Kazakhstan Solidarity appeal - trade unionists under attack

Xxxx Xxxxxx xxxxxxxxxx at xxxxxxxxx.xx
Wed Apr 17 09:43:31 MDT 2002

Dear Comrades

Our comrades in Kazakhstan are asking for solidarity.

At the Metallist factory in Uralsk a special "trade union conference"
is to be called at the initiative of the factory's management the
sole aim of which is to deselect the current trade union president
Ionur Kurmanov.

Ionur is known nationally as a determined and young trade union
militant. His picture is used as the background on national TV
whenever the trade unions strike. He was one of the first political
prisoners and unfortunately not the last in the new capitalist
Kazakhstan.His crime - insulting the President. Then hundreds of
trade unionists and socialists from all over the world protested at
his imprisonment.
On his release from prison he was elected by the workers at his
factory as President of the Trade Union. He has used this position to
defend as fiercely as possible the rights of workers at the factory.
He organised the biggest protest so far against the Nazarbayev regime
when over 5000 workers struck for 5 months.
Now the factory management have decided to try and get rid of this
"undesirable" and are trying to organise a rigged conference to
deselect him.

Please send faxes of protest to

00731 - 122- 42330 with a copy to

Suggested wording for fax:

To Director of the Metallist Factory Akhmedzhanov A Kh

Mr Akhmedzhanov,

It has been bought to our attention that your management has decided
to crudely intervene in the affairs of the trade union at your
factory in an attempt to deselect its President, Ionur Kurmanov, who
has become known throughout the world as a honest defender of the
rights of the workers at the Metallist factory.
We demand that you immediately cease your interference in the trade
union. The workers themselves and not the management have the right
to chose who should represent them and who is elected to the trade
union committee.

If you continue your interference we will have no alternative to
argue for a boycott of your factory internationally.


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