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Address of journalists of the television company "TAN"

In 1937 Osip Mandelshtam wrote: “We live not feeling the country underneath us”. He implied the mood of the Soviet people, living with the fear of Stalin’s repressions.

It seems like lately we too stopped to feel the country underneath us. Or rather we have a feeling that we live in two countries simultaneously. One country is the country that is shown on the television channel “Khabar” and which is portrayed in semi-official “Kazakhstankaya Pravda”. The other country is the one where we actually live. In this country politicians are being repressed for dissidence, democratic reforms are being restrained.

Freedom of speech is being oppressed in this country. Officials wash off the money in Swiss banks. Recently the following newspapers: “Nachnem s ponedelnika”, “Respublika 2000”, “Vremya po”, “Delovoye obozreniye Respublika” and Pavlodar’s television company “Irbis” were closed down. All of the aforementioned mass media were shut down by authorities only because they were narrating about the country where we live in.

Lately strange events have been taking place around television channel “TAN”.

On March 27 wires were cut on the roof of the television channel, including the cable of radio-relay line connecting studio with the transmitter on the television tower. Thus, editorial office was cut off the air. That evening the final newscast was aired in recording with one hour delay.

On the next day March 28 the line was restored.

On the same day the television channel “TAN” commented arrest of the famous businessman and politician Mukhtar Ablyazov on air.

During the day of March 28 and at night of March 29 feeder, owned by the television channel, was fired at from fire-arms.

The shooting was coming from two directions. The shooters’ target was the cable of the television channel “TAN”, connecting the transmitter with antenna. After unsuccessful attempts to damage the cable during the day, “strangers” shot through the cable at night, but in a different place.

Thus, broadcasting of “TAN” channel was suspended.

Time is needed in order to restore the airing.

According to preliminary data we might need few days and even weeks. Despite of what happened, the journalists continue working as usually.

We evaluate these shootings as psychological pressures on the employees of the channel. Journalists may become the next target of the “strangers”.

“We live not feeling the country underneath us”. We believe that this is the general mood of the entire community, not only journalists of the television channel “TAN”. It’s just that we talk about it, while our colleagues keep silence. It’s not difficult to understand them. They are afraid of the authorities.

While the authorities are not afraid of anyone. The only way out in this situation is to appeal to international public and legal organizations, which is called upon asserting of liberal values. They also need to understand in what kind of country Kazakh citizens live.

Staff of the LRP “Television and radio company “TAN””

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