Kazakhstan Commemorates 1986 Jeltoksan Victims

On Friday as Kazakhstan celebrated 20th year of independence there was also a somber 25th annual commemoration of the 1986 doomed independence protests against the Soviet Union.

Many former activists from that time in 1986 look back and remember a time when a repressed people made their voice heard.

The commemoration ceremony was attended by the mayor of Almaty and many other citizens. Flowers were laid at a monument to the protestors. During the commemoration parts of the Qur’an were recited.

As remembered Jeltoksan (December), protests began in December 1986 when many Kazakhs took to the streets of the then Kazakh Soviet capital of Almaty (independent Kazakhstan moved its capital in 1997 to the present capital city of Astana) to protest the appointment by the central Soviet government in Moscow of a non-Kazakh to lead the then called Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic. After the appearance of protestors on the streets of Almaty the Soviety Army appeared and according reports the Soviet army took many university students out of the city and murdered 22 of them ending the short lived protest.

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