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Motion for a resolution - B6-0177/2006Motion for a resolution



with request for inclusion in the agenda for the debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
pursuant to Rule 115 of the Rules of Procedure
by Pasqualina Napoletano and Bernadette Bourzai,
on behalf of the PSE Group
on Kazakhstan

Procedure : 2006/2543(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
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European Parliament resolution on Kazakhstan

The European Parliament,

-  having regard to its previous resolutions on Kazakhstan,

-  having regard to the European Union's Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) with Kazakhstan, which was signed on 23 January 1995 and entered into force on 1 July 1999,

-  having regard to the Commission's Central Asia Strategy Paper 2002-2006,

-  having regard to the conclusions of the fourth meeting of the Cooperation Council between the EU and Kazakhstan,

-  having regard to Rule 115(5) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas Mr Altynbek Sarsenbayev, a prominent politician and the Co-Chairman of the 'true Ak Zhol' opposition party was brutally murdered on 13 February 2006 together with his escort,

B.  whereas only three months ago Mr Nurkalidov Zamanbek, opposition leader, was killed under "mysterious circumstances",

C.  whereas Askhat Sharipzhanov, a famous journalist, and Oksana Nikitima, the daughter of an opposition activist, were also killed,

D.  whereas twelve opposition activists as well as a number of journalists were jailed for five to 15 days for holding a rally on 26 February 2006 in memory of the slain opposition leader Altynbek Sarsenbayev,

E.  whereas several of the activists are on hunger strike to protest against their imprisonment,

F.  whereas six suspects were arrested in connection with the murder of Mr Altynbek Sarsenbaek, including a former deputy prime minister and special force officers,

G.  whereas Kazakhstan is a key ally in the fight against international terrorism and religious fundamentalism,

H.  stressing that respect for human rights, democracy and the rule of law is a fundamental element of the EU-Kazakhstan Partnership and Cooperation agreement, upon which the development of future relations will be based,

1.  Condemns the murderers of Mr Altynbek Sarsenbayev and all other politically motivated killings and extends its condolences to the families of the victims;

2.  Expresses its great concern that within the time frame of three months two prominent opposition politicians were killed and expresses its concern at the degeneration of the political environment in Kazakhstan, where human rights activists, independent journalists and opposition members are increasingly subject to violence and harassment;

3.  Calls on the Kazakhstan authorities to carry out an immediate, full and transparent investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of Mr Altynbek Sarsenbayev and the two persons who accompanied him and to refrain from restricting the independent media and international observers from freely contributing to the clarification of the circumstances of the murder;

4.  Condemns the jailing by the Kazakhstan authorities of opposition activists and journalists for five to fifteen days for their part in the unauthorised rally marking the death of Mr Altynbek Sarsenbayev;

5.  Urges the Kazakhstan Government to honour its commitments under the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement, in particular respect for democracy, the principles of international law and human rights, and to move towards democratisation, the guarantee of further freedom for citizens and liberalization;

6.  Calls on the Council and the Commission to put the question of respect for human rights at the core of the next Cooperation Council meeting, linking progress in this field to the further implementation of the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement, and to strengthen TACIS democracy programmes for Kazakhstan, aiming, in particular, at strengthening and developing democratic institutions and independent media and stepping up the fight against corruption;

7.  Condemns some European connivance with the regime of Nursultan Nazerbaiev, a complicity probably linked to the attraction of the economic development of Kazahkstan;

8.  Recognizes the crucial role played by Kazakhstan in providing stability in the region and its economic progress but reminds the Kazakh authorities that the fight against religious extremism cannot be an excuse for escalating oppression of the opposition and democratic forces in the country;

9.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, the OSCE, the Council of Europe and the Government and the President of Kazakhstan.