facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Kazakh riots plagued by uncertainty

July 12, 2012 at 1:33 PM   |   Comments

ASTANA, Kazakhstan, July 12 (UPI) -- There are too many unanswered questions surrounding the use of force during demonstrations in Kazakhstan in December, a top U.N. official said.

Clashes between security forces and demonstrators followed strikes in Zhanaozen in December. At least 15 people were killed. A video circulated on YouTube shows demonstrators apparently getting shot by riot police, though security officials claimed victims were struck by ricochets.

Human Rights Watch said it appeared Kazakh authorities were trying to silence government critics despite promises of a transparent investigation into December violence.

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said from Astana there was evidence to suggest authorities used excessive force during the "tragic events" in December. A precise narrative of the events, she added, has so far proved "elusive."

"Allegations of torture and forced confessions do not seem to have been properly investigated, and there are many serious question marks over the fairness of judicial processes, and the conduct of trials (related to the incident)," she said in a statement.

Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev had said labor disputes and "criminal plots" are separate matters.

Pillay added it wasn't clear who gave the order to fire on the demonstrators.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
New F-35 sustainment system undergoing flight testing New F-35 sustainment system undergoing flight testing
2
Jon Stewart criticizes NFL for actions against Adrian Peterson Jon Stewart criticizes NFL for actions against Adrian Peterson
3
Scrap South Stream, Europe says Scrap South Stream, Europe says
4
Ferguson cop testifies before grand jury about Michael Brown shooting Ferguson cop testifies before grand jury about Michael Brown shooting
5
Scottish referendum: Who says 'yes' and who says 'no' Scottish referendum: Who says 'yes' and who says 'no'
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback