Statement by Russian anarcho-syndicalists and anarchists on the situation in Kazakhstan
We, Anarcho-syndicalists and Anarchists of Russia express our full and complete solidarity with the social protest of the working people of Kazakhstan and send them our comradely greetings!
The current explosion of social protest in Kazakhstan, one of the most outstanding and brightest since the beginning of the new century, has become the apogee of the wave of the strike struggle of oil workers and other categories of workers in the country, which has not stopped since last summer.
The working people of Kazakhstan gradually recovered from the terrible massacre of the proletarians, organized in 2011 by the dictatorial regime of Nazarbayev, and began to consistently seek higher wages and the ability to create trade unions and other workers’ associations. The poverty of the majority of the population, the cruel exploitation of labor, the rise in prices, daily oppression and lack of rights made the position of the working person unbearable and forced him to rise to protest actions.
The last straw was the layoffs of tens of thousands of oil workers in December 2021, the introduction of a “sanitary” dictatorship under the pretext of “fighting the pandemic” and a draconian increase in gas prices. On January 3, a general strike of workers began in the Mangistau region, which soon spread to other regions of the country. In the former capital of Kazakhstan, Almaty, clashes erupted between protesters and repressive forces; there are tens or even hundreds of people killed and wounded. During the protests, disadvantaged people, primarily young unemployed and internal migrants, committed acts of popular expropriation, destroying many large shopping centers, shops and bank branches. In a number of cases, the troops refused to open fire on the rebels.
The protest in the country is spontaneous and uncoordinated; therefore, its participants put forward a variety of, often contradictory, slogans and demands. We, as anarchists, support, first of all, those of them which have a distinctly and unequivocally social orientation and sharply distinguish the strike and uprising in Kazakhstan from the numerous electoralist protests and political coups of recent years. These demands were spread during the protest rallies and in social nets: the abolition of the increase in gas prices; increase in wages by 100%; cancellation of raising the retirement age; taking measures to combat unemployment; abolition of compulsory vaccination against COVID-19, lockdowns and discriminatory segregation measures, etc.
In an effort to end the social revolt and gain time, the frightened regime was forced to make concessions: to declare a drop in gas prices, freeze prices for “socially important” goods for 180 days, dismiss the government and remove the de facto dictator, billionaire Nazarbayev, from the post of head of the Security Council of Kazakhstan. But none of this helped. Western oil companies insistently demanded that President Tokayev restore the capitalist order. The country’s rulers imposed a state of emergency and curfews, banned rallies and strikes, and launched punitive operations against protesters and rioters, spilling streams of blood and arresting thousands of people.
At the request of the Kazakhstani regime, troops from a number of countries of the military-political bloc headed by the Russian Federation are being brought into the country to suppress social protests. They are called upon to fulfill the role of a gendarme for World Capital and trample the flames of social rebellion until its example, slogans and demands spread to other countries, engulfed in workers’ strikes and mass protests against the widespread “sanitary” dictatorship and its apartheid.
We, Russian anarcho-syndicalists and anarchists, strongly condemn any suppression of social protests by the working people of Kazakhstan and the shameful counter-revolutionary foreign intervention led by the Kremlin.
We condemn any attempts by politicians of all stripes to use the social protest of Kazakhstani workers in order to climb to the top of power by themselves and redistribute property in their favor.
We stand firmly, resolutely and without the slightest hesitation on the side of the current social revolt in Kazakhstan and call on the working people of Russia and the whole world to show practical solidarity with it.
FULFILL SOCIAL REQUIREMENTS OF KAZAKHSTAN WORKERS!
STOP SUPPRESSING PROTESTS IN KAZAKHSTAN AND REPRESSION AGAINST THEIR PARTICIPANTS!
FREEDOM TO ALL ARRESTED PROTESTORS!
NO FOREIGN INTERVENTION!
SHAME TO INTERVENTIONISTS!
Anarchist Initiative StopTotalControl
Commission of Information of CRAS, IWA section in the Region of Russia