On Tuesday, an assemblage of individuals amounting to several hundred congregated at the central square in the region of Mangystau in southwestern Kazakhstan with the objective of procuring the release of their fellow citizens who had been apprehended in Astana.
In Astana, Kazakhstan’s capital, the police have detained dozens of oil workers of the southwestern town of Zhanaozen.
The workers were demanding jobs after their company lost a tender in recent weeks that would have provided work.
“Judging by the videos, the people are not going to go home. On the contrary, more and more people are coming to the central square. Local activists say that there are between 1,000 and 2,000 people there. Police data is not available so far,” it writes.
On 2nd January 2022, the protestors in Zhanaozen started the rallies that were supported all across Kazakhstan leading to the #BloodyJanuary mass protests. More than 220 people died as a result but in Zhanaozen & Aktau there was no violence and no casualties.
— Dr. Diana T. Kudaibergen ���� (@CreativeCorazon)
April 11, 2023
Earlier today, a group of employees representing an oilfield service company based in Zhanaozen were apprehended in Astana for engaging in an unsanctioned rally, spending nearly 24 hours in front the premises of the nation’s energy ministry. The individuals in question are currently subject to administrative charges.
The workers said they lost their jobs after their company had lost a tender for oil work in the energy-rich western region of Manghystau recently.
Last week, while hundreds of former oil-industry employees gathered in front of the offices of OzenMunaiGaz (an independent oil and gas company) demanding jobs, dozens of women in Zhanaozen staged a protest demanding permanent jobs for their sons and husbands.