Letter to the Foreign Secretary

Justice for Kazakhstan Oil Workers

We will deliver this letter to William Hague, the UK Foreign Secretary, on 16 December 2013

Dear Mr Hague,

On the second anniversary of the massacre of oil workers at Zhanaozen, Kazakhstan, in which at least 16 people were killed and 60 injured, we urge you to protest to the government of Kazakhstan about the repression of the oil workers’ movement.

We call on the government to take action on the multiple abuses of human rights and multiple breaches of international law that this repression has involved. Specifically, we urge you:

1. To call for the release from prison of at least 10 trade union activists, and others who supported them, jailed mostly under the catch-all law on “inciting social discord”, after trials at which there were multiple breaches of Kazakhstan’s own legal standards;

2. To take appropriate action in international fora and the international courts on the use of torture against defendants and witnesses in those trials;

3. To demand that the Kazakh government ensures free access to Zhanaozen for representatives of international trade union organisations and non-governmental organisations, so that they can set in motion an independent investigation of the massacre of 16 December, to ascertain the real number of victims and inquire into who was responsible for the massacre.

4. To denounce publicly the government of Kazakhstan for its illegal and unjust repression of the oil workers’ movement, and for its intensification of attacks on freedom of speech and of political action in the two years that followed.

Yours sincerely,

Rail Maritime and Transport union/Oil Industry Liaison Committee Offshore Energy Branch

David Anderson MP (Labour, Blaydon)

Professor Bill Bowring (School of Law, Birkbeck College, University of London)

Andrew Brady (Union Solidarity International)

Andrew Burgin (Vice-Chair, Coalition of Resistance)

John Davies (author, Beating Berlusconi)

Barry Faulkner (member of Unite, personal capacity)

David Hopper (General Secretary, Durham Miners Association)

Emma Hughes (Platform London)

Owen Jones (columnist, The Independent)

Lyudmyla Kozlovska (Open Dialog Foundation, Warsaw)

Dr Maria la Falce (SOAS)

Ian Lavery MP (Labour, Wansbeck)

Liz Leicester (member of Unison, Camden, personal capacity)

Gabriel Levy (Justice for Kazakhstan Oil Workers)

Serikzhan Mambetalin 

Anton Moctonian (member of Unite, personal capacity)

Grahame Morris MP (Labour, Easington)

Walton Pantland (Union Solidarity International)

John Peters (Honorary Life Member, University and College Union)

Madeleine Reeves (lecturer, University of Manchester)

Neil Rothnie (North Sea oil worker, RMT, personal capacity)

Bert Schouwenburg (International Officer, GMB)

Vaughan Thomas (RMT, Central Line West branch chair)

Sasha Zernova (Solicitors International Human Rights Group, CIS working group coordinator)

■ To add your name, or the name of your trade union or other organisation, please email gabriel.levy.mail@gmail.com

More information about the Justice for Kazakhstan Oil Workers campaign here

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