Kazakhstan: Grant pardon to critically ill political prisoner
- Imprisoned Mukhtar Dzhakishev is critically ill and must be pardoned on humanitarian grounds.
The Norwegian Helsinki Committee and the Association for Human Rights in Central Asia today sent an open letter to the president of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev. The two organizations urge President Nazarbayev to grant pardon to political prisoner Mukhtar Dzhakishev on humanitarian grounds. Dzhakishev, serving a 14-year sentence since 2009, is suffering from life-threatening disease, and the groups expressed concern for his life if he remains in prison.
At the end of last year, doctors diagnosed Dzhakishev with a serious vascular disease that may ultimately result in death. He has earlier been diagnosed with enlargened heart and arterial hypertension – a form of high blood pressure. Dzhakishev has not been receiving satisfactory medical treatment in prison and his condition has been progressing rapidly.
If not properly and timely treated, his life will be in danger. In 2001 Dzhakishev’s father, suffering from the same condition, passed away following a sudden stroke. The Norwegian Helsinki Committee and the Association for Human Rights in Central Asia asked President Nazarbayev to release him on pardon so that he may receive necessary medical attention.
Recently, Dzhakishev’s elderly and ill mother pleaded with President Nazarbayev to release her son on pardon. In her plea, Dzhakishev’s mother wrote that her last wish in life is to see her son as a free man. With the open letter to President Nazarbayev the Norwegian Helsinki Committee and the Association for Human Rights in Central Asia hope to support her plea and encourage the president to grant Dzhakishev pardon on humanitarian grounds.