In December 2011 in the Kazakh city of Zhanaozen, 14 protesters were killed by police during a strike by oil workers. The oil workers’ leader, Roza Tuletaeva, was imprisoned. The video above tells their story. In May 2011, workers from the Ozenmunaigas …

USi Live Asia, Kazakhstan,

In December 2011 in the Kazakh city of Zhanaozen, 14 protesters were killed by police during a strike by oil workers. The oil workers’ leader, Roza Tuletaeva, was imprisoned.

The video above tells their story.

In May 2011, workers from the Ozenmunaigas oil field went on strike for unpaid danger money, higher wages and better working conditions. The strike was declared illegal and the state oil company fired nearly a 1,000 workers.

Some of the sacked workers occupied the town square in protest. The strike continued for months, and in mid-December, some workers in the square began calling for the right to form independent political parties free of the government’s influence.

On 16 December, there were clashes between protesters and police who were attempting to evict them from the square in preparation for an Independence Day celebration. Protesters were shot by the police, and the oil workers’ leaders arrested.


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.