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European Parliament’s plenary debate and a resolution on freedom of expression in Kazakhstan

On Thursday 10 March, 2016, during the European Parliament’s plenary session in Strasbourg, a debate on freedom of expression in Kazakhstan was held. After the discussion, an urgent resolution was adopted.

The recent cases of clampdown on freedom of speech carried out by the Kazakh authorities, including these of Nakanune online portal in Kazakhstan and Respublika media outlet in the United States, attracted the attention of the Members of the European Parliament, who called on Kazakhstan to immediately release detained activists, journalists and political prisoners and to adhere to its international human rights obligations.

The plenary session debate with the urgent resolution were the result of a high-level working breakfast at the European Parliament in Brussels dedicated to the topic of media freedom in Kazakhstan and the persecution of Kazakh independent journalists and bloggers, in the country and abroad, organised on Tuesday, 26 January 2016, by the Open Dialog Foundation and the Estonian Member of the European Parliament Mrs Marju Lauristin (Socialists and Democrats).

The recent statements of the international organizations and other human rights NGOs on media freedom in Kazakhstan, and particularly the Nakanune and Respublika cases are available below: