Return to home
Kazaks make up only 40% of the country's 16-17
million people. The Great Horde broadly runs the country, the Middle
Horde provides many intellectuals, and the Little Horde appears to
have the oil industry locked up.
(WSJ, 10/27/97, p.A1)(WSJ, 1/7/98, p.A16)
The capital is Astana. Kazakhstan is the size of Western Europe.
(SSFC, 9/30/01, p.A2)(WSJ, 10/21/04, p.A17)
c4000BCE Apples (Malus Sieversii)
similar to modern day varieties began to appear around Almaty,
Kazakhstan. These ultimately produced the Red Delicious and Golden
Delicious in America. The Red Delicious was hybridized into the Fuji
and the Empire. The Golden Delicious was hybridized into the Gala,
the Jonagold, the Mutsu, Pink Lady and Elstar.
(WSJ, 7/3/03, p.A1)
800-300BCE The Scythians dominated the vast lands
stretching from Siberia to the Black Sea. Those who roamed what
later became Kazakstan and southern Siberia were known as the Saka.
(AM, 5/01, p.32)
1258 Feb 10, Huegu (Hulega
Khan), a Mongol leader and grandson of Genghis Khan, seized Baghdad
following a 4-day assault. Mongol invaders from Central Asia took
over Baghdad and ended the Abbasid-Seljuk Empire. They included
Uzbeks, Kazaks, Georgians and other groups. Some 200 to 800 thousand
people were killed and looting lasted 17 days.
(ATC, p.91)(AP, 2/10/99)(SFC, 4/12/03, p.A1)
1405 Feb 14, Timur, aka
Tamerlane (b.1336), crippled Mongol monarch, died in Kazakhstan. In
2004 Justin Marozzi authored “Tamerlane: Sword of Islam, Conqueror
of the World.”
1645 Mikhail Guryev, a Russian
trader, founded the Ural River port city known as Guryev. It was
later named Atyrau.
(WSJ, 7/25/01, p.A1)
1832 Akmolinsk was founded. It
was later renamed Tselinograd and then Akmola. In 1998 it became the
capital and was renamed Astana, which means capital.
(SFC, 5/22/98, p.A14)
1924 Stalin divided remnants of
Turkestan into the current Central Asian republics.
(SFC, 1/2/97, p.A10)
1924 Kazakhstan enacted women’s
(SSFC, 12/17/06, p.G5)
1930-1960 Millions of people including ethnic
Germans and Russian dissidents died during this period, unable to
survive starvation and torture in a network of gulag camps scattered
from Russia's Arctic tundra to the inhospitable Kazakh steppe.
1932-1933 Stalin imposed terror and famine on the
Ukraine, Kuban and Kazakhstan that was carried out be Lazar
(WSJ, 2/14/96, p.A-15)
1936 Dec 5, Armenian SSR,
Azerbaijan SSR, Georgian SSR, Kazakh SSR & Kirghiz SSR became
constituent republics of Soviet Union.
1943 Jan 26, Nikolai Vavilov
(b.1887), Soviet botanist, died in prison. In 1929 he had traced the
genealogy of the apple to Kazakhstan.
(SSFC, 5/25/08, Books
1944 Feb 23, Stalin ordered the
mass deportation of Chechens to Kazakhstan for resisting Soviet rule
and abetting the Germans. More than a third of the population died
before the rest were allowed to go home.
(WSJ, 8/12/96, p.A9)(SFEC, 2/20/00, p.A32)(WSJ,
1944 Mar 8, The Soviet
government celebrated International Women's Day by forcibly
deporting almost the entire Balkar population to Kazakhstan,
Kyrgyzstan and Omsk Oblast in Siberia. Starting on 8 March and
finishing the following day, the NKVD loaded 37,713 Balkars onto 14
train echelons bound for Central Asia and Siberia.
1947 Z.V. Togan (1890-1970)
published “The Origins of the Kazaks and ôzbeks.
1949-1951 In Moldova SSR 2 waves of deportations
were carried out, with some 40,000 Moldovans sent to Siberia and
what is now Kazakhstan.
1949-1956 Four major Soviet nuclear tests were
carried out near Semipalatinsk. Higher than expected mutation rates
on families in the area and their children were reported in 2002.
(SFC, 2/8/02, p.A14)
1949-1989 Nuclear tests were carried out by the
Soviets and reportedly contaminated some 500,000 local people. It
was feared that nuclear waste left in boreholes and cavities beneath
the surface may contaminate ground water and affect agriculture.
1950 Between Uzbekistan and
Kazakhstan the surface area of the Aral Sea was 67,000 sq. km. and
(WSJ, 2/5/98, p.A18)
1965 Mar 3, USSR performed a
nuclear test at Eastern Kazakhstan, Semipalitinsk, USSR.
1965 The Soviet Union halted
overground atomic testing.
(Econ, 9/11/04, p.)
1967 Feb 26, USSR performed an
underground nuclear test at Eastern Kazakhstan, Semipalitinsk, USSR.
c1968 The Aral Sea began
shrinking after Soviet engineers diverted water from its 2 feeder
streams, the Amu Darya and the Syr Darya.
(SFC, 11/30/98, p.A11)
1969 Jul 4, The USSR performed
nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR.
1970 Sep 24, The Soviet Luna 16
landed in Kazakhstan, completing the first unmanned round trip to
1971 May 25, USSR performed a
nuclear test at Eastern Kazakhstan, Semipalitinsk.
1971 A Soviet field test of
weaponized smallpox caused an outbreak that killed 2 young children
and a woman at the port of Aralsk. This was not made public until
(SFC, 6/15/02, p.A8)
1972-1999 A Soviet BN-350 nuclear breeder reactor
operated in the port city of Aktau over this period. It generated
some 3.3 tons of weapons grade plutonium.
(WSJ, 6/4/01, p.A19)
1973 Feb 15, The USSR launched
Prognoz 3 at Baikonur, Kazakhstan, to study solar flares.
1977 May 29, USSR performed a
nuclear test at Eastern Kazakhstan, Semipalitinsk, USSR.
1978 May 29, The USSR performed
a nuclear test at Semipalatinsk in Eastern Kazakhstan.
1978-1996 The Caspian sea had risen 8 feet due to
what experts believe was an upward thrust of the Earth’s crust
beneath the inland sea. Flooding has resulted over an area of 1.5
mil acres that includes 200 oil wells in the western region.
(SFC, 4/13/96, p.A-15)
1979 Aug 18, USSR performed a
nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh, Semipalitinsk, USSR.
1983 Zoo officials in
Kazakhstan reportedly claimed that a teenage elephant named Batyr
could reproduce Russian to utter 20 phrases, including "Batyr is
good." But there was no scientific study on the claim.
1986 Dec 16, Dinmukhamed
Kunaev, an ethnic Kazakh and long-serving head of Kazakhstan’s
Communist Party, was replaced by Gennady Kolbin, a Russian outsider.
2 days of student protests followed, which were brutally put down
with at least 2 deaths.
(Econ, 12/23/06, p.59)
1987 Feb 26, USSR resumed
nuclear testing at Semipalitinsk in Eastern Kazakhstan.
1987 May 15, The Soviet space
booster Energia took off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan
carrying a black container labeled Polyus with the Skif-DM inside.
The Skif-DM was a model a future weapon. Energia performed
flawlessly, but the Polyus, which was supposed to fire engines to
reach a higher orbit, shot back down to Earth and into the Pacific
Ocean. The Skif project came to a halt and Pres. Gorbachev did not
(SSFC, 9/27/09, p.A24)
1987-1992 ChevronTexaco used the services of James
Giffen to gain exclusive rights to study the Tengiz oil field.
Kazakstan paid his Mercator corp. some $67 million from 1994-2000
for consulting work. In 2003 Giffen was indicted under the 1977
Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
(SFC, 4/7/03, p.A14)
1988 Spring, Soviet germ
scientists transferred hundreds of tons of anthrax bacteria into
canisters with bleach and sent them for storage to Vorrozhdeniye
Islamnd (Renaissance Island) in the Aral Sea, shared by Kazakhstan
(SFC, 6/2/99, p.A10,11)
1989 Nursultan Nazarbaev
succeeded Gennady Kolbin as head of Kazakhstan.
(Econ, 12/23/06, p.59)
1989 Soviet nuclear test
explosions ended in Kazakhstan. Between 1949 and the cessation of
atomic testing in 1989, 456 explosions were conducted at the STS,
including 340 underground shots and 116 atmospheric.
1989 Kazakhstan’s population
numbered about 16.5 million people. By the late 1990s it fell to
14.9 million as the economy declined.
(Econ, 3/24/07, p.47)
1990 The shrinking Aral Sea
split in two with a patch of desert in between.
(SFC, 11/30/98, p.A11)
1991 Dec 1, Nursultan
Nazarbayev was elected president of Kazakhstan.
1991 Dec 13, Five Central Asian
republics of the Soviet Union (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan,
Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan) agreed to join the new Commonwealth of
Independent States (CIS) being organized by Russian President Boris
1991 Kazakhstan established
1991 Vozrozhdeniye Island
(Renaissance Island) in the Aral Sea became the property of
Kazakstan and Uzbekistan.
(SFC, 3/24/03, p.A5)
1991-2000 Kazakhstan received some $550 million in
US aid during this period.
(SFEC, 4/16/00, p.C15)
1992 Mar 2, Kazakhstan’s Pres.
Nursultan Nazarbayev proposed to the UN General Assembly an annual
reduction of military budgets by 1% and using the money to fund UN
(Econ, 12/16/06, p.81)
1993 The inflation rate was
(WSJ, 7/5/00, p.A18)
1994 Nov 23, A large cache of
bomb-grade uranium was transferred from Kazakhstan to the United
1994 Kazakhstan’s Pres.
Nursultan Nazarbayev elevated Akezhan Kazhegeldin, a wealthy
businessman, to prime minister.
(WSJ, 7/5/00, p.A18)
1995 Nov, The oil minister
says new US and Russian players had joined the struggle to develop
the Soviet republic's giant Tengiz oil field, located on the
northeast edge of the Caspian Sea.
(WSJ, 11/1/95, p.A-10)
1995 Dec, Private ownership of
land was legalized. Military bases and common land remain restricted
from private ownership.
(WSJ, 12/27/95, p. A-7)
1995 Kazakhstan Pres. Nursultan
Nazarbayev took extra power under a new constitution.
(WSJ, 10/21/04, p.A17)
1996 Jan 2, President, Nusultan
Nazarbayev was building a new Kazakh capital 600 miles north of
Almaty in swampy Akmola with transfer due to begin in 1998.
(SFC, 1/2/97, p.A10)
1996 Apr 1, The president,
Nusultan Nazarbayev, once worked at the Karmet industrial complex.
(WSJ, 4/1/96, p.A-10)(WSJ, 5/2/96, p.A-1)
1996 Apr 26, The Shanghai Five
grouping was created with the signing of the Treaty on Deepening
Military Trust in Border Regions in Shanghai. Boris Yeltsin and the
presidents of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan visited Shanghai
and signed a treaty with Pres. Jiang Zemin at the Jin Jiang Hotel
that demarcated their borders with China.
1996 Jul 4, China’s Pres. Jiang
Zemin began a 3-day to Kazakhstan, whose population numbered about
15 million. Zemin held talks with President Nazarbayev, and met with
Kazakhstan Parliament Lower House Speaker Ospanov and delivered an
important speech entitled "For a Better Future of Friendship and
Cooperation Between China and Central Asia". The two sides signed a
joint statement, the extradition treaty, the agreement on
cooperation between the People's Bank of China and the Kazakhstan
National Bank, the agreement on cooperation in quality control and
mutual certification of import and export commodities and other
1997 Apr 5, Regional police
reported the arrest of 7 men in Novosibirsk, Russia, who officials
said planned to smuggle 11 pounds (5.2kg) of enriched uranium to
Pakistan or China. The uranium was reportedly stolen from a plant in
the former Soviet republic of Kazakhstan.
1996 Apr 15, The State Forestry
Committee announced the creation of the Zailisky Alatau National
Park, which is to cover 600,000 acres south of the capital, Almaty.
The park is intended to protect such endangered species as the Tien
Shan bear, the golden eagle, the Barbary falcon and the snow leopard
of which there are fewer than ten in the park.
(SFC, 4/16/96, p.A-9)
1996 Apr 26, The Shanghai Five
grouping was created with the signing of the Treaty on Deepening
Military Trust in Border Regions in Shanghai. Boris Yeltsin and the
presidents of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan visited Shanghai
and signed a treaty with Pres. Jiang Zemin at the Jin Jiang Hotel
that demarcated their borders with China.
