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The statement of the Open Dialog Foundation

On the morning of the 28th of March 2012 in Almaty, when leaving their homes for work, Irina Mednikova, the editor of the “Voice of the Republic” newspaper, and the head of the Publications Dissemination Department, Yulia Kozlova, were detained by officers of the Department of the National Security Committee. The “Open Dialogue” Foundation emphasizes that repressions of independent media and civil society activists contradict the assurances and promises of Kazakhstan’s government given to the European Union.



28 March 2012


Wednesday morning began for the editorial staff of the independent newspaper “Voice of the Republic” with an unpleasant surprise. Journalist, Irina Mednikova, and Head of Publications Dissemination Department, Julia Kozlova, were met by security services at their homes. People in civilian clothes gave Irina Mednikova a writ and immediately escorted her to the Department of the National Security Committee on Vinogradov Street. Security officers seemed to have been waiting for Irina since early morning and took her by surprise when she left home for work. This happened even before the start of the working day. Irina had time to call the office and tell them what had happened to her, but she could not give any details. The reason for the summoning the editor to appear is not known. Now her cell phone is turned off, it is obvious that Irina is under interrogation. Julia Kozlova was taken when she was getting into her car to go to work in the editorial office. She did not have time to call – the driver told us about her arrest. Whether there was a writ, he does not know. The editors draw attention to the flagrant violation of the rights of the editorial staff – they were not even allowed to ask for help from their lawyers. Apparently, this was planned so that they would be taken by surprise. It is possible that they are now pressured by the National Security Committee workers.

Editors of the “Voice of the Republic”