Kazakh dissident Aaron Atabek dies weeks after his release from prison. News

Known as a fierce critic of the Nursultan government, 68-year-old writer Atabek was undergoing treatment for a Kovid-19 infection.



According to activists and media reports, Kazakh dissident Aron Atabek has died less than two months after his release from prison, where he spent 15 years.

Writer and poet Atabek was 68 years old.



Atabek, known to be a fierce critic of the Nursultan government, died late on Wednesday at a hospital where he was being treated for COVID-19. local media Quoting the hospital administration.

radio aztiki He was quoted as saying by Atebeek’s sister that he had died of a heart attack.



He was released from prison last month on grounds of suffering from an incurable spinal cord disease, having spent more than 15 years behind bars out of his 18-year sentence.

Atabek was found guilty of major riots in 2006, which were prompted by the demolition of illegal settlements in Almaty and resulted in the killing of a policeman. He has denied any wrongdoing and refused to apologise, and is regarded by many as Kazakhstan’s longest-serving political prisoner.



Images of Atbek after his release – looking emaciated – shocked fellow activists who have accused officials of deliberately destroying his health. The prison administration has told rights activists that Atabek refused treatment.

Rights activists blamed the authorities for the drastic deterioration of his health.

“He didn’t become what we saw him on October 1 – overnight,” wrote Ainash Kearney on Facebook. “It took years and years of effort to bring him to such an emaciated state.”

There are no real opposition parties in the oil-rich nation of 19 million people, which was led by one leader, Nursultan Nazarbayev, for nearly three decades until 2019, when he resigned and named loyal ally Kasim-Jomart Tokayev as his successor. .

Nazarbayev came to power when oil-rich Kazakhstan was still part of the Soviet Union. He was the head of the Communist Party and was elected president in 1991 before the collapse of the Soviet Union.

He extended his term with massive victories in consecutive elections and referendums. In the 2015 election, he received around 98 percent of the vote.

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