1996 Jun-Jul, Swarms of locusts
threatened 2 million acres of farmland in the Atyrauz and Kokchetav
regions and along the Caspian Sea.
(SFC, 6/29/96, p.C1)
1996 Aug 2, Doctors warned of a
surge in TB when 56,000 prisoners are released under a government
amnesty. It was estimated that 16,500 prisoners had the disease.
(WSJ, 8/2/96, p.A1)
1996 Oct 6, It was reported
that the first Chevron gas station opened. The country has 24
billion metric tons of reserves.
(SFEC, 10/6/96, B8)
1996 Nov, The Canadian firm
Hurricane Hydrocarbons Ltd. (later known as PetroKazakhstan Inc. of
Calgary) won the bidding in the Kazakhstan’s first oilfield
privatization. For $120 million it acquired a field producing 50,000
barrels a day with reserves of 340 million barrels. The deal was
accompanied by an array of social obligations. It later faced
problems with the Kazakh government over fuel pricing and
(WSJ, 11/18/97, p.A1)(WSJ, 6/1/05, p.A11)
1996 Alashbayev Abdeyaziovitch,
mayor of Aralsk, began to dam to separate the northern portion of
the Aral Sea from the larger southern portion. This 1st attempt
failed when water spilled over the top and washed away the dam.
(SFC, 11/30/98, p.A12)
1997 Mar 27, Ella Maillart
(b.1903), Swiss sportswoman and travel writer, died. She chronicled
the savage collectivisation of Karakalpak agriculture in Uzbekistan,
Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan in the 1930s.
1997 Sep 10, It was announced
that a stock exchange would open this year.
(WSJ, 9/10/97, p.A16)
1997 Nov 8, The transfer of
Kazakhstan’s capital to Akmola from Almaty was officially
celebrated. The shift was in part made to move the capital away from
the Chinese border.
(WSJ, 11/10/97, p.A1)(Econ, 11/13/04, p.47)
1997 Dec, The Caspian
consortium had its funds frozen in the planned pipeline to the Black
Sea after Russian rights of way were found to be far from completed.
Russian fears of competition with its own Urals blend crude was
suspected. The consortium consisted of the governments of Russia,
Kazakhstan, Oman and 8 oil companies, with most of the funding
coming from the Western oil companies.
(WSJ, 2/2/98, p.A18)
1997 Klara Serikbayeva
published a new history of Kazakhstan.
(WSJ, 10/27/97, p.A14)
1997 Oct, Mr. Nazarbayev fired
Mr. Kazhegeldin as prime minister and replaced him with Mr.
Balgimbayev. The inflation rate under Kazhegeldin had been reduced
to around 20%.
(WSJ, 7/5/00, p.A18)
1997 Between Uzbekistan and
Kazakhstan the surface area of the Aral Sea was 30,000 sq. km. and
(WSJ, 2/5/98, p.A18)
1997 The Central Asia Regional
Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Program was initiated. The 8-member
group included Azerbaijan, Afghanistan, China, Kazakhstan,
Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
1998 Apr, The government
investment banks to sell off minority stakes in four state
enterprises: 2 oil and 2 mining companies, and planned to expand its
(WSJ, 5/14/98, p.A14)
1998 Jun, The first module of
an int’l. space station, US funded and Russian-built, was to be
launched at the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. [it didn’t make
(SFC, 1/29/98, p.A7)
1998 Jul 6, Kazakhstan and
Russia signed an agreement that divided the northern part of the
Caspian seabed into Russian and Kazakh sectors.
(SFC, 7/7/98, p.A10)
1998 Sep 10, In Kazakhstan a
rocket, carrying 12 Globalstar satellites valued at $180 million,
crashed shortly after takeoff.
(SFC, 9/11/98, p.A1)
1998 Oct 29, Five nations
endorsed the oil pipeline from the Caspian to the Mediterranean Sea.
Turkey, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan committed to
the 1,080 mile conduit with a push from the US.
(SFC, 10/30/98, p.A14)
1998 Nov 11, Argentina and
Kazakhstan pledged to abide by the treaty to cut emissions of gases
that cause global warming. This put a crack in a united front of
developing nations opposed to cuts before 2012.
(WSJ, 11/12/98, p.A1)
1998 Nov 20, In Kazakhstan a
Russian Proton booster rocket lifted up the first stage of the new
int’l. space station called Zarya (Sunrise).
(SFC, 11/20/98, p.A18)(SFC, 11/21/98, p.A13)
1998 Nov 24, Russia, Kazakhstan
and a group of major oil companies agreed to build a pipeline to
connect the Tengiz oil field to a Russian port on the Black Sea.
(SFC, 11/25/98, p.A16)
1998 Alashbayev Abdeyaziovitch,
mayor of Aralsk, began a 2nd attempt to dam the northern portion of
the Aral Sea from the larger southern portion. The sea had shrunk to
half its former size and left behind 13,000 square miles of
(SFC, 11/30/98, p.A12)
1998 Akezhan Kazhegeldin,
former prime minister (1994-1997), set up the Republican People's
Party of Kazakhstan. He was forced into exile in 1999 and in 2001
was sentenced in absentia to 10 years in jail for corruption and
abuse of power.
(Econ, 7/26/03, p.46-7)
1998 In Kazakhstan a law was
passed that barred anyone convicted of a legal infraction from
running for election. Illegal acts included insults to the honor and
dignity of the president.
(WSJ, 9/12/02, p.A8)
1998 Inflation in Kazakhstan
was held to 1.9% for the year.
(WSJ, 1/7/99, p.A16)
1999 Jan 10, In Kazakhstan
presidential elections were scheduled. Nazarbayev won another 7-year
term in rigged elections tinged with repression.
(WSJ, 1/7/99, p.A16)(SFC, 1/11/99, p.A10)
1999 Mar 2, In Atyrau,
Kazakhstan, 26 inmates stabbed themselves in the stomach in an
attempted mass suicide to protest prison conditions. All survived.
(SFC, 3/5/99, p.D2)
1999 Jun, Kazakhstan sold some
40 MiG fighter jets to North Korea.
(SFEC, 4/16/00, p.C15)
1999 Jul 7, From Kazakhstan it
was reported that a rocket carrying a telecom satellite blew up and
that launches at Baikonur would be suspended.
(WSJ, 7/7/99, p.A1)
1999 Aug 12, Pres. Nazarbayev
ordered the investigation of MiG sales to North Korea. South Korea
charged that 30 MiG-21 jets were sold this year.
(WSJ, 8/13/99, p.A1)
1999 Oct 27, In Kazakhstan a
Proton-K booster rocket with a Russian communications satellite
crashed during takeoff at the Baikonur cosmodrome and all launches
(SFC, 10/29/99, p.D3)
1999 Nov 22, Authorities
detained 22 people, all members of a Russian nationalist group
called Rus, on suspicion of planning a secessionist uprising.
(SFC, 11/23/99, p.A16)
1999 Kanatjan Alibekov (Ken
Alibek), the former director of Soviet anthrax production in
Kazakhstan, published "Biohazard."
(SFC, 6/2/99, p.A11)
1999 The Kazakh film “Killer”
by Darezhan Omirbaev starred Talgat Assetov.
(SFC, 4/22/99, p.E4)
1999 Pres. Nazarbayev grew
more self-protective after he came under suspicion of stowing funds
in Swiss bank accounts. The Swiss froze over a dozen Kazakhstan bank
accounts for alleged money laundering.
(WSJ, 9/12/02, p.A8)(WSJ, 5/6/03, p.A24)
c1999 Pres. Nazarbayev put
Rakhat Aliyev, a son-in-law, into a senior position with the Tax
Police and then the security agency KNB. He put Timur Kulibayev,
another son-in-law, in charge of oil and gas transportation.
(WSJ, 9/12/02, p.A8)
2000 Pres. Nursultan Nazarbayev
announced in 1998 that he was considering changing from the use of
the Cyrillic alphabet to the Roman by this year in conjunction with
a computerization program in the schools.
(SFC, 1/30/98, p.A13)
2000 May 15, A consortium of
Western oil companies found a large oil reserve in the northern
Caspian Sea off the coast of Kazakhstan. The 480-sq. mile Kashagan
field was estimated at 8 to 50 billion barrels of oil. In 2007 it
was reported that the Kashagan field contained some 12-billion
barrels of oil.
(SFC, 5/16/00, p.A14)(Econ, 11/17/07, p.43)
2000 June 22, In Kazakstan some
11,000 seals were reported found dead on the shores of the Caspian
Sea. Infectious disease linked to weakened immune systems due to
oil-related pollutants were blamed.
(SFC, 6/23/00, p.D3)
2000 Jul 30, In Kazakstan the
last nuclear test facility was destroyed with a controlled
detonation of 100 tons of explosives.
(SFC, 7/31/00, p.A14)
2000 Nov 22, A $2.5 billion oil
pipeline from Kazakhstan to the Russian port of Novorossiisk on the
Black Sea was reported completed by an int’l. consortium. Pumping of
600,000 barrels per day was expected to begin in 2001.
(SFC, 11/23/00, p.D5)
2001 Feb 12, Italy’s ENI SpA
won the right to operate the Kashagan oil field.
(WSJ, 2/13/01, p.A18)
2001 Feb, Core samples
indicated that the Kashagan oil field measured at least 25 miles
(WSJ, 3/5/01, p.A14)
2001 Mar 26, In Kazakstan the
Caspian Pipeline Consortium began pumping crude oil from the Tengiz
field to Novorossiisk, Russia’s Black Sea port. The 990-mile
Tengiz-Novorossisk oil pipeline was owned by Kazakstan, Russia, Oman
and 8 oil companies. Chevron held 15% in the 12-partner consortium.
(WSJ, 2/26/01, p.A14)(SFC, 3/27/01, p.C4)
2001 Apr 19, It was reported
that the 2 largest banks planned to merge in a deal that would
extend the reach of Pres. Nazarbayev’s family.
(WSJ, 4/19/01, p.A13)
2001 May 17, A fire in a
26-story hotel in Almaty killed 4 people.
(SFC, 5/18/01, p.D4)
2001 Jun 15, The Shanghai Five
member nations (China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Russia),
having admitted Uzbekistan, signed the Declaration of Shanghai
2001 Sep 24, Kazakstan offered
air and military bases to the US for attacks on Afghanistan.
Tajikistan and Uzbekistan were said to be negotiating use of their
territory by the US.
(SFC, 9/25/01, p.A6)
2001 Oct 21, In Kazakstan a
3-person Russian-French crew blasted off for the Int’l. Space
Station in a Russian Soyuz spacecraft. The crew included Claudie
Haignere, who in 1996 became the 1st Frenchwoman in space.
(SFC, 10/22/01, p.B2)
2001 Nov, Government troops
closed the Karavan Newspaper and raided KTK-TV and other
facilities associated with Rakhat Aliyev, son-in-law to Pres.
Nazarbayev. Aliyev was later sent off as ambassador to Austria.
(WSJ, 9/12/02, p.A1)
2001 Dec 21, Pres. Bush met
with Pres. Nazarbayev of Kazakstan and signed documents “related to
(SFC, 12/22/01, p.A5)
2002 Jan 31, It was reported
that the US and Kazakstan planned a joint venture to use a former
Soviet nuclear weapons plant to process uranium for power plants and
absorb atomic workers.
(WSJ, 1/31/02, p.A1)
2002 Mar, The government
arrested Mr. Ablyazov, a publishing and banking tycoon and leading
government critic. In July he was sentenced to 6 years in prison for
embezzling $3.6 million from the state.
(WSJ, 9/12/02, p.A8)
2002 Apr 28, US Sec. of Defense
Rumsfeld visited Pres. Niyazov in Turkmenistan and Pres. Nazarbayev
(SFC, 4/29/02, p.A9)
2002 May 12, In Kazakstan a
roof collapsed at the Baikonur cosmodrome, Russia’s main space
launch site. 8 workers were feared killed.
(SFC, 5/13/02, p.A6)
2002 May, Kazakhstan and Russia
signed an accord over the northern half of the Caspian Sea.
(WSJ, 6/7/02, p.A8)
2002 Jun 3, A 16-country summit
of Central Asian leaders opened in Almaty, Kazakhstan.
(SFC, 6/3/02, p.A1)
2002 Aug, Galimzhan Zhakianov,
a provincial governor and government critic, was sentenced to 7
years in prison for selling state enterprises at illegitimately low
(WSJ, 9/12/02, p.A8)
2002 Oct 22, A ferry carrying
51 people and a shipment of oil sank in rough weather in the Caspian
Sea. One report said five onboard the ferry were rescued. The
Mercury II freight and passenger ferry was making its way from the
port of Aktau, Kazakhstan, heading southwest to the Azerbaijani
(AP, 10/22/02)(WSJ, 10/23/02, p.A1)
2002 Nov 26, The Astra-1K
satellite was launched atop a Russian Proton rocket from the
Baikonur cosmodrome in the former Soviet republic of Kazakhstan. The
world's largest communications satellite, manufactured by France's
Alcatel Space corporation for Societe Europeene des Satellites of
Luxembourg, was lost after it went into the wrong orbit.
