(TRT World) Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev voluntarily and unexpectedly stepped down on March 19, after almost 30 years in power and five victories in elections that have been widely criticised as non-free and unfair.
Well, almost stepped down – the 79-year-old autocrat retains his honorary title of El Basy (National Leader), remains a lifelong head of the Security Council, whose authority was boosted to nearly-presidential last year, and still heads the ruling Nur Otan (Light of Motherland) party.
“Formally Nazarbayev is not president, but in reality, he is in power,” Dosym Satpayev, a political analyst based in Almaty, Kazakhstan’s financial capital, told TRT World. […]
More than a half of Kazakhstan’s current population was born during Nazarbayev’s rule, which has shaped the lifestyle and worldview of several generations, experts say.
“Since the early 2000s, they have lived in a world of political stability and relative material affluence, developing a strong consumerist culture,” Marlene Laruelle of the Elliott School of International Affairs at the George Washington University, wrote in a preface to her 2019 book on young Kazakhs. […]
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