Tanatar Kaliev, 46 year old oil-worker Testament on tortures in the Court of Zhanaozen

  • 22.04.2012
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Judge Aralbay Nagashibaev presides.

Tanatar Kaliev:

 - Your Honour... May I speak?

Judge Aralbaya Nagashibaev:

- Yes, I'm listening.

Tanatar Kaliev:

-  I want to say that I renounce my testimony which I gave yesterday. I have to tell the truth, the whole truth. I was interrogated without a lawyer, and I was beaten. When I was in the detention centre, everything around me was covered in blood, in the end I went to the prosecutor's office and the KNB (National Security Committee). They beat me over the head with a stool, I still cannot recover.

I made my previous statements, because I was frightened. I was afraid for my oldest son, and what I said yesterday was not true. It was a blatant lie! None of the oil workers who are sitting here are responsible for the disorders on the streets of Zhanaozen. They are not guilty, and I wait for a fair decision your honour. I renounce all the evidence! I have a request your honour, which is that they keep me in a separate jail cell. I beg you to resolve this issue and insist that all that I have just said would be included in protocol.

Judge Aralbaya Nagashibaev:

- All this will be included in official record.  But you can write a statement with the description of tortures. These accusations will be investigated, do you understand me, Kaliev? What else can you say on this matter?

Tanatar Kaliev:

- On the 20th of May 2011 we stood on the square, and during that time there were no disturbances. There were no hooligans and nobody was drinking alcohol. It was a strike - a labour dispute. I said this during investigation. In fact I always said this when I was talking at the different meetings. It was a labour dispute, and then they just turned it upside down. Oil workers are not responsible for the riots on the streets of Zhanaozen. With regards to December 16th, none of our guys ever acted or spoke against the government. I was taken to the District Department of the Interior No. 17, directly from the street. When they brought me there, everything inside was covered in blood. The day after, they delivered me to the Local Prosecutor's Office, where I was interrogated from morning to night. I cried. I was telling them that I know nothing, and that I was not guilty, so they took me to the local office of National Security Services and there they beat me with a stool. After that I have no idea what I was saying.

Judge Aralbaya Nagashibaev:

 (To courtroom) Everybody, calm down. (To Kaliev) Continue....

Tanatar Kaliev:

- I initially had no lawyer. I am not familiar with the law and did not know who to tell. There was no justice. They tortured me and brought me here to the courtroom.  I begged them in tears, I was trying to say that we are not guilty, but during the investigation no one believed me. They accused me of everything. I decided that I would tell the whole truth in court, I thought that at the end the court will decide on the matter. It was brutal violence, torture and pressure. I was tortured for the whole time I was there, and so I decided to tell the whole truth in court. Your Honour, I have nothing more to say, I hope that you will make a fair decision.

I have five children, one of them disabled, they threatened them to frighten me. I cannot even tell you about all the details of how they tortured me, there were many more. I'm too embarrassed and scared, and I know that if I tell you everything tomorrow they will torture me again.

Judge Aralbaya Nagashibaev:

(To courtroom) Everybody please be calm.

Tanatar Kaliev:

- I do not know what more I can say, I beg you your Honour for justice.

Judge Aralbaya Nagashibaev:

- What can you say on the answers you gave to the questions asked of you yesterday?

Tanatar Kaliev:

- I renounce them, your Honour, I gave my previous testimony under violent pressure, and it was all lies. They exterted pressure on me, they beat me and broke me physically and mentally. Today I am here telling you the truth...

More on this topic: Zhanaozen, Tanatar Kaliev, Open Dialog