(AP, 11/26/02)(WSJ, 11/27/02, p.A1)
2002 Dec 11, It was reported
that the US had filed allegations that tens of millions of dollars
paid by American oil companies to Kazakstan during the 1990s wound
up in Swiss bank accounts of top Kazakstani officials.
(SFC, 12/11/02, p.A15)
2002 In Kazakhstan former
government employees and businessmen created a new political party,
(Econ, 6/26/04, p.46)
2003 Feb 2, In Kazakstan
Progress M-47 lifted off atop a Soyuz-U rocket to deliver supplies
to the int’l. space station.
(SFC, 2/3/03, p.A5)
2003 Jun 11, Kazakhstan's PM
Imangali Tasmagambetov resigned after a prolonged battle with
parliament over a land reform bill that would allow private land
ownership in the former Soviet republic.
(AP, 6/11/03)(Econ, 6/28/03, p.40)
2003 Jun 20, Kazakhstan's
parliament passed a bill allowing private ownership of land for the
first time in this vast former Soviet republic.
2003 Sep 23, China signed
agreements with Russia and four Central Asian neighbors (Uzbekistan,
Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan) in an effort to strengthen a
7-year-old security alliance and encourage economic links across a
largely undeveloped region.
2003 Oct 18, Russia launched a
Soyuz capsule from Kazakhstan with a 3-man crew for the int'l. space
station. Aboard were an American, a Russian and a Spaniard.
(SSFC, 10/19/03, p.A2)
2003 Oct 28, A Soyuz space
capsule with 3 astronauts landed in Kazakhstan.
(SFC, 10/28/03, p.A1)
2003 Kazakhstan decided to
create a full-fledged navy to help protect its oil interests on the
(Econ, 10/11/03, p.46)
2003 James Giffen, a US oil
consultant, was indicted in the US under the 1977 Foreign Corrupt
Practices Act. He was charged with accepting bribes from US
companies to gain access to Kazakhstan’s Tengiz oil field. Giffen
claimed he was working as a US intelligence asset.
(WSJ, 5/12/08, p.A6)
2004 Jan 9, Russia and
Kazakhstan extended Moscow's lease of the launching pad in Baikonur
until 2050. It served as the only link to the troubled International
2004 Mar 12, Chinese state
media reported that a 1,930-mile railway project to link China and
Europe was announced by Kanat Zhangaskin, vice president of the
Kazakhstan National Railway Co.
2004 May 17, China and
Kazakhstan agreed to build a 744-mile crude oil pipeline to send an
initial 10 million tons of Kazakh oil to Xinjiang by 2006.
(WSJ, 6/17/04, p.A16)
2004 Aug 28, The foreign
ministers of Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan
approved Russian membership to their economic block at talks in
Astana, the Kazakh capital.
2004 Sep 19, Kazakhs chose a
new parliament expected to be dominated by Otan, the party of Pres.
Nursultan Nazarbayev and Asar, a new party run by his daughter. US
backed int’l. monitors called the elections to the 77-seat Mazhilis
(AP, 9/19/04)(WSJ, 9/22/04, p.A1)(Econ, 9/25/04,
2004 Sep, Construction began on
a 620-mile pipeline to take oil from eastern Kazakhstan into China’s
western Xinjiang region.
(Econ, 11/13/04, p.46)
2004 Oct 24, A Soyuz capsule,
carrying 2 Russians and an American, landed in Kazakhstan. The crew
had spent 6 months at the int’l. space station.
(SSFC, 10/24/04, p.A7)
2004 Nov 28, In Kazakhstan 2
powerful blasts rocked the headquarters of President Nursultan
Nazarbayev's ruling Otan (Fatherland) party in Almaty's busy central
2004 Dec 5, In Kazakhstan 23
people died and three others were injured in an explosion at a coal
mine in the Karaganda region.
2005 Jan 1, Kazakhstan was
forecast for 7.9% annual GDP growth with a population at 15 million
and GDP per head at $3,170.
(Econ, 1/8/05, p.91)
2005 Apr 18, The annual Goldman
Environmental Prizes were awarded in San Francisco. Recipients
included Kaisha Atakhanova of Kazakhstan for fighting the import of
(SFC, 4/18/05, p.B2)
2005 May 25, In Azerbaijan
officials opened the first section of a $3.6 billion, 1,100-mile
pipeline that will carry Caspian Sea oil to Western markets. The
presidents of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Georgia and Turkey were on
hand for the ceremony at the Sangachal oil terminal.
(AP, 5/25/05)(WSJ, 5/25/05, p.B2)
2005 Jul 5, An alliance of
Russia, China and central Asian nations called for the US and
coalition members in Afghanistan to set a date for withdrawing from
member states, reflecting growing unease over America's regional
military presence. The Shanghai Cooperation Organization includes
China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
2005 Sep 29, Editors of five
Kazakh opposition newspapers ended a hunger strike after reaching a
deal with a new printing house that would allow them to return to
business after being forced to shut down.
2005 Oct 3, The UN ambassadors
of Britain, France and the US sent a letter emphasizing their
continued opposition to a proposal to create a nuclear-weapons free
zone in Central Asia. The letter, sent to the UN ambassadors of the
five Central Asian nations, says that a draft treaty to create the
zone still does not address their biggest concerns and that further
discussions are needed. It calls for consultations "very soon." The
five nations agreed to the draft text for a Central Asian
nuclear-free zone in February. Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan,
Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan had originally put forward a proposal
for a nuclear-weapon free zone in 1997, but divisions both internal
and external over the text have stalled progress. Moscow claims that
a 1992 treaty that Russia signed with Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and
Tajikistan could allow missiles to be deployed in the region.
2005 Oct 11, US millionaire
scientist Gregory Olsen and a two-man, Russian-American crew
returned from the international space station to Earth in a swift,
bone-jarring descent in Kazakhstan.
2005 Oct 18, It was reported
that a leading pro-opposition news website in Kazakhstan has been
closed by court order and others have experienced technical problems
in the run-up to a presidential election in the Central Asian state.
2005 Nov 12, In Kazakhstan
Zamanbek Nurkadilov (61), an outspoken critic of President Nursultan
Nazarbayev was found shot to death in his home.
2005 Dec 4, Oil-rich Kazakhstan
voted in a presidential election widely expected to give Nursultan
Nazarbayev another seven-year term.
2005 Dec 5, Opposition leaders
in Kazakhstan said that the overwhelming re-election of President
Nursultan Nazarbayev should be declared invalid, and foreign
observers said the balloting did not meet international standards.
2005 Dec 7, Kazakhstan's Pres.
Nursultan Nazarbayev was officially declared the winner of last
weekend's election, while the opposition insisted the vote was
2005 Dec 13, The authorities in
Kazakhstan, angered by a British comedian's satirical portrayal of a
boorish, sexist and racist Kazakh television reporter, confirmed
that they have pulled the plug on his alter ego's Web site. Sacha
Baron Cohen plays Borat in his "Da Ali G Show" and last month he
used the character's Web site www.borat.kz to respond sarcastically
to legal threats from the Central Asian state's Foreign Ministry.
2005 Dec 15, Kazakh President
Nursultan Nazarbayev ceremonially opened the taps of a new pipeline
carrying oil from one of the region's greatest energy powers to one
of its hungriest consumers, China.
2005 Dec 28, The EU launched
the first satellite in its Galileo navigation program, which
officials expect one day will end the continent's reliance on the US
Global Positioning System. A Soyuz rocket, launched from Baikonur,
Kazakhstan, carried the 1st of an expected 30 satellites.
(AP, 12/28/05)(Econ, 7/15/06, p.53)
2006 Jan 6, The Kazakhstan
Parliament voted to ditch the Central Asian state's old national
anthem in favor of "My Kazakhstan," a song written in 1956 and
adapted by Pres. Nazarbayev.
2006 Jan 16, Galymzhan
Zhakiyanov (41), a Kazakh opposition leader jailed for more than
three years, returned home, to the cheers of hundreds of supporters.
The leader of the now-disbanded Democratic Choice party, was
sentenced to seven years in prison in 2002 on abuse-of-office
2006 Feb 11, Altynbek
Sarsenbayev (43), a Kazakh former minister and leading member of the
political opposition, was abducted in Almaty. He was found shot dead
2 days later along with his bodyguard and driver later near Almaty.
Sarsenbaev held a senior position in Alban, a subdivision of the
Elder Horde, one of Kazakhstan’s 3 great traditional tribal
groupings. Relatives and supporters of Sarsenbayev accused
authorities of covering up for those behind the high-profile killing
as 10 defendants faced trial on June 15.
(AP, 2/13/06)(Econ, 2/18/06, p.44)(AP, 6/14/06)
2006 Feb 21, Kazakhstan's
intelligence agency said that five of its employees were among the
six arrested suspects in the Feb 11 murder of Altynbek Sarsenbayev,
a leader of the opposition Nagyz Ak Zhol party.
2006 Feb 22, Kazakhstan's
intelligence chief resigned after several of his subordinates were
arrested on suspicion of involvement in the slaying of an opposition
leader. Erzhan Utembaev, the top administrative official of the
Senate, was arrested for ordering the murder of opposition leader
(AP, 2/22/06)(Econ, 3/4/06, p.40)
2006 Apr 9, A capsule carrying
a Russian, American and Brazilian landed in Kazakhstan following a
weeklong trip to the Int’l. Space Station.
(SSFC, 4/9/06, p.A3)
2006 May 5, Vice President Dick
Cheney traveled to Kazakhstan for talks with President Nursultan
Nazarbayev. Cheney promoted export routes for vast oil and gas
reserves that would bypass Russia and supply the West directly.
(AP, 5/5/06)(SFC, 5/6/06, p.A3)
2006 Jun 15, The Shanghai
Cooperation Organization, a Russian and Chinese-led bloc of Asian
states, said it plans to set up an expert group to boost computer
security and help guard against threats to their regimes from the
Internet. SCO members (China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan,
Tajikistan and Uzbekistan) are mostly authoritarian states that
maintain tight controls on communications technology, including the
2006 Jun 18, Kazakhstan
launched its first satellite into orbit.
(SFC, 6/19/06, p.A3)
2006 Jul 4, The parties of
Kazakhstan's leader and his eldest daughter announced a merger, a
move that tightens President Nursultan Nazarbayev's grip on power.
2006 Jul 14, In Kazakhstan
police under Mayor Imangali Tasmagambetov moved in to destroy the
illegal Shanyrak settlement on the outskirts of Almaty. 30-40 people
on each side were injured. A policeman died after being doused with
petrol and set on fire.
(Econ, 8/5/06, p.39)
2006 Jul 17, The presidents of
Russia and Kazakhstan agreed at the G8 summit to create a joint
venture to process natural gas from Kazakhstan's Karachaganak gas
2006 Sep 9, Five central Asian
countries (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan,
Uzbekistan) signed a nuclear-free zone treaty, but it did not cancel
out a 1992 agreement to allow Russia to transport and deploy nuclear
weapons there under certain circumstances.
(SSFC, 9/10/06, p.A18)
2006 Sep 11, Kazakhstan hosted
the Second Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions in
2006 Sep 18, Anousheh Ansari
(40), an Iranian-American telecommunications entrepreneur, took off
on a Russian rocket bound for the international space station,
becoming the world's first paying female space tourist. Aboard the
space station, an oxygen generator overheated and spilled a toxic
irritant, forcing the crew to don masks and gloves in the first
emergency ever declared aboard the 8-year-old orbiting outpost.
2006 Sep 20, In northern
Kazakhstan a methane explosion tore through a coal mine, killing 41
miners. Seven miners were pulled out alive and hospitalized after it
ripped through the Lenin mine in the town of Shakhtinsk.
(AP, 9/20/06)(AP, 9/21/06)
2006 Sep 28, It was reported
that the industrial city of Shymkent, Kazakhstan, was reeling after
learning that at least 63 children had contracted AIDS through
medical negligence many blame on corruption and the illicit sale of
blood. At least five infected toddlers had died after receiving
injections or blood transfusions. Parents said regional health
officials were aware of the outbreak in March, and have been trying
to cover it up by pulling pages from the infected toddlers'
treatment records to eliminate any mention of blood transfusions.
