The sentence handed to Mr Kozlov is the result of an impartial and objective investigation.

From the beginning of the trial, the court respected all the defendant’s rights guaranteed by the Constitution of the Republic of Kazakhstan, specifically: the right to a legal defense, the right to independently formulate and present one’s case in court, the right to qualified legal assistance, the right to access evidence and take part in examining it, the right to file requests, and the right to give oral and written explanations to the court.

I categorically disagree with all politically motivated insinuations about the alleged absence of a fair and impartial decision by the court.

Attempts to politicize a purely criminal matter are traditionally characteristic of certain individuals in Kazakhstani society.

In order to overcome these pre-conceptions as well as the politicization and so-called internationalization of a purely criminal case, the court examined all the circumstances carefully, comprehensively, objectively and impartially, ensuring full competition and equality of the parties. In particular, I would like to emphasize that the trial was open and that anyone, absolutely any person, could take part. Both media and representatives of civil society organisations, independently of their country of origin, political views or beliefs, were granted access to the trial. This is tangible and clear confirmation of the trial’s fairness and impartiality, to which particular attention was paid from the start.

I note that this type of legal practice is far from being widely applied in all democratically developed countries.

It should also be noted that Aminov and Sapargali immediately admitted their guilt at the beginning of the trial, and received suspended sentences of 4 and 5 years respectively.

The verdict has not yet entered into force and can been appealed by the defendants. This is yet another demonstration of the fundamental principles of a lawful state. The legal basis for political pluralism is fully in place in Kazakhstan. I would like to emphasise that in any lawful and democratic state, proven facts and illegal actions aimed at undermining and destroying the social and economic foundations of the constitutional order are a criminal offense.

Interference in the course of justice in a lawful state is categorically unacceptable, and calls from any country or international organisation to influence the course of justice undermines these fundamental principles of the rule of law from the start.

Kazakhstan’s courts, and those of any state, do not accept calls from individual countries, organizations or political views of the defendants as a basis for their decisions.
Altay Abibullayev
Chairman of the Committee for International Information
Spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan