a visit to Samarkand, where he planned to visit the grave of the late Uzbek leader, Islam Karimov. But observers’ attention will be fixed mainly on his meeting with Acting President Shavkat Mirziyoyev for what Uzbek media have said will be an exchange of views on regional and international issues.

Kazakhstan Introducing Compulsory Fingerprinting Program

Kazakhstan’s Interior Ministry has said it plans to create a national fingerprint database that would include details on all the country’s citizens by 2021. Deputy Interior Minister Rashid Zhakupov said on November 15 that the initiative will cost 36.8 billion tenge ($107 million).

Submitting fingerprints within the coming four years is to be made compulsory, news website Vlast.kz reported.

“Including fingerprints in identification documents will allow for 100 percent certainty in identification. This will facilitate passage through border controls,” said Serik Sayinov, head of the Interior Ministry’s migration department.