2006 Sep 29, Pres. Bush met
with Kazakhstan’s Pres. Nazarbayev and praised him. The meeting was
criticized as an unseemly gesture to an oil-rich ruler who tolerates
(WSJ, 9/30/06, p.A1)
2006 Oct 26, China’s state
controlled Citic Group said it has reached an agreement to buy an
oil field in Kazakhstan from Canada’s nations Energy for $1.9
(WSJ, 10/27/06, p.A10)
2006 Nov 10, Kazakhstan's
President Nursultan Nazarbayev said the ruling Otan Party would
merge with the pro-government Civic Party in what the opposition
described as part of efforts to ensure his grip on power in upcoming
2006 Nov 10, Asian nations
reached their first international agreement to implement what has
been dubbed the "Iron Silk Road." Armenia, Azerbaijan, Cambodia,
China, Indonesia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Laos, Russia, South Korea,
Turkey and seven other nations agreed to meet at least every two
years to identify vital rail routes, coordinate standards and
financing and plan upgrades and expansions, among other measures.
The UN first conceived the Trans-Asian Railway Network in 1960.
2006 Nov 3, The film “Borat:
Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of
Kazakhstan” opened nationwide in the US.
2006 Dec 3, Andris Piebalgs,
the EU Energy Commissioner from Latvia, signed an accord on nuclear
cooperation with Kazakhstan. The EU hoped to increase Kazakhstan
uranium sales to the EU from 3% to 20%.
(WSJ, 12/4/06, p.A6)
2006 The mineral firm Eurasian
Natural Resources Corporation PLC (ENRC) listed for public trading
in London. The firm, partly owned by the government of Kazakhstan,
was founded by three central Asians who bought ex-Soviet factories
at discount prices and quickly became billionaires. ENRC was formed
in 1994, listed on the London Stock Exchange in 2006 and delisted
after a near six-year spell in November 2013. A secondary listing
and subsequent de-listing also took place on the Kazakhstan Stock
2006 Kazakhstan’s population of
15.2 million currently included 59% native Kazakhs and 26% Russians.
(Econ, 12/23/06, p.59)
2007 Jan 8, Daniyal Akhmetov,
the PM of oil-rich Kazakhstan, resigned in the wake of criticism of
his performance by the heavy-handed president of the Central Asian
country. Nazarbayev, who has ruled Kazakhstan as president since its
independence in 1991, regularly replaced his prime ministers as he
tried to secure his position and balance interests of various
powerful elite groups.
2007 Jan, In Kazakhstan police
arrested a manager of the Atyrau Balyk cannery, charging him and 3
colleagues, who had fled to Russia, with poaching. The cannery had a
monopoly in exporting Kazakhstan’s CITES-approved quota of sturgeon.
An expert estimated that poaching on the Ural River could eliminate
the sturgeon in 5-10 years.
(SFC, 6/24/07, p.A2)
2007 Apr 7, Emergency officials
said 247 dead seals have washed up on the shores of the Caspian Sea
in Kazakhstan in the past week.
2007 Apr 7, A Russian rocket
carrying the American billionaire who helped develop Microsoft Word
roared into the night skies over Kazakhstan, sending Charles Simonyi
and two cosmonauts soaring into orbit on a two-day journey to the
international space station.
2007 Apr 21, Charles Simonyi,
an American billionaire who paid $25 million for a 13-day trip to
outer space, returned to Earth in a space capsule that also carried
a cosmonaut and an American astronaut, making a soft landing on the
2007 May 2, Kazakhstan’s
Emergencies Agency said hundreds of dead seals have washed up on its
Caspian Sea shoreline in the past several days, bringing the total
number of the animals found dead along the shoreline in recent weeks
2007 May 12, The leaders of
Kazakhstan, Russia, and Turkmenistan reached a landmark pipeline
deal that will strengthen Moscow's control over Central Asia's
energy export routes.
2007 May 16, Kazakhstan's
President Nursultan Nazarbayev proposed limited political reforms in
the oil-rich country he has headed since the Soviet era, including
shortening the presidential term from seven years to five and
strengthening the powers of parliament.
2007 May 18, Kazakhstan's
veteran leader Nursultan Nazarbayev was in effect declared
president-for-life in a move condemned by the nation's opposition as
2007 May 21, Kazakhstan's Pres.
Nazarbayev (66) approved a constitutional amendment that waives
presidential term limits and allows him to seek the top post
(AP, 5/22/07)(Econ, 5/26/07, p.42)
2007 May 26, Kazakh President
Nursultan Nazarbayev sacked his son-in-law, diplomat Rakhat Aliyev,
after Aliyev challenged the Kazakh leader by declaring he intended
to run for the presidency.
2007 May 28, Kazakh authorities
issued an international arrest warrant for the powerful son-in-law
of President Nursultan Nazarbayev who faces abduction charges and
has publicly criticized the longtime leader.
2007 Jun 1, Rakhat Aliyev, the
Kazakh ambassador to Austria until he was dismissed on May 26, was
arrested for alleged involvement in the suspected kidnapping of two
senior managers of a bank he controls. He appealed to Austrian
authorities not to extradite him to his homeland to face kidnapping
2007 Jun 11, Officials gathered
in Kazakhstan for a 2-day meeting of the Global Initiative to Combat
Nuclear Terrorism. 37 of 51 Global Initiative partner nations, along
with the IAEA and European Union as observers, assessed current
plans to enhance the partnership capacity of Global Initiative
nations and discussed new ways to combat nuclear smuggling and other
terrorist acts. 2 days of talks produced a 10-year action plan.
(Econ, 6/16/07, p.68)(www.usembassy.kz/)
2007 Jun 27, A Kazakhstan court
convicted 21 medical workers for their roles in infecting scores of
children with the virus that causes AIDS in a case that has outraged
the country. Health officials said 118 children and 14 mothers have
been confirmed as contracting HIV. The Shymkent district court gave
suspended sentences to five senior health officials. 16 medical
workers were sentenced to prison sentences of up to five years.
2007 Jul, Authorities in
Kazakhstan slapped a $609 million fine on a Chevron-led consortium
developing the Tengiz oil field. The Kazakh ecological ministry
cited environmental breaches stemming from the stockpiling of sulfur
between 2003 and 2006. The consortium stripped sulfur from Tengiz
oil, which is laced with hydrogen sulfide gas, and stored it as
pellets in massive facilities, for later use in fertilizer.
(WSJ, 10/4/07, p.A9)
2007 Aug 8, An Austrian federal
court rejected Kazakhstan's request to have its ex-ambassador to
Austria, a former son-in-law of the Central Asian nation's
autocratic president, extradited to face kidnapping charges in his
2007 Aug 17, The six members of
the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) held their first joint
maneuvers on Russian land in a demonstration of their growing
military ties and a shared desire to counter US global clout. The
presidents of Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and
Uzbekistan attended the unprecedented joint military exercises in
Chelyabinsk near the Kazakh border.
2007 Aug 18, Kazakhs headed to
the polls in parliamentary elections seen as a key test of
authoritarian Pres. Nursultan Nazarbayev's pledge to boost democracy
in this oil-rich nation. Nur Otan, the party of President Nursultan
Nazarbayev, won all 98 available seats in the lower parliament. The
tally was quickly condemned by the opposition.
(AFP, 8/18/07)(AP, 8/19/07)(Econ, 8/25/07, p.42)
2007 Aug, China’s President
visited Kazakhstan. Soon after it was announced that a new oil
pipeline would be built from Kazakhstan to China, and that a new gas
pipeline linking Turkmenistan with China would run through
(Econ, 8/25/07, p.54)
2007 Sep 6, An unmanned Russian
rocket carrying a Japanese communications satellite malfunctioned
after liftoff, sending parts crashing in an uninhabited part of
Kazakhstan and triggering concerns about environmental damage.
2007 Oct 10, A Russian rocket
blasted off from Kazakhstan's Baikonur launch pad, carrying 3
astronauts to the international space station. Sheikh Muszaphar
Shukor, an orthopedic surgeon and university lecturer from Kuala
Lumpur, left Earth alongside Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko and
American astronaut Peggy Whitson. Shukor was selected from among
11,000 Malaysian candidates to fly aboard the ISS in a deal his
government arranged with Russia as part of a $1 billion purchase of
Russian fighter jets. Whitson will be the first woman to command the
(Reuters, 9/20/07)(AP, 10/10/07)(SFC, 10/11/07,
2007 Oct 20, In Kazakhstan the
opposition staged a demonstration in Almaty against rising prices as
people hoarded food supplies and emptied shops.
(Econ, 10/27/07, p.52)
2007 Nov 30, The Organization
for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OECD) awarded its rotating
chairmanship in 2010 to Kazakhstan.
(Econ, 12/8/07, p.50)
2007 Corruption ratings for
this year by Transparency International placed Kazakhstan at 150th
out of 180 countries.
(Econ, 4/12/08, p.49)
2007 US federal officials
alleged that $84 million held in Swiss bank accounts stem from
bribes paid by US companies to Kazakhstan’s president and other top
officials for access to energy reserves. The money was frozen as an
(WSJ, 5/12/08, p.A6)
2008 Jan 11, In Kazakhstan a
methane gas explosion ripped through a coal mine, owned by
ArcelorMittal, the world's largest steelmaker, killing at least 30
(AP, 1/11/08)(AFP, 1/13/08)
2008 Jan 14, Kazakhstan’s state
oil company Kazmunaigas said it has ended a long-running conflict
with a group of Western majors over ownership of the Kashagan oil
field, one of the world's largest new deposits.
2008 Feb 1, The US promised
Kazakhstan to help it bring its armed forces up to NATO standards in
a new military cooperation pact certain to irritate Russia.
2008 Apr 2, In Kazakhstan
Zhaksybek Kulekeyev, a former government minister and head of the
state railway company, was formally charged with taking a $100,000
(Econ, 4/12/08, p.49)
2008 Apr 8, A Russian capsule
carrying South Korea's first astronaut and two cosmonauts blasted
off from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, en route to the
international space station.
2008 Apr 15, Kazakhstan joined
other Black Sea grain exporters in curbing shipments to combat
double-digit inflation. Wheat exports were suspended until Sep 10.
Kazakhstan will become the world’s 5th largest wheat exporter this
year, shipping half its record 2007 crop.
(WSJ, 4/16/08, p.A8)
2008 Apr 19, In northern
Kazakhstan a Soyuz capsule, carrying South Korean bioengineer Yi
So-yeon, American astronaut Peggy Whitson and Russian flight
engineer Yuri Malenchenko, landed 260 miles off its mark.
2008 Jun 28, Ruslana Korshunova
(20), a European Vogue cover model, fell to her death from her
Manhattan apartment building in an apparent suicide. She was
originally from the former Soviet republic of Kazakhstan.
2008 Jul 21, Rakhat Aliyev, the
ex-son-in-law of Kazakhstan Pres. Nazarbayev, accused the president
of diverting billions in state assets and other corruption.
(WSJ, 7/22/08, p.A1)
2008 Oct 5, Abu Dhabi’s
Mubadala Development Co. and Texas-based ConocoPhillips said they
have signed a deal with Kazakhstan’s national oil company to drill
in a potentially lucrative region in the Caspian Sea.
(SFC, 10/6/08, p.D1)
2008 Oct 12, A Soyuz spacecraft
with two Americans and a Russian on board lifted off from Kazakhstan
for the international space station. The Soyuz TMA-13 capsule
carried American computer game millionaire Richard Garriott, US
astronaut Michael Fincke and Russian cosmonaut Yuri Lonchakov.
2008 Oct 24, A Soyuz capsule
carrying an American and two Russians touched down on target in
Kazakhstan after a descent from the international space station,
safely delivering the first two men to follow their fathers into
2009 Jan 12, Kazakh PM Karim
Masimov told his ministers to start personal blogs to get them
closer to the people of the former Soviet state.
2009 Jan 15, Kazakh lawmakers
approved legislation to guarantee at least two political parties are
represented in parliament, a move designed to improve the Central
Asian nation's tarnished democratic credentials.
2009 Jan 20, The head of US
Central Command said the US has struck deals with Russia and
neighboring countries allowing it to transport supplies to American
troops in Afghanistan through their territory. US officials have
said that one likely route is overland from Russia through
Kazakhstan and on through Uzbekistan using trucks and trains.
Another possible route is via Azerbaijan across the Caspian Sea to
the Kazakh port of Aktau and then through Uzbekistan.
2009 Jan, In Kazakhstan
newspaper editor Ramazan Yesergepov was arrested and charged with
revealing state secrets in a move that has tarnished the ex-Soviet
nation's democratic credentials as it prepared to assume the
chairmanship of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in
Europe (OSCE). His arrest came after he published correspondence in
the small-circulation weekly Alma-Ata Info that appeared to show
collusion in corruption between a Kazakh businessman and the
National Security Committee, the successor agency to the KGB. On
August 8 Yesergepov was sentenced to three years in prison.
