Kazakhstan releases the wife of the opponent of the regime
© mukhtarablyazov.org 24.12.2013

24 December, 2013. – At today's press conference in Astana, a spokesman for the Kazakh Ministry of Foreign Affairs declared that "the law enforcement agencies of Kazakhstan decided to change the measure of restriction of liberty of Alma Shalabayeva" by withdrawing the ban on her travel outside the city of Almaty”. Shalabayeva was illegally deported from Italy with her six-year-old daughter in May, 2013. The Italian government, the UN and human rights organisations have called for her release.

The decision was made at the request of Shalabayeva and the Italian government.

- Shalabayeva and her daughter received passports and can apply for a visa to travel to other countries.

- The criminal case against Alma Shalabayeva, which was initiated against her in Kazakhstan, remains open.

- As collateral in the case in which Shalabayeva is indicted as a defendant, shall be the house of Shalabayeva’s parents where she and her daughter lived after deportation.

- In a telephone conversation with Italian Foreign Minister, Emma Bonino, Alma Shalabayeva expressed her gratitude for the effective assistance of Italy in her regaining freedom.

- The Italian authorities have previously acknowledged that the deportation of the wife and daughter of Ablyazov in May, 2013 was illegal and that the Prime Minister and the ministers of justice, internal affairs and foreign affairs had not been informed about it.

- Shalabayeva is the wife of Mukhtar Ablyazov, a leading opponent of Nursultan Nazarbayev, the former minister and businessman. According to the position of the General Prosecutor’s Office of Kazakhstan, in the period from 2005 to 2008, former heads of BTA bank, which was led by Ablyazov, with the use of shell companies, withdrew $6 billion from the bank. Criminal cases were initiated also in Ukraine and Russia. 12 high-ranking managers of BTA Bank were sentenced to 2 to 8 years’ imprisonment, while for other members of management, including Ablyazov, international arrest warrants were issued.

- Mukhtar Ablyazov was arrested in Southern France on 31 July, 2013. His extradition has been requested by Russia and Ukraine.

Commentary by the Open Dialog Foundation:

The regaining of freedom by Alma Shalabayeva is very good news, but only her arrival in Europe would be a reason for joy. Deciding to release her, Kazakhstan seeks to improve its image before the trial and thus increase the chances of Mukhtar Ablyazov’s extradition from France after 9 January, 2014. However, one must not forget that Kazakh prisons are still home to political prisoners, such as Vladimir Kozlov, human rights defenders, such as the attorney Vadim Kuramshin and labour activists, like Roza Tuletayeva.


Country Austria Belgium Czech Republic France Germany Italy Kazakhstan Poland Russia Spain Ukraine Topic Ablyazov Aix-en-Provence Aleksander Kwaśniewski Alexander Pavlov Alga! Aliyia Turusbekova Alma Shalabayeva Alua Ablyazova amnesty Amnesty International Ana Maria Gomes Angelino Alfano Antonin Lévy Astana asylum Audiencia Nacional Bill Browder Bolat Atabayev BTA Bank Bundestag Cassation Court Catherine Ashton Christiane Taubira Corbas Danielle Auroi Decembrists Democratic Choice of Kazakhstan Denis Grunis deportation economy EEAS Elena Valenciano Elisabeth Guigou Enhanced Partnership and Cooperation Agreement EU-Kazakhstan European Commission European Union extradition Federica Mogherini Fernando Maura Barandiaran Filippo Grandi Five Star Movement France Francois Hollande Frank Schwabe freedom of speech Garry Kasparov Home Office HRW human rights i-link Ignacio Sánchez Amor ill-treatment Ilyas Khrapunov Ilyashev & Partners international protection Interpol Iogan Merkel Irene Lozano ITAR-TASS Jacek Saryusz-Wolski Jaromír Štětina Jean-Claude Juncker Kazakhgate Kazakhstan Kazakhstan’s Prosecutor’s General Office Kazaword Kazimierz Michał Ujazdowski Kozlovska Kramek Laurent Fabius Lev Ponomarov Libero llyashev & Partners Lyon Lyudmyla Kozlovska Madina Ablyazova Mady Delvaux-Stehres Manuel Valls Manuela Serra Marcin Święcicki Marju Lauristin Mark Feygin Matteo Renzi Maurizio Improta Mediapart Michał Boni Ministry of Foreign Affairs Mukhtar Ablyazov Muratbek Ketebayev Nail Malyutin National Preventive Mechanism Nazarbayev Niccolo Rinaldi Nicolas Sarkozy non-refoulement principle Nursultan Nazarbayev Open Dialog PACE Pavel Svoboda Pavel Zabelin Peter Sahlas political asylum political persecution political prisoner prison privatization Process Rakhat Aliyev Ramazan Yesergepov rankings Red Alert Red Notice refugee status refugees release on parole repressions Russia Russian Federation Samruk-Kazyna Santer Sergey Duvanov Serhiy Khodakivskiy Solange Legras sources Spain Squarcini Statement Succession Sylvie Guillaume Syrym Shalabayev Tatiana Paraskevich the General Prosecutor’s Office of Ukraine Thun Tomáš Zdechovský Tomasz Makowski Tony Blair torture trial Trofimov Tunne Kelam Ukraine unfair trial UNHCR United Nations Urko Aiartza Viktor Shokin Vitaliy Kasko Viviane Reding Vladimir Guzyr Vladimir Kozlov Warrant Yehor Sobolev Yevgeniy Zhovtis Yukos Zhanaozen Zinaida Mukhortova
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