What is at the Mercy of Tortoise?


ALMATY, Feb 17

(Specially for THE GLOBE)

Clicking a shutter of a camera and giving films to the developing saloons we hardly think of how decisive the photo�s influence may be on the public consciousness. For Yuryi I. Kuidin, a photographer with 35-years experience, photo is his life. He was going to enter the Agricultural Institute and become a microbiologist. But His Majesty Occasion decided his fate to be different.

When I saw for the first time his works devoted to victims of nuclear tests at the Semipalatinsk polygon in a magazine, I was terrified. Those photos seemed to be from a mad masquerade. But they were true and I had to appreciate the photographer�s skill to control himself. Only some years later we were introduced to each other.

By that time Kuidin had established the anti-nuclear fund Phoenix, had held some exhibitions all over the world and published a photo-album. His topic was the same � consequences of nuclear tests at the Semipalatinsk polygon. This is photographer�s difficult mission � to tell the world about tragedy of his people disregarded for the sake of military interests.

For his album Nuclear Tragedy of Kazakhstan, Kuidin received the 3-degree super-prize at the first Kazakhstani advertising competition, that was held within the last international exhibition Polygraphy, Advertising. Now the Statuette of Tortoise as the symbol of wisdom, eternity and memory of the victory stands on the photographer�s working table. Everybody imparts it with his own essence. Once people thought that the earth was flat and was lying on the back of the huge Tortoise. Though this conception was denied soon, the image of the wise and majestic animal remained. It still symbolizes good, safety and calmness.

Participation in peace marches is especial part of the Phoenix fund history. Fund members had gone along roads in Kazakhstan, America, Europe and Asia. In this year another Peace Caravan� 2000 to start. It was initiated by U.S. colleagues. Most probably, Kazakhstan will become a start point for activists. Further the March will go through Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand. The travel is expected to be interesting. Moreover, the finish point � the Chatham Islands that are well-known thanks to their geographical location and the celebration of the new Millenium.

Possibly, the main aspect of Yuryi Kuidin and his anti-nuclear fund is the new project Family to Family. This time to cover more people they use Internet, where a separate site (http://www.phoenix.org.kz) contains lists of ill people along with their addresses and diagnoses. Though the project name means contacts between families, in fact there are no restrictions. Anyone, including a businessman, a company or a family, who wishes may render aid. They may choose surname of a child and send him a letter, a postal wrapper or a parcel with necessary medicines, products or cloths. 3,500 ill children from the Semipalatinsk, Karaganda, Pavlodar, Kzyl-Orda and Almaty oblasts wait for their help. A miserable pension that is always delayed is not enough either for medicines or to maintain their life. Most of their parents do not work and their families can hardly make both ends meet. They already have some responses: Sharip Omarov sent parcels with cloths, sport suit and football ball with autographs by Kairat veterans to Shuhrat Muhamediev from Zharkent. The mayor Rinata Yoska of the Italian town Albanella (a surgeon by his profession) performed two operations to Berik Syzdykov from the village Znamenka (Semipalatinsk oblast). Now Berik study music and blind literacy. Monika Beaver from Luxembourg presented a wheelchair to Ainash Naimanbaeva born in the village Lesnovka near the Chinese border with cerebral palsy. Besides, soon a number of organizations and businessmen from Almaty will care for some ill children. The German company Hebruder Bankofsky sending humanitarian aid to Germans living in Kazakhstan responded to the call and agreed to cooperate with the project Family to Family.

Recently the professional-technical college #1 agreed to care for three families living in Almaty. They are families of Dima Loisha, Dana Tulebaeva and Daniyar Tolebaev. They all were born in Almaty, but once their parents lived near the polygon, which caused their serious diseases. Tamara Shakirova, the director of the college was born and lived in Semipalatinsk oblast. Of her 10 children, only four live. She reminds that she could not understand for a long why her brothers and sisters died one after another. People said that they died because of wasting disease � a child who ran in the morning playing with other children, suddenly died in the evening. For Tamara Shakirova to assist ill children is not an advertising trick. She understands mothers of ill children,, and though it is impossible to return their health, she will do her best to make their life easier.

The list of ill children is being constantly supplemented, as the fund have sent inquiries to many settlements in the Almaty, Semipalatinsk, Karaganda, Kzyl-Orda and Pavlodar oblasts. Soon another 2,000 surnames will be added to the Internet site. But Phoenix did not receive any response from western Kazakhstani towns situated near the nuclear polygon Azgir and the rocket polygon Kapustin Yar.

According to Kuidin, the access to Internet gives some advantages. First, this is the outlet to the international level, as people from foreign countries may render aid. Second, this allows them to have the continuously supplemented database on ill children living in ecologically difficult regions and nuclear tests polygons. Besides, it allow a sender follow the receipt of the parcel by addressee. Thus, this organization is much more efficient than the humanitarian aid that is almost completely settles in big towns and does not reach far regions. Everybody may help ill children � schoolchildren and their parents, organizations and businessmen. People may involve all their relatives and friends. The main thing is that they should do it heartily wishing good and health to these innocent children. For a small company some parcels with drugs and cloths will not be a burden. We are much more than 3,500 ill children. If each of us sends a parcel or just a letter to one of the addresses, somebody will find a friend.

Explosion at the polygon.

Dana Tulebaeva cosulting a doctor.

Programs of �31st Channel� Radio on February 18 to 20 FM 103.5


7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Reactive morning

10 a.m. to 2 p.m. DJ Tahmina Kibirova

12 a.m. to 1 p.m. Who�s there?

2 p.m. to 5 p.m. DJ Anel Bisimbaeva

5 p.m. to 6 p.m. World chart show

6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Official hit-parade �31 top 10�

6 p.m. to 10 p.m. DJ Sabit Suleimenov

10 p.m. to 12 p.m. Dance zone


8 a.m. to 12 a.m. DJ Alyona Lobastova

12 a.m. to 4 p.m. DJ Serik Akishev

4 p.m. to 10 p.m. DJ Anel Bisimbaeva

6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Official hit-parade �31 top 10�

7 p.m. to 8 p.m. You Wrote Us concert

10 p.m. to 12 p.m. Dance zone


8 a.m. to 12 a.m. DJ Alyona Lobastova

12 a.m. to 4 p.m. DJ Denis Karetnikov

4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Post-Soviet hit-parade

7 p.m. to 8 p.m. You Wrote Us concert

8 p.m. to 10 p.m. Back to the Future

10 p.m. to 11 p.m. Post-Soviet hit-parade

11 p.m. to 12 p.m. Pilot

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