2009 Feb 4, Kazakhstan allowed
its currency to devalue 25% in an effort to protect its foreign
exchange and gold reserves amidst falling oil prices.
(WSJ, 2/5/09, p.A6)
2009 Feb 4, Russia sought to
bolster its security alliance with six other ex-Soviet nations
(Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and
Uzbekistan) by forming a joint rapid reaction force in a continuing
effort to curb US influence in energy-rich Central Asia.
2009 Feb 10, An unmanned
Russian cargo ship lifted off from Kazakhstan carrying supplies and
a space suit to the international space station and its three-member
crew. American astronauts Michael Fincke and Sandra Magnus are
aboard the station along with Russian Yuri Lonchakov. The crew size
will be doubled to six members later this year.
2009 Feb 26, Kazakhstan
announced it was pulling out of the Central Asian power grid to
protect its energy supplies, a move that forced rolling blackouts
and electricity rationing on Kyrgyzstan, its tiny, power-starved
2009 Feb, Kazakhstan
nationalized BTA Bank, the largest bank in the country. Chairman
Mukhtar Ablyazov was stripped of his position and left the country
for exile in London. Over a dozen more bank managers were arrested
and awaited trial for alleged racketeering and money laundering.
(Econ, 6/20/09, p.40)
2009 Mar 26, In Kazakhstan a
Soyuz capsule carrying a Russian-American crew and US billionaire
space tourist Charles Simonyi blasted off for the international
2009 Apr 8, A Russian
spacecraft carrying a crew of three including US billionaire space
tourist Charles Simonyi landed safely in Kazakhstan.
2009 Apr 23, A Kazakh court
jailed the publisher of an opposition newspaper for failing to pay
damages in a libel case that government critics contend is
2009 May 7, Russian Mission
Control said the unmanned Progress M-02M lifted off from Kazakhstan
on schedule and should dock with the int’l. space station on May 12.
2009 May 27, A Russian space
capsule, carrying Canadian Bob Thirsk, Russian Roman Romanenko and
Belgian Frank De Winne, blasted off from Kazakhstan for a 2 day
journey to the ISS.
(SFC, 5/28/09, p.A2)
2009 May, In Kazakhstan Mukhtar
Dzhakishev, head of the state nuclear agency (Kazatomprom) and
friend of recently deposed banker Mukhtar Ablyazov, was arrested and
charged with stealing uranium deposits. 8 of his associates were
(Econ, 6/20/09, p.40)
2009 Jun 16, China’s Pres. Hu
Jintao announced a $10 billion loan to the Shanghai Cooperation
Organization, founded in 2001. The SCO grouped China, Russia,
Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.
(http://tinyurl.com/pr5v65j)(Econ, 1/30/10, p.51)
2009 Jul 19, In
Kazakhstan more than 5,000 ethnic Uighurs rallied
in Almaty to protest China's use of deadly force to quash Uighur
protests this month.
2009 Jul 24, In Iran a Russian
Ilyushin-62 plane, operated by Tehran-based Aria Airlines and
carrying 153 passengers and crew, skidded off the runway and hit a
wall while landing in the northeastern city of Mashhad. 13 of the 16
people killed in the crash were members of the crew, 9 of them from
Kazakhstan. The plane landed at high speed and the tires failed.
2009 Sep 3, In Kazakhstan a
court convicted Yevgenii Zhovtis of vehicular manslaughter and
sentenced him to 4 years in prison. Zhovtis, Kazakhstan’s best known
human rights activists, claimed he had been blinded by the lights of
an oncoming car when he hit a hit and killed a pedestrian on a
country road late at night.
(Econ, 9/12/09, p.46)
2009 Sep 13, In southeast
Kazakhstan 37 people were killed when a fire ripped through a
decrepit drugs treatment facility in Taldykorgan.
2009 Sep 30, In Kazakhstan
Canadian circus billionaire Guy Laliberte blasted off in a Russian
Soyuz spaceship to become the world's seventh space tourist.
2009 Oct 6, In Kazakhstan
French President Nicolas Sarkozy scored a diplomatic coup during a
visit, overseeing an agreement to allow military hardware for French
forces fighting in Afghanistan to pass through Kazakh territory and
clinching a raft of lucrative energy deals.
2009 Oct 11, The Russian Soyuz
capsule carrying Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberte and two
other space travelers landed safely in Kazakhstan, ending the
entertainment tycoon's mirthful space odyssey.
2009 Dec 1, In Kazakhstan
astronauts from Canada and Belgium and a Russian cosmonaut landed
safely, wrapping up a six-month stint on the International Space
2009 Dec 12, In Thailand 4
Kazakhs and a Belarusian were detained and their New Zealand
registered aircraft impounded after it landed in the Thai capital
with tons of war weaponry on board that originated in North Korea.
The Ilyushin 76 transport from Kazakhstan was allegedly traveling
from North Korea to Sri Lanka when it asked to land in Bangkok to
refuel. According to a flight plan seen by arms trafficking
researchers, the aircraft was chartered by Hong Kong-based Union Top
Management Ltd. to fly oil industry spare parts from Pyongyang to
Tehran, Iran, with several other stops, including Bangkok, Colombo
in Sri Lanka, Azerbaijan and Ukraine. A New Zealand shell company,
SP Trading Ltd., had leased the airplane.
(AP, 12/12/09)(AP, 12/23/09)(AP, 1/22/10)
2009 Dec 14, China’s Pres. Hu
Jintao and the leaders of Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan
gathered at the Saman-Depe gas field in Turkmenistan and inaugurated
a 1,139-mile gas pipeline running through Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan
to China’s Xinjiang province.
2009 Dec 20, A Russian Soyuz
TMA-17 rocket blasted off from a cosmodrome in Kazakhstan carrying
an American, a Russian and a Japanese astronaut to the int’l. space
(SFC, 12/21/09, p.A2)
2009 Dec 22, In Kazakhstan
journalist Gennady Pavlyuk (51) of Kyrgyzstan died six days after
being thrown from a 6th story window in central Almaty.
(Econ, 1/9/10, p.45)
2009 Dilip Hiro authored
“Inside Central Asia: A Political and Cultural History of
Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkey
(Econ, 9/26/09, p.98)
2009 Daniel Metcalfe authored
“Out of Steppe: The Lost Peoples of Central Asia.” He describes such
people as the Karakalpak in Uzbekistan, the Yaghnobi in people of
Tajikistan, the Jews of Bukhara and the Germans of Kazakhstan.
(Econ, 5/16/09, p.91)
2009 A new oil pipeline allowed
Kazakhstan to export oil to China.
(Econ, 7/27/19, p.18)
2010 Jan 27, NATO's top officer
said that Russia had agreed to boost cooperation with the alliance
in Afghanistan, including opening more transit routes for supplies
to international troops and helping service Soviet-built helicopters
used by the security forces. NATO said it had finalized an agreement
with Kazakhstan to open the last leg on an overland route to
Afghanistan from Europe via Russia, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan,
offering an alternative to the one through Pakistan.
(AP, 1/27/10)(AP, 1/28/10)
2010 Feb 11, Thai prosecutors
said they have dropped charges against the five-man crew of an
aircraft accused of smuggling weapons from North Korea, saying the
men, arrested on Dec 12, might be guilty but would be deported to
preserve good relations with their home countries. The decision was
made after the governments of Belarus and Kazakhstan contacted the
Thai Foreign Ministry and requested the crew's release so they can
be investigated at home.
2010 Mar 11, In Kazakhstan a
dam at the Kyzyl-Agash reservoir in the eastern Almaty region
ruptured, pouring water into several nearby villages and affecting
3,000 residents. A 2nd dam was washed away in the nearby Karatalsky
district. Emergency officials said heavy rain and melting snow have
caused severe floods across a region of Kazakhstan neighboring
China, flooding villages and claiming at least 35 lives.
(AP, 3/12/10)(AFP, 3/12/10)(AP, 3/13/10)
2010 Mar 18, Astronauts from
the US and Russia landed safely in northern Kazakhstan's chilly
steppes after spending almost six months on the International Space
2010 Apr 2, In southern
Kazakhstan a Russian rocket carrying 2 Russian and one American
astronauts blasted off, kicking off a tightly packed schedule at the
International Space Station in the coming days.
2010 Apr 8, The European Space
Agency launched CryoSat 2 on a Russian rocket from the Baikonur
Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The satellite was designed to measure the
effects of climate change on the Earth’s polar ice caps.
(SFC, 4/9/10, p.A2)
2010 Apr 15, Deposed Kyrgyzstan
President Kurmanbek Bakiyev' left the country for neighboring
Kazakhstan, just hours after gunfire erupted at a rally where he was
speaking to supporters.
2010 Apr 24, A Russian Proton
rocket carrying a US AMC 49 telecommunications satellite was
launched into orbit from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.
2010 May 12, Kazakh lawmakers
approved amendments to the constitution that will give President
Nursultan Nazarbayev lifetime immunity from prosecution for acts
committed during his rule and the right to approve important
national and foreign policies after he retires.
2010 Jun 16, In Kazakhstan 2 US
and a Russian crewmate blasted off for the int’l. space station in a
Soyuz TMA-19 spacecraft. A woman in the US crew doubled the ISS
female crew to an all time high.
(SFC, 6/16/10, p.A2)(SFC, 6/18/10, p.A10)
2010 Jul 5, Belarus signed a
customs union with Russia and Kazakhstan.
(Econ, 7/24/10, p.53)
2010 Jul 13, Kazakhstan’s
cabinet approved a crude-oil export tax of $20 per metric ton.
Chevron, based in San Ramon, Ca., owns 50% of Tengiz Chevroil, which
operates the biggest field in Kazakhstan.
(SFC, 7/14/10, p.D2)
2010 Sep 14, The New York-based
Committee to Protect Journalists said Kazakhstan's failure to
improve media freedom has damaged its international standing and the
situation is getting worse, not better.
2010 Sep 21, The UN’s World
Health Organization (WHO) said 40 young Europeans are murdered every
day, with Russia, Albania and Kazakhstan having the highest homicide
rates for people aged 10-29.
2010 Sep 25, A Russian Soyuz
space capsule landed in Kazakhstan returning 3 astronauts from a
6-month mission to the Int’l. Space Station.
(SSFC, 9/26/10, p.A5)
2010 Sep, Kazakhstan completed
a restructure of its banking system, brought on its banking crisis
in Feb, 2009. The majority of creditors of BTA Bank shared the pain.
(Econ, 11/27/10, p.82)
2010 Oct 7, In Kazakhstan a
Russian Soyuz TMA-01M rocket blasted off for the Int’l. Space
Station carrying one American and 2 Russian astronauts.
(SFC, 10/8/10, p.A2)
2010 Nov 30, US Secretary of
State Hillary Clinton touched down in Astana, Kazakhstan, to attend
the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE)
summit on a trip through Central Asia that will also see her visit
Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, as well as Bahrain.
2010 Dec 1, Kazakhstan began
hosting a 2-day summit of the OSCE, the first in 11 years, seeking
to revamp the organisation's ability to react to security crises.
(AFP, 12/1/10)(Econ, 12/4/10, p.54)
2010 Dec 1, Belarus announced
that it will give up its stockpile of material used to make nuclear
weapons by 2012. The arrangement was announced on the sidelines of
an international security meeting in the Central Asian nation of
Kazakhstan by US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and her
Belarussian counterpart, Sergei Martynov.
2010 Dec 16, Astronauts from
the US, Russia and Italy blasted off in a Soyuz spacecraft from
Kazakhstan on a mission to the Int’l. Space Station.
(SFC, 12/16/10, p.A2)
2010 Dec 23, In Kazakhstan a
forum of 900 people in Ust-Kamenogorsk put forward an initiative to
extend via referendum the president’s term in office until 2020 and
to cancel the next presidential election, due in 2012.
(Econ, 1/8/11, p.40)
2011 Feb 3, Kazakhstan
President Nursultan Nazarbayev signed into law a measure allowing
early presidential elections. The measure allows for the vote to be
held on two months' notice. The constitutional court rejected a
petition drive for a referendum on keeping him in power for at least
2011 Feb 4, Kazakhstan Pres.
Nazarbayev called early presidential elections for April 3, an
accelerated timetable that gives the country's weak opposition
forces little time to prepare.
2011 Mar 15, In Kazakhstan
several hundred people rallied near the presidential palace to urge
the government to assist homeowners battling repossessions, and a
few dozen were detained by police.
2011 Mar 16, NASA astronaut
Scott Kelly and two Russian cosmonauts landed safely in central
Kazakhstan after a five-month stint on the International Space
Station. They left behind Russian cosmonaut Dmitry Kondratyev,
Italy's Paolo Nespoli and NASA astronaut Catherine Coleman, who are
due to return to earth in about three months.
