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Kazakhstan

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  1. Kazakhstan Main Page
  2. Oil Brings Hope for Prosperity
  3. President Nazarbayev Continues to Consolidate Power and Stifle Opposition
  4. President Nazarbayev Absence Raises Concern
  5. 2012 Election Brings Criticism and Little Change
President Nazarbayev Continues to Consolidate Power and Stifle Opposition

But as its economic outlook blossoms, Kazakhstan's scant democratic principles continue to wither. In the past several years, the president has harassed the independent media, arrested opposition leaders, and passed a law making it virtually impossible for new political parties to form. In Dec. 2005, President Nazarbayev was reelected with 91% of the vote. In May 2007, Parliament voted to do away with term limits, thus allowing President Nazarbayev to remain in office indefinitely. In June, Nazarbayev dissolved parliament and called for elections in August, two years ahead of schedule. The opposition complained that the move did not give them adequate time to campaign.

Prime Minister Daniyal Akhmetov resigned in Jan. 2007, without giving a reason. He was replaced by former deputy prime minister Karim Masimov.

In Aug. 2007 parliamentary elections, the governing party, Nur Otan (Light of the Fatherland), won 88.1% of the vote and all 98 contested seats. The victory further consolidated power in the hands of Nazarbayev.

Next: President Nazarbayev Absence Raises Concern
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