The Semey – Almaty – Astana bike ride was organized in cooperation with the Norwegian organization Bike for Peace and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
17 persons from Norway and Kazakhstan volunteered to cycle approximately 2,200 km in 24 days in order to commemorate the closure of the nuclear testing polygon in Semipalatinsk, Kazakhstan. On August 29th 1949 the first atomic bomb was tested in Kazakhstan, formerly Soviet Union as part of the Cold War between USSR & USA.
During 40 years more than 450 bombs were tested there, making it one of the biggest 20th century ecological disasters and a painful human tragedy. On August 29th 1991 the polygon was closed by the Decree of the first President of Kazakhstan.
On August 29th 2010, Kazakhstan and the rest of the world marked the first International Day against Nuclear Testing. We chose this date as the finish date in Astana, capital of Kazakhstan.
The event was a success from the first day, with many different participants, meetings with local politicians, teachers, bikers, students, young people, old people and witnessing Kazakh culture and hospitality on close hold.
This ride received great mass media coverage in Kazakhstan and abroad.