2011 Apr 3, Kazakhstan held
elections. A heavy turnout looked set to overwhelmingly reaffirm the
domination President Nursultan Nazarbayev (70). Provisional figures
the next day showed Nazarbayev with 95% of the vote. Opposition
politicians had called for a boycott and described the election as a
(AP, 4/3/11)(SFC, 4/4/11, p.A2)
2011 May 3, Kazakhstan ratified
an agreement with the United States to allow the air transit of
supplies and personnel destined for operations in Afghanistan.
2011 Jun 7, A Russian Soyuz
spacecraft took off from Kazakhstan, bound for the International
Space Station. In the three-man crew were Russian cosmonaut Sergei
Volkov, American astronaut Michael Fossum, and Japanese astronaut
Satoshi Furukawa of Japan's JAXA space agency. The trio will spend
six months on the space station.
(AP, 6/7/11)(Reuters, 6/7/11)
2011 Jul 11, Kazakhstan police
said nine gunmen have been killed in a special operation to detain
an armed group suspected of being behind the killing of three
Interior Ministry officers in June. One policeman died during last
week's raid in the village of Kenkiyak. 16 prisoners died when they
blew themselves up after an abortive attempt to break out a jail in
the southern town of Balkhash. One prison guard was killed in the
(AP, 7/11/11)(AP, 7/12/11)
2011 Sep 3, In Tajikistan
leaders from eight former Soviet states (Armenia, Azerbaijan,
Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan)
gathered to celebrate enduring cooperation over the two decades
since their nations collectively gained independence, but mutual
acrimony and recriminations cast a shadow over the event.
2011 Sep 16, A Russian Soyuz
capsule carrying 3 astronauts, an American and two Russians, landed
in Kazakhstan following a stay at the Int’l. Space Station.
(SFC, 9/17/11, p.A2)
2011 Oct 13, Kazakhstan's Pres.
Nursultan Nazarbayev approved a bill tightening registration rules
for religious groups that has been described by critics as a blow to
freedom of belief in the ex-Soviet nation.
2011 Oct 30, An unmanned
Russian cargo ship headed for the Int’l. Space Station after it
launched from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.
(SFC, 10/31/11, p.A2)
2011 Oct, Kazakhstan’s
President Nazarbayev hired a team under British former prime
minister Tony Blair to counsel him on reform and a transition to
(Econ, 12/20/14, p.91)
2011 Nov 12, In Kazakhstan a
radical Islamist, identified only as Kariyev, killed 7 people,
including 5 law enforcement officers, in a rampage the southern city
of Taraz. The suspect blew himself up as officers moved in to arrest
2011 Nov 14, Two Russians and
an American blasted off from Kazakhstan to the ISS orbiting
laboratory on a Soyuz-FG rocket, Russia's first manned mission since
the failed launch of the unmanned Progress supply ship in August
temporarily grounded its Soyuz rockets.
2011 Nov 18, In Kazakhstan US
Embassy spokesman Jon Larsen said the Peace Corps will be leaving
the country. Volunteers posted messages online linking the move to
rapes and other attacks. The Peace Corps has sent around 1,000
volunteers to serve in the country since it started operations there
2011 Nov 21, A Russian Soyuz
capsule with 3 astronauts returned from the Int’l. Space Station
landed in Kazakhstan after spending 165 days in space.
(SFC, 11/22/11, p.A2)
2011 Dec 1, In Kazakhstan a new
5.2 mile subway line officially opened in Almaty. Work had begun in
1988 under Soviet rule.
(SFC, 12/3/11, p.A2)
2011 Dec 16, In Kazakhstan at
least 15 people died in a clash with police in the city of
Zhanaozen. The city had been the site of a sit-in by oil workers
seeking higher wages. Many of those workers were fired over the
summer. Opposition leader Vladimir Kozlov was later jailed on
trumped-up charges of fomenting the turmoil.
(AP, 12/18/11)(Econ, 12/22/12, p.57)(Econ,
2011 Dec 17, Kazakhstan's
President Nursultan Nazarbayev imposed a three-week state of
emergency in the oil town of Zhanaozen, where at least 15 people
were killed a day earlier in a clash between police and
demonstrators. In the southwest police opened fire on rioters in the
town of Shetpe, leaving one person dead and 11 wounded. Two days of
rioting left 16 people dead.
(AP, 12/17/11)(AP, 12/18/11)(Econ, 12/31/11,
p.26)(Econ, 12/22/12, p.57)
2011 Dec 26, Kazakhstan's
President Nursultan Nazarbayev sacked his billionaire son-in-law,
Timur Kulibayev, from his post as head of the sovereign wealth fund.
(Econ, 12/31/11, p.26)
2012 Jan 15, Kazakhstan held
elections that were expected to slightly broaden democratic
representation in parliament's rubber-stamp lower house. Opposition
parties that were most likely to pose a robust challenge to the
ruling Nur Otan party have been either disqualified from competing
or rendered largely powerless. President Nazarbayev's Nur Otan party
won 80.7 percent of the vote, with two other parties achieving
slightly more than 7 percent each, thereby clearing the threshold to
(AP, 1/15/12)(AP, 1/16/12)
2012 Jan 16, International
election monitors said that Kazakhstan's parliamentary election
failed to meet the fundamental principles of a democratic vote.
2012 Jan 28, In Kazakhstan some
300 opposition activists staged a rare rally in Almaty, the
commercial capital, to protest recent elections and the violent
suppression of a group of oil workers. Hours later, speakers at the
rally were handed two-week jail sentences for holding the
2012 Feb 2, Kyrgyzstan's
government said it will reprimand officials responsible for allowing
contaminated radioactive coal to be imported into the country from
2012 Feb 24, A British legal
filing indicated that fugitive oligarch Mukhtar Ablyazov (48),
accused of embezzling at least $5.0 billion (3.2 billion pounds)
from his former Kazakh bank BTA, is believed to have fled Britain on
a coach bound for France to escape a jail sentence for contempt of
2012 Apr 20, In western
Kazakhstan journalist Lukpan Akhmedyarov was stabbed and shot in an
overnight attack that his colleagues say may have been motivated by
his critical reporting about the Central Asian nation's
2012 Apr 27, In Kazakhstan a
Soyuz space capsule landed with 2 Russians and an American ending
their 163-day stay at the Int’l. Space Station.
(SFC, 4/28/12, p.A2)
2012 May 15, In southern
Kazakhstan a three-man crew, NASA astronaut Joseph Acaba and Russian
cosmonauts Gennady Padalka and Sergei Revin, blasted off from the
Baikonur space center on board a Soyuz craft for a
four-and-half-month stay at the International Space Station. Russian
charges for use of the Soyuz were $450 million per year.
(AP, 5/15/12)(Econ, 5/5/12, p.77)
2012 Jun 4, NATO concluded
agreements with Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan to allow it to
evacuate military equipment from Afghanistan and completely bypass
(SFC, 6/5/12, p.A2)
2012 Jun 5, Kazakhstan's
interior minister said a border guard who went missing after the
death of 14 fellow soldiers at a remote frontier outpost last week
has been detained and is being questioned.
2012 Jul 1, A Russian Soyuz
space capsule landed in Kazakhstan bringing an end to a 193-day
mission for American astronaut Donald Petit, Dutchman Andre Kuipers
and Russian Oleg Kononenko.
(SFC, 7/2/12, p.A2)
2012 Jul 15, A Russian Soyuz
rocket blasted off from Kazakhstan with an international crew of
three toward the International Space Station in a mission testing
the reliability of Russia's crisis-prone space program. On board
were NASA's Sunita Williams, Japan's Akihiko Hoshide and Yury
Malenchenko of Russia.
2012 Aug 6, Russia launched an
unmanned Proton-M rocked carrying Russian and Indonesian
communications satellites. A secondary booster module failed shortly
after launch from Kazakhstan.
(SFC, 8/8/12, p.A2)
2012 Sep 24, Kazakhstan’s PM
Karim Masimov resigned after leading the oil-rich Central Asian
nation for more than five years and shepherding its economy through
the global financial crises.
2012 Sep, In Kazakhstan Serik
Akhmetov was named as prime minister.
2012 Oct 23, A Russian Soyuz
spacecraft launched in Kazakhstan carrying a 3-man crew, including
an American and 2 Russians, to the Intl. Space Station.
(SFC, 10/24/12, p.A2)
2012 Nov 22, Kazakhstan's
police raided the offices of a news website and took steps to halt
the publication of a newspaper critical of the government, in what a
media watchdog group says was an "unprecedented offensive" against
2012 Nov, Kazakhstan was for
the first time elected to sit on the UN Human Rights Council.
(Econ, 12/22/12, p.57)
2012 Dec 1, Kazakhstan observed
a new holiday lauding President Nazarbayev (72), part of a growing
cult of personality around the leader of the former Soviet republic.
The First President's Day marked the anniversary of Nazarbayev's
first election in 1991.
2012 Dec 11, A Kazakhstan court
convicted border guard Vladislav Chelakh (19) of killing 14 of his
comrades along with a park ranger and sentenced to life in prison.
2012 Dec 14, Kazakhstan's Pres.
Nursultan Nazarbayev (72) announced a raft of reforms for this
energy-rich, authoritarian state, ranging from having more direct
local and regional elections to imposing the use of the Latin
alphabet for the Kazakh language.
2012 Dec 19, In Kazakhstan a
Soyuz spacecraft carrying an American, a Russian and a Canadian
lifted off for the Int’l. Space Station for a 2-day journey and
(SFC, 12/20/12, p.A2)
2012 Dec 25, Kazakhstan's
acting border service chief Col. Turganbek Stambekov was among 27
people killed in a military plane crash, a Russian-made An-72, near
the southern city of Shymkent. He was appointed in June to deal with
the aftermath of a mass killing involving a conscript.
2013 Jan 29, In Kazakhstan a
SCAT passenger jet carrying at least 20 people crashed in heavy fog
near Almaty, killing all on board.
2013 Feb 27, Saeed Jalili,
Iran’s top official at diplomatic talks, said negotiations in
Kazakhstan with world powers over how to curb Iran's nuclear program
have reached a "turning point" for the better at the close of two
days of discussions aimed at preventing Tehran from building an
2013 Mar 16, A Soyuz space
capsule carrying an American and 2 Russians landed in Kazakhstan.
The men had spent 144 days on the Int’l. Space Station. 3 astronauts
remained on the ISS.
(SSFC, 3/17/13, p.A4)
2013 Mar 19, An English judge
said oligarch Mukhtar Ablyazov, who has been in hiding since he was
sentenced to jail for contempt of court last year, organised a
complex fraud to embezzle billions of dollars from Kazakh bank BTA.
2013 Mar 29, A Soyuz capsule
carrying 3 astronauts docked with the Int’l. Space Station (ISS)
after traveling just 6 hours from launch in Kazakhstan.
(SFC, 3/30/13, p.A3)
2013 Apr 5, In Kazakhstan talks
began seeking to find common ground between Iran and a group of six
nations over concerns that Tehran might misuse its nuclear program
to make weapons.
2013 Apr 6, In Kazakhstan Iran
and six world powers failed to reach agreement on an approach to
reducing fears that Tehran might use its nuclear technology to make
weapons. The EU's foreign policy chief declared that the two sides
"remain far apart on substance."
2013 Jul 2, A Russian Proton
rocket carrying navigation satellites crashed a few seconds after
takeoff from the Kazakhstan’s Baikonur Cosmodrome. This was the 4th
Proton failure at Baikonur in 14 years.
(SFC, 7/3/13, p.A2)(Econ, 11/8/14, p.45)
2013 Jul 13, Kazakhstan said
the wife of fugitive former minister and oligarch Mukhtar Ablyazov
could not leave the country because she was under investigation.
Ablyazov said his wife and daughter were in danger.
2013 Jul 31, Dissident Kazakh
oligarch Mukhtar Ablyazov (50), accused at home of embezzling more
than $5 billion, was arrested near the French Riviera resort of
Cannes. The next day he was told by a French judge that he faced
extradition, but his family vowed to fight an expulsion it said was
2013 Aug 14, Kazakhstan’s
Supreme Court sentenced six men 5-10 years for conspiring to
assassinate government officials in Astana. They were arrested last
January. The court said one had trained his under-age Muslim wife as
a suicide bomber to detonate a charge.
2013 Sep 11, A Russian Soyuz
capsule carrying three astronauts touched down in Kazakhstan after
undocking from the International Space Station following 166 days in
2013 Sep, China unveiled its
“One Belt, One Road” (OBOR, aka BRI) initiative, a development
strategy that focuses on connectivity and cooperation between
Eurasian countries. Chinese leader Xi Jinping unveiled the BRI in
September and October 2013 during visits to Kazakhstan and
2013 Nov 11, A Russian space
capsule carrying the Sochi Olympic torch and three astronauts
returned to Earth from the International Space Station in a flawless
landing on the steppes of Kazakhstan.
