Working groups, mainly consisting of representatives of non-governmental organizations, for several years monitored the situation with the observance of human rights in the spheres of migration, interethnic policies, as well as in relation to children. On the sidelines, there was even the opinion that the myth of interethnic friendship, cultivated in Kazakhstan, will crumble like a house of cards, if we look more closely at the scope of the observance of the rights of national minorities. This message is more than inconvenient to the authorities of Kazakhstan, by all means breaking through the chairmanship in the OSCE in 2009 and the Nobel Peace Prize to the President of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev.
The monitoring NGOs consider their position constructive - they point out to the authorities the shortcomings that need to be addressed in order to achieve the cherished status in the OSCE, the Nobel legacy, and much more. In addition to the laws on refugees and national minorities, in Kazakhstan there are still many problems in these areas. For example, graduates of Uygur, Uzbek, and other national schools do not have the right to take the Unified National Testing, which determines the distribution of applicants at universities, as well as state grants and loans for higher education.
Answering the question of “Oasis”, Victoria Tyuleneva, a lawyer at the Kazakhstan International Bureau for Human Rights, noted that the problems identified in monitoring in the area of non-observance of the rights of children and national minorities may complicate the decision to chair the country in the OSCE. In addition, she said, in 1999, the Kazakh authorities handed over three refugees to the Beijing Uighurs, fearing deterioration of diplomatic relations with China. Later they were sentenced to death. In 2005, another 25 political refugees Astana handed over to the Uzbek authorities.
Kazakhstan has ratified many international conventions, but it often happens that the rights established by these documents are violated. And they are mainly violated by those government agencies that should protect them. The main document protecting the rights and interests of children is the Law on the Rights of the Child, which, although it includes all elements of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, may in fact be limited to other legislative acts. So, for example, the law “On public associations” prohibits membership in parties to persons under sixteen years old. This, in turn, is contrary to the law “On the Rights of the Child,” which establishes the child’s right to freedom of conscience and voluntary participation in public associations. Thus, the law only declares the rights, which can then be infringed upon in a particular narrow sphere. The necessary mechanisms to improve the situation of minors have not yet been developed. In some schools of Kazakhstan, there are instances of violence against the students' personalities, which are expressed in rude attitudes and insults.
“Parents of children who complain of ill-treatment in educational institutions appeal to our public reception centers. And they say they do not want their children to attend schools, and are looking for alternative options, for example, getting education at home, ”says Elvira Vatlina, chairman of the Kazakhstan Children's Fund.
The working groups “On the protection of the rights of children”, which monitored the observance of the rights of refugees and children, noted the facts of unlawful methods of conducting investigation in relation to minors. In particular, children were morally influenced by investigators, investigators and operative workers during the initial investigative actions.
With regard to racial discrimination, Kazakhstan acceded to the “Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination” in 1998. However, the first report on this issue was submitted only in 2004. The time for submitting the next report is already “not far off,” the country will have to report to the UN on September 25, 2007. This convention is also more declarative than legislative. Many legislative acts contradict some articles of the convention, for example, the law “On Citizenship” practically enshrines the privileges of obtaining citizenship to ethnic Kazakhs. Many experts note that there is no domestic legislation in the country that punishes the dissemination of ideas of racial, ethnic and other types of discrimination. At the same time, in Kazakhstan, the layer of officials is represented by practically one ethnic group. In recent years, the number of anti-Russian, anti-Semitic, and xenophobic publications has increased in individual publications. According to some publicists, some influential newspapers have a tendency to publish articles that provoke inter-ethnic tensions.
Another problem facing Kazakhstan is the problem of refugees. On December 15, 1998, Kazakhstan ratified the 1951 Convention on the Status of Refugees and the Protocol relating to the Status of Refugees, thereby accepting obligations to follow the standards adopted in the above-mentioned international documents. But, unfortunately, in Kazakhstan, as indeed, in some other countries, the problem of refugees has remained urgent. There are more than fifteen thousand people seeking asylum or in need of international protection in the country, and the Agency for Migration and Demography of the Republic of Kazakhstan was established by presidential decree. Among the main tasks of this body is work with refugees, the main focus of which is on “prohibiting the expulsion or forced return of refugees to the countries from which they came, except in cases stipulated by international treaties”. If on the situation with the Uighurs Astana can refer to the 1993 agreement with China on cooperation, which treats the Uigurs seeking asylum in Kazakhstan as separatists, then with Uzbek refugees it is more difficult. Here you can not refer to any agreement. By the way, this is only the most likely assumption that 25 Uzbeks were sent back to their homeland. However, nothing is known about their fate. Therefore, with a certain probability, it can be argued about their deportation. There is a problem of non-compliance by Kazakhstan with the ratified international Convention. Since January 2001, a new Administrative Code entered into force, according to which a foreigner cannot be expelled from the republic without a court decision. However, contrary to national law, court hearings may take place in the absence of the offender himself. Often, it turns out that some judges do not delve into the affairs of migrants, but make decisions based on the findings of the migration service staff.
A working group of Kazakh NGOs, based on monitoring violations of the rights of refugees, ethnic minorities and children, provided a number of recommendations to the government of Kazakhstan. Among the most significant among them are: the development and adoption of the law “on refugees”, the development of measures of state support for children from refugee families, the adoption of a state program for the social rehabilitation of refugees and asylum-seekers.