On January 29, at the Ualikhanov Institute of History and Ethnology, there was a meeting with members of the State Commission for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Political Repression (hereinafter referred to as the commission). The event was opened by a member of the commission, Candidate of Historical Sciences Dametken Suleimenova and a senior expert of the institute, Candidate of Historical Sciences Auezkhan Shashaev.
Mambet Koigeldiev, Doctor of Historical Sciences, Professor, Academician of the National Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Kazakhstan, who spoke at the meeting, called the results of the commission’s work an “Archival Revolution.” According to him, the achievement was the opening of regional archives and the publication of 72 volumes of collections of documents and memoirs of victims of repression. At the same time, the professor believes that attracting regional specialists to the project is a great success. Mambet Kulzhabay emphasized that during the USSR it was not easy for all the union republics, but Kazakhstan became a special field for conducting experiments.
The next speaker, Academician of the National Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Doctor of Historical Sciences, Professor Khankeldy Abzhanov, said that the work of the State Commission has been given presidential status, and now it needs to be brought to the parliamentary level. A separate law should be adopted regarding national liberation uprisings and prisoners. Archives should be accessible not only to commission members, but also to the general public. Documents in archives need to be digitized, following the experience of Western countries, since the condition of many documents is not very good and manuscripts should not be lost, but they are a precious testimony to the suffering of the people.
Director of the Arys Foundation (publishing house), Doctor of Philology Garifolla Anes spoke about the difficulties in collecting the first editions published in the Kazakh language. Even 4 books by the leader of the Alash movement, scientist and statesman A. Baitursynuly, whose work is considered the most well researched, have not been found. According to the director of the publishing house, although we know when and in which publishing house, how many copies were published, we have not yet been able to find them.
The famous historian, Doctor of Historical Sciences Georgy Vasilyevich Kan emphasized that during the work of the commission they achieved success in acquitting the prominent fighter for the independence of Korea Hong Beom-do. It was not easy for the authorities of the Republic of Korea to recognize General Hong Beom-do, since he fought in the ranks of the Red Army. And also G.V. Kan focused on the role of the Alash movement, which has become an identifier of the nation, and he is confident that in the future the victims of persecution must be acquitted.
Deputy Director of the Central State Archives of the Republic of Kazakhstan Marziya Ganievna Zhylysbaeva touched upon the personnel shortage that may be encountered in the future. In her opinion, we may not find specialists working in archives with documents in the next 10-20 years. The reason for this gap between generations is the lack of mentoring. The archivist also said that additions were being made to the section of the law “National Archival Fund of the Republic of Kazakhstan”.