2013 Dec 20, Kazakhstan’s
President Nursultan Nazarbayev, backed by the legislature, decided
to send officers to aid UN peacekeeping missions next year for the
first time since independence in 1991.
2013 Kazakhstan began producing
oil from the Kashagan oilfield in the northern Caspian Sea. The
project was eight years behind schedule and at $43 billion was $30
billion over budget. Production lasted only a few weeks due to leaks
of poisonous gas. A restart was hoped for in 2016.
(Econ, 10/11/14, p.73)
2014 Jan 9, A French court
ruled that dissident Kazakh Mukhtar Ablyazov, accused of embezzling
up to $6 billion from his former bank BTA, should be extradited from
France to Ukraine or Russia.
2014 Feb 11, The value of
Kazakhstan currency, the tenge, fell by 19%.
(Econ, 2/22/14, p.35)
2014 Feb 16, In Almaty,
Kazakhstan, protesters waived their knickers in a protest
ostensibly over a rule regulating synthetic underwear. The “pantie
protesters” were rounded up and led away. The real anger was over
the recent devaluation of the country’s currency.
(Econ, 2/22/14, p.35)
2014 Mar 11, Two Russian
cosmonauts and an American astronaut landed back on Earth in
Kazakhstan after a stay aboard the International Space Station (ISS)
of over half a year.
2014 Mar 26, A Soyuz spacecraft
carrying two Russians and NASA’s Steve Swanson blasted off from
Kazakhstan. A software glitch delayed their docking with the
International Space Station until March 27.
(SFC, 3/27/14, p.A2)(AP, 3/28/14)
2014 Apr 2, Kazakhstan PM Serik
Akhmetov unexpectedly announced his resignation and was swiftly
replaced by Karim Masimov (49), his influential predecessor. Masimov
had stepped down as prime minister in 2012 after occupying the
position for five years, during which he shepherded the country's
economy through the global financial crisis.
2014 Apr 9, A French court
blocked the extradition of exiled Kazakh oligarch Mukhtar Ablyazov,
an opposition figure wanted on embezzlement charges. Russia alleges
Ablyazov embezzled $5 billion (3.6 billion euros). Ukraine accuses
him of pilfering another $400 million.
2014 May 14, A Russian Soyuz
space capsule carrying three astronauts landed in Kazakhstan.
Russian Mikhail Tyurin, American Rick Mastracchio and Koichi Wakata
of Japan had spent 188 days in the ISS.
(SFC, 5/15/14, p.A5)
2014 May 29, Russian President
Vladimir Putin signed a deal creating an economic union with
ex-Soviet states Belarus and Kazakhstan.
2014 Jun 5, Rakhat Aliyev, the
Kazakh president's former son-in-law, was detained in Austria while
under investigation for alleged crimes including murder and running
a crime network in Kazakhstan.
2014 Sep 11, The Shanghai
Co-operation Organization (SCO) opened its 14th annual summit. The
2-day meeting in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, included the groups six
member countries: China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan
and Uzbekistan. The SCO agreed to adopt procedures for expansion
with India and Pakistan likely to join next year.
(Econ, 9/20/14, p.39)
2014 Sep 25, A US-Russian space
crew blasted off from Kazakhstan for a 6-month stint at the Int’l.
(SFC, 9/26/14, p.A2)
2014 Oct 30, Kazakhstan’s
border chief was charged with organized crime and soliciting bribes.
(Econ, 11/15/14, p.42)
2014 Nov 10, A Russian Soyuz
space capsule carrying three astronauts from the International Space
Station landed safely on the frozen Kazakhstan steppe.
2014 Nov 24, A Russian Soyuz
rocket blasted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan to
deliver three new crew members to the International Space Station,
including Italy's first female astronaut.
2014 Dec 3, In the Turkmen
frontier village of Ak-Yayla the presidents of Iran, Kazakhstan and
Turkmenistan attended the official opening of a railway line linking
landlocked Central Asia with the Persian Gulf.
2014 Dec 23, Russia and four
other ex-Soviet nations completed the creation of a new economic
alliance intended to bolster their integration. The Eurasian
Economic Union, which includes Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia
and Kyrgyzstan, comes to existence on Jan 1. Belarus President
Alexander Lukashenko cracked the ceremonial veneer of the meeting by
launching a harsh attack on Moscow for damaging Belarus' economic
interests with moves to restrict its exports to Russia.
2014 Dec 30, The US Pentagon
said three Yemenis and two Tunisians held for more than a decade at
Guantanamo have been flown to Kazakhstan for resettlement.
2015 Jan 2, The Eurasian
Economic Union, a trade bloc of former Soviet states, expanded to
four nations when Armenia formally joined, a day after the union
between Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan began.
2015 Jan 15, Kazakh President
Nursultan Nazarbayev and Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko
agreed that the delayed talks on the Ukraine conflict with leaders
of Russia, France and Germany will take place at the end of the
month in Astana.
2015 Jan 20, In southern
Kazakhstan a light passenger plane belonging to Kazakh copper miner
Kazakhmys crashed, killing 6 of 7 people on board.
2015 Feb 20, Kazakhstan soccer
federation Pres. Erlan Kozhagapanov said he wants to crack down on
match-fixing and corruption in football as the country prepares to
bid for the 2026 World Cup.
2015 Feb 24, In Austria Rakhat
Aliyev (b.1962), the Kazakh president's former son-in-law, was found
dead in his prison cell while awaiting trial on charges of murder.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rakhat_Aliyev)(Econ., 4/4/15, p.38)
2015 Mar 4, France's highest
appeals court paved the way for the extradition to either Russia or
Ukraine of jailed Kazakh tycoon Mukhtar Ablyazov, accused of
embezzling up to $6 billion from his former bank BTA.
2015 Mar 5, Energy-rich
Kazakhstan suspended Russian fuel and gas imports to protect its
domestic market from a surplus due to a weakened ruble which has
sent ripples of economic uncertainty through Central Asia.
2015 Mar 12, In Kazakhstan two
Russians and an American landed after nearly six months aboard the
Int’l. Space Station.
(SFC, 3/13/15, p.A2)
2015 Mar 20, Russian President
Vladimir Putin called for a single currency with the Kremlin's
closest ex-Soviet allies at a meeting with his Kazakh and Belarusian
counterparts in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana.
2015 Mar 28, NASA said a
Russian Soyuz spacecraft with three crew on board successfully
docked with the International Space Station after blasting off from
Kazakhstan. An American and two Russians floated into the
International Space Station, beginning what is to be a year away
from Earth for two of them.
(AFP, 3/28/15)(AP, 3/28/15)
2015 Apr 26, Kazakhstan's
citizens turned out in force for a presidential poll. Strongman
incumbent Nursultan Nazarbayev (74) won with 97.7% of the vote.
Central Election Commission data showed turnout was 95.22%.
(AFP, 4/26/15)(Reuters, 4/27/15)
2015 Apr 28, Russia’s unmanned
Progress vessel, loaded with 3 tons of goods for the Int’l. space
Station, began tumbling shortly after its launch from Kazakhstan.
2015 Apr 28, Russia’s unmanned
Progress M-27M, loaded with 3 tons of goods for the Int’l. space
Station, began tumbling shortly after its launch from Kazakhstan.
(AP, 4/29/15)(SFC, 4/29/15, p.A2)
2015 May 27, In Kazakhstan
international experts investigated the sudden deaths of some 134,000
endangered saiga antelope, raising fears that a species that has
been around since the Ice Age may be at risk of dying out. Around 40
percent of the nation's population of the endangered saiga antelope
have died in the past two weeks. The deaths were later believed to
have been caused by two naturally occurring bacteria.
(Reuters, 5/27/15)(SSFC, 6/21/15, p.C14)
2015 Jun 11, In Kazakhstan NASA
astronaut Terry Virts, Samantha Cristoforetti of the European Space
Agency and Russia's Anton Shkaplerov returned to Earth after 199
days on the Int’l. Space station, nearly a month longer than
2015 Jul 3, Russia launched an
unamnned cargo ship from Kazakhstan to the Int’l. Space Station. The
Progress M-28 ship was set to dock on July 5.
(SFC, 7/4/15, p.A4)
2015 Jul 10, An Austrian jury
acquitted Alnur Mussayev, Kazakhstan's former spy chief, and
presidential family guard Vadim Koshlyak of double murder in a trial
whose main suspect, the president's former son-in-law, was found
hanged in jail.
2015 Aug 20, Kazakhstan
currency plunged by over 20 percent against the dollar after the
government decided to move to a free float to cope with big swings
in global currencies and commodity prices. The policy change came a
day after President Nursultan Nazarbayev ordered a reduction in the
deficit to prepare for a possible further crash in the price of oil,
which he said could drop as low as $30 a barrel.
2015 Aug 27, The International
Atomic Energy Agency said it has signed an agreement with Kazakhstan
to establish a low-enriched uranium bank in the Central Asian
country, a move that supporters say could reduce concerns about
nuclear weapons proliferation.
2015 Sep 2, In Kazakhstan the
first Dane in space accompanied by 26 custom-made figurines from
Danish toymaker Lego blasted off in a Soyuz spacecraft as part of a
three-man team on an unusually long two-day mission to the
International Space Station.
2015 Sep 11, Kazakhstan's
President Nursultan Nazarbayev (75) signed off on daughter Dariga's
appointment as deputy-prime minister, in a move that could be linked
to the ex-Soviet republic's looming succession issue.
2015 Sep 12, A Russian space
capsule landed safely in Kazakhstan, bringing home a three-person
crew from the International Space Station, including a
record-breaking Russian cosmonaut. Gennady Padalka completed his
fifth mission for a world record of 879 total days in space.
2015 Sep 17, In France PM
Manuel Valls signed a decree authorizing the extradition to Russia
of jailed Kazakh tycoon Mukhtar Ablyazov. Ablyazov was notified in
October at the prison where he is being held outside Paris. The
businessman accused of embezzling up to $6 billion from his former
bank BTA planned to lodge an appeal.
2015 Oct 1, Russia launched its
Progress M-29M cargo spacecraft from Baikonur, Kazakhstan, to the
Int’l. Space Station.
(SFC, 10/2/15, p.A2)
2015 Oct 10, In South Korea
Iranian director Hadi Mohaghegh's "Immortal" and "Walnut Tree" from
Kazakhstan's Yerlan Nurmukhambetov were named the winners of the New
Currents award for first- and second-time filmmakers at the 20th
Busan International Film Festival.
2015 Dec 11, In Kazakhstan
former PM Serik Akhmetov (2012-2014) was sentenced to 10 years in
prison, the first time a former official of such stature will serve
jail time in the country. Akhmetov (57) was found guilty on four
corruption-related charges including embezzlement and abuse of
power, in a huge case involving more than 20 defendants.
2015 Dec 11, A three-person
crew from the International Space Station landed safely in the snowy
steppes of Kazakhstan.
2015 Dec 15, In Kazakhstan Tim
Peake (43), the first British astronaut to travel to the
International Space Station, blasted off from the Baikonur
cosmodrome with Russian space veteran Yury Malenchenko and Tim Kopra
of NASA for a six-month mission.
2015 Dec 21, The unmanned
Progress cargo spacecraft blasted off from Russia's space launch
complex in Baikonur, Kazakhstan, on a journey to the International
2015 Between Uzbekistan and
Kazakhstan the surface area of the Aral Sea was projected to be down
to13,000 sq. km.
(WSJ, 2/5/98, p.A18)
2016 Jan 27, A helicopter
crashed in Kazakhstan, killing all 5 aboard, including an infant
being taken to a hospital.
2016 Feb 22, Kazakhstan's
anti-corruption agency said it is investigating the head of the
journalists' union Seitkazy Matayev over suspected theft and tax
evasion, less than a month before a parliamentary election.
2016 Mar 2, US astronaut Scott
Kelly and Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko landed in Kazakhstan
after almost a year in space in a ground-breaking experiment
foreshadowing a potential manned mission to Mars.
2016 Mar 14, In Kazakhstan a
joint European-Russian mission aiming to search for traces of life
on Mars blasted off for the start of a seven-month unmanned space
journey to the Red Planet.
2016 Mar 19, A Soyuz space
capsule carrying two Russians and an American docked with the
International Space Station. Their rocket took off in windy
conditions from Russia's space base in Kazakhstan at 2126 GMT March
2016 Mar 20, Kazakhstan
citizens voted in a parliamentary election expected to provide a
commanding majority for ageing autocrat President Nursultan
Nazarbayev's ruling party. Preliminary results showed Pres.
