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SWAN member from Kazakhstan under surveillance; authorities question street action on December 17

Social bureau Kovcheg, a part of Taldykorgan Regional Foundation on Employment Assistance, organized a small street action on December 17. Several sex workers, social workers and their allies went out to the street with red umbrellas, distributed postcards and discussed with passer-bys the ideas of the December 17 as well as the situation with sex work in Kazakhstan.

Media reports presented the street action as a political rally, and stirred discussion among journalists and readers alike. Ultimately, the debate in media attracted the attention of city authorities who put the Kovcheg and the reporters that covered the street action under surveillance and pressure. The authorities demanded explanations, lists of sex workers receiving social and medical counseling in Kovcheg, threatened with continuous auditing and inquired about the funding.

Several SWAN members among them organizations from Bulgaria, Macedonia, Slovakia, Ukraine, sent an open letter to the Kazakh authorities, extending their support to Kovcheg.

Send a letter of support to Kovcheg
Put the enclosed letter on your organization's letterhead, print it out, sign and fax on +7 7282 272 067. More