09ASTANA556, KAZAKHSTAN: ALMATY NOTES, MARCH 14-27

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09ASTANA556 2009-03-31 11:22 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Astana

VZCZCXRO4998
OO RUEHAG RUEHAST RUEHBI RUEHCI RUEHDA RUEHDBU RUEHDF RUEHFL RUEHIK
RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHLH RUEHLN RUEHLZ RUEHNEH RUEHNP RUEHPOD RUEHPW
RUEHROV RUEHSK RUEHSR RUEHVK RUEHYG
DE RUEHTA #0556 0901122
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 311122Z MAR 09
FM AMEMBASSY ASTANA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 5054
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE 1421
RUCNCLS/ALL SOUTH AND CENTRAL ASIA COLLECTIVE
RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 0801
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 1504
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL 0488
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 2234
RUEHNO/USMISSION USNATO 2564
RHEBAAA/DEPT OF ENERGY WASHDC
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RHEFAAA/DIA WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC 0984
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC 0897
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC
RHMFIUU/CDR USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL

UNCLAS ASTANA 000556 
 
SIPDIS 
 
STATE FOR SCA/CEN, DRL 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: PGOV PHUM SOCI KDEM KZ
SUBJECT:  KAZAKHSTAN:  ALMATY NOTES, MARCH 14-27 
 
1. The "Almaty Notes" series from U.S Office Almaty focuses on 
developments in civil society, the media, and the opposition in 
Kazakhstan's "southern capital." 
 
OPPOSITIONISTS RESERVE THE OPTION TO PROTEST 
 
2.  On March 17, the leaders of the opposition parties Azat, the 
National Social Democratic Party (OSDP), and the Communist Party 
issued a statement rejecting the ruling Nur Otan party's "memorandum 
on stability" -- a proposal that all parties refrain from public 
protest actions until the economic situation stabilizes.  The three 
opposition parties called the proposal "impractical."  Alikhan 
Baimenov's Ak Zhol party -- which the other opposition parties 
consider to be the government's "pocket opposition" -- previously 
signed on to the memorandum. 
 
COMMUNISTS AND ALGA FORM A BLOCK 
 
3.  The Communist Party and the unregistered Alga party announced on 
March 20 their intention to establish a political block called 
"Narodovlastiye" (People's Power).  In a statement, they said that 
the goal of the block is to unite the resources of both parties and 
to raise awareness of urgent problems the nation is facing.  The 
parties claim that at a time when there is a clear crisis in the 
governance of the state, society needs a constructive opponent of 
the ruling authorities to protect people from arbitrariness and 
lawlessness. 
 
UNITED OPPOSITION? 
 
4.  In an interview with the opposition newspaper "Taszhargan," 
Asylbek Kozhakhmetov, the leader of the Shanyrak movement, outlined 
his vision for uniting all opposition parties into a single union. 
In his view, opposition parties should learn from the ruling Nur 
Otan party, which united many pro-government forces, and form their 
own block in advance of the country's parliamentary and presidential 
elections (which are both scheduled to take place in 2012). 
Kozhakhmetov said that he passed a detailed proposal for such a 
union to the leaders of Azat, OSDP, and the Communist Party.  Asked 
for his predictions on whether the proposal will be adopted, 
Kozhakhmetov admitted that while "negotiations are underway, it is 
difficult to presume that they will lead to an agreement." 
 
AFGHAN WAR VETERANS DEMAND RESTITUTION 
 
5.  On March 20, 60 members of the Afghanistan War Veterans Union 
picketed the building of an Almaty district court demanding a fair 
review of the sale of their organization's property.   The 
protesters allege that several years ago, the chairman of the 
Afghanistan War Veterans Union illegally sold the organization's 
property, including a land plot and office buildings.  Members of 
the Union challenged the deal in the courts, but hearings on the 
matter have been continuously postponed. 
 
HOAGLAND

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