Nursultan Nazarbayev's Nur Otan party winning 82 percent of the
vote. International observers, who were allowed unfettered access,
observed ballot-box stuffing and other irregularities.
(AFP, 3/20/16)(AP, 3/21/16)
2016 Apr 27, In Kazakhstan
hundreds of people staged street protests in the western city of
Aktobe over land reform, a rare act of defiance that could pose a
challenge to the leadership of President Nursultan Nazarbayev.
Critics had staged their first protest in the city of Atyrau on
2016 May 5, Kazakh President
Nursultan Nazarbayev said he would delay a planned land reform which
triggered a wave of public protests across the Central Asian nation.
The protests were sparked by fears that reforms will allow
foreigners - especially Chinese companies - to take over farmland.
2016 May 6, In Kazakhstan
Kuandyk Bishimbayev, chief executive of a state financial holding
company, was named economy minister following the resignation of his
predecessor over public protests against a planned land reform.
2016 May 20, In Kazakhstan
attempts to hold demonstrations against a land-reform measure were
blocked. About forty activists were arrested for trying to organize
2016 Jun 5, In Kazakhstan an
attack by gunmen on the north-western city of Aktobe left at least
25 people dead. This included 13 attackers, 4 civilians and 3
National Guard servicemen. Eight gunmen have been detained.
(Reuters, 6/7/16)(AP, 6/10/16)(Econ, 7/2/16,
2016 Jun 10, In Kazakhstan 5
suspected militants were killed in gunbattles with police in Aktobe
that followed a series of recent armed attacks that have challenged
the stability of the energy-rich ex-Soviet nation.
2016 Jun 12, Kazakh security
forces detained three men suspected of being Islamist militants
linked to deadly June 5 attacks in the city of Akrobe. At least 25
people including 18 attackers died during the assaults on a national
guard base and firearms shops, and in the subsequent manhunt.
2016 Jun 18, In Kazakhstan Tim
Peake, the first British astronaut on the ISS, Russia's Yury
Malenchenko and NASA's Tim Kopra parachuted down onto the Kazakh
steppe in their Soyuz capsule at 0915 GMT after spending 186 days in
2016 Jul 5, Chevron, Exxon
Mobil and its other partners said they will spend $36.8 billion to
develop more oil in Kazakhstan in a venture called Tengizchevroil.
2016 Jul 7, In Kazakhstan a
Russian space capsule was launched beginning a two-day trip to the
International Space Station. The Soyuz capsule carried Russian
Anatoly Ivanshin, NASA's Kate Rubins and Takuya Onishi of Japan’s
space agency JAXA.
2016 Jul 18, In Kazakhstan 3
police officers and one civilian were killed in armed attacks on a
police station and a security building in Almaty. Police said they
have disarmed and arrested two attackers.
2016 Aug 4, A court in
Kazakhstan ordered the release on parole of opposition activist
Vladimir Kozlov, after spending nearly five years in jail accused of
participating in a failed attempt to overthrow the government.
2016 Aug 31, Kazakhstan said it
had arrested 21 members of radical groups plotting terror attacks in
2016 Oct 19, In Kazakhstan two
Russian cosmonauts and a NASA astronaut soared into orbit in a Soyuz
spacecraft at the start of a two-day journey to the International
2016 Oct 30, A Russian Soyuz
space capsule landed in Kazakhstan, bringing astronauts Kate Rubins
of NASA, Japan's Takuya Onishi and Anatoly Ivanishin of Russia back
to Earth from a 115-day mission aboard the International Space
2016 Nov 7, Kazakh businessman
Tokhtar Tuleshov, best known for running the Shymkentpivo brewery,
was sentenced to 21 years in prison on charges including plotting a
coup against veteran President Nursultan Nazarbayev.
2016 Nov 23, Kazakhstan's
parliament called for the capital city, Astana, to be renamed after
President Nursultan Nazarbayev, a week ahead of a national holiday
dedicated to the 76-year-old leader who has the power to accept or
reject the proposal.
2016 Nov 28, Kazakh courts
sentenced nine Islamic State supporters and two leading political
activists to prison terms in separate trials after their convictions
over the two biggest shocks to veteran President Nursultan
2016 Dec 1, In Kazakhstan an
unmanned Russian cargo ship blasted with a load of supplies to the
International Space Station, but Russian space officials said they
weren't getting data from it. The Progress MSD-04 cargo craft broke
up over Siberia.
(AP, 12/1/16)(SFC, 12/2/16, p.A2)
2016 Dec 7, Kazakhstan's state
security service said it has detained several people suspected of
stealing oil and fuel from a refinery in Aktobe and being linked to
2016 Dec 9, In France Kazakh
opposition figure Mukhtar Ablyazov was released from prison after
France's highest administrative authority blocked his extradition to
Russia, where he is accused of embezzling billions of dollars.
2016 Dec 13, Kazakhstan and
Israel signed agreements on cooperation in scientific research,
civil aviation, medicine and agriculture following talks between
Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev visiting PM Benjamin
Netanyahu. They also agreed to work more closely together in
2017 Jan 10, Kazakhstan’s
National Anticorruption Bureau said former economy minister Kuandyk
Bishimbayev (36) has been arrested on suspicion of bribery. He was
dismissed from his ministerial post by President Nursultan
Nazarbayev in late 2016 after just a few months in office.
2017 Jan 11, Kazakhstan's
veteran leader Nursultan Nazarbayev (76) gave the green light for
constitutional reforms that could dilute the sweeping powers he has
amassed as president and force his eventual successor to share power
with other institutions.
2017 Jan 23, In Kazakhstan
indirect 2-day talks began in Astana between the Syrian government
and rebels. The talks were hosted by Russia, Turkey and Iran.
(Reuters, 1/23/17)(Econ, 1/28/17, p.39)
2017 Jan 24, In Kazakhstan
Russia, Turkey and Iran backed a shaky truce between Syria's warring
parties and agreed to monitor its compliance. On the ground rebels
faced continued fighting on two fronts, which could undermine the
2017 Jan 25, Kazakh President
Nursultan Nazarbayev said he will delegate some of his sweeping
powers to the Central Asian nation's parliament and cabinet, a move
that could facilitate an eventual political transition.
2017 Feb 16, In Kazakhstan
Syrian government officials sat face-to-face with rebels for the
second time in three weeks, as diplomats stepped up efforts to lay
the groundwork for UN-brokered peace talks next week.
2017 Feb 17, In Kazakhstan
seven army soldiers died in an avalanche in the ex-Soviet republic's
southern mountains. Rescuers saved 16 other soldiers who had been
trapped by the avalanche.
2017 Feb 22, Russia
successfully launched a cargo ship to the International Space
Station (ISS) from Kazakhstan.
2017 Feb 25, Iran announced
plans to buy 950 tons of uranium ore from Kazakhstan over three
years and said it expects to get Russian help in producing nuclear
2017 Apr 10, In Kazakhstan NASA
astronaut Shane Kimbrough and Russia's Sergei Ryzhikov and Andrei
Borisenko touched down after spending 173 days in space.
2017 May 3, The Syrian armed
opposition said it has suspended its participation in the 4th round
of peace talks being held in Astana, Kazakhstan, and demanded an end
to government bombing of areas under its control. Kazakhstan said it
expects the Syrian armed opposition to return to the table on May 4.
(Reuters, 5/3/17)(AP, 5/3/17)
2017 May 4, Iran, Russia and
Turkey signed an agreement calling for the setting up of four
"de-escalation zones" in war-torn Syria at the cease-fire talks in
Kazakhstan and said that President Bashar Assad's air force would
halt flights over the designated areas in the country's north,
center and south. Members of the Syrian opposition delegation
shouted in protest and walked out of the conference room in Astana.
The opposition said it could not accept creating safe zones in Syria
because it threatens the country's territorial integrity and said it
would also not recognize Iran as a guarantor of the peace plan.
(AP, 5/4/17)(Reuters, 5/4/17)
2017 May 30, Kazakhstan's
energy ministry said that the Tengizchevroil project has suspended
operations at Tengiz oilfield after a toxic substance was released.
2017 Jun 2, A Russian Soyuz
capsule, carrying astronauts Russia's Oleg Novitsky and Thomas
Pesquet of France, landed in Kazakhstan after a half-year aboard the
International Space Station. NASA's Peggy Whitson's mission aboard
the space station has been extended by three months.
2017 Jun 10, Kazakhstan’s Expo
17 opened in Astana with the theme “Future Energy.” The Expo closed
on Sept. 10.
2017 Jun 14, A Kazakh man died
and another was hospitalized after they were caught in a fire on the
steppes triggered by falling debris from a Russian space launch. The
fire broke out in the "planned fallout zone" for the Soyuz 2.1a
rocket, which had blasted off from Baikonur at 0920 GMT (3:20 pm
2017 Jul 5, In Syria Russian
strategic bombers struck the Islamic State group with cruise
missiles along the boundary between Hama and Homs provinces. A
two-day round of Syria cease-fire talks in Astana, Kazakhstan, ended
without conclusive results.
2017 Aug 29, Kazakhstan
inaugurated a new internationally-controlled uranium fuel bank seen
as potentially important in curbing nuclear proliferation and
reducing regional security tensions.
2017 Sep 10, Kazakhstan’s World
(Econ, 9/16/17, p.60)
2017 Oct 14, An unmanned
Russian cargo ship was launched from Baikonur, Kazakhstan, to take
supplies to the six astronauts aboard the International Space
2017 Oct 26, Kazakhstan
President Nursultan Nazarbayev ordered his office to prepare for a
switch to a Latin-based alphabet from a Cyrillic one, distancing
itself, at least graphically, from Russia. Kazakh, a Turkic
language, used to be written in Arabic script until the 1920s when
the Soviet Union briefly introduced a Latin alphabet for it. This
was later replaced by a Cyrillic one in 1940, based on the Russian
2017 Nov 7, The United States
unveiled criminal charges against five people accused of involvement
in a bribery scheme to help British defense giant Rolls-Royce win
energy-related contracts in Kazakhstan.
2017 Dec 14, Three astronauts
returned to Earth from the Int’l. Space Station (ISS) after nearly
six month in orbit. A Russian Soyuz capsule landed in Kazakhstan
with NASA’s Randy Bresnik, Russia’s Sergey Ryazansky and Paolo
Nespoli of the European Space Agency.
(SFC, 12/15/17, p.A4)
2017 Dec 17, In Kazakhstan a
Soyuz capsule carrying three astronauts from Russia, Japan and the
US blasted off for a two-day trip to the Int’l. Space Station. Anton
Shkaplerov, Norishige Kanai and Scott Tingle will join Russia's
Alexander Misurkin and Joe Acaba and Mark Vandde Hei of NASA, who
have been aboard since September.
2017 Dec 25, The leaders of
Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan pledged to improve relations, after ties
between the two former Soviet republics degenerated into a trade war
under the previous Kyrgyz leadership.
2017 Dec 26, Angola’s
Russian-built AngoSat 1 satellite successfully entered orbit after
launch from the Baikonur pad in Kazakhstan, but experts couldn't
immediately establish contact. By Dec. 29 state-run Energia company
engineers established communications with the craft and received
data indicating that all its systems are operating properly.
2017 China Ocean Shipping
Company became a 49% owner of the “dry port” of Khorgos, a
road-and-rail terminal on the Kazakh-Chinese border. This was seen
as central to China’s Belt and Road initiative. Within months a city
opened on the Chinese side of the border.
(Econ, 7/27/19, p.18)
2017 Kazakhstan’s population
numbered about 18 million.
(Econ 7/1/17, p.32)
2018 Jan 18, A bus fire in
northwestern Kazakhstan killed 52 Uzbek citizens on a route used by
migrant workers heading to Russia. Only five people managed to
escape the burning vehicle.
2018 Feb 17, It was reported
that authorities in ex-Soviet Kazakhstan have arrested a lawmaker
from neighbouring Kyrgyzstan over contraband. Damirbek Asylbek uulu,
an MP with the ruling coalition, was arrested along with three other
2018 Feb 27, In Kazakhstan a
ban on speaking Russian in cabinet meetings took effect - despite
many ministers favoring that language over their native Kazakh.
2018 Feb 28, In Kazakhstan
NASA's Joe Acaba and Mark Vande Hei, and Russia's Alexander Misurkin
returned from the International Space Station to the snowy, bitingly
cold flat lands of Central Asia, ending a 5 1/2-month mission. Three
astronauts remained behind.
2018 Mar 1, Kazakhstan said it
will allow cabinet and parliament members to speak Russian,
softening the tone of an earlier statement by President Nursultan
Nazarbayev who had ordered a switch to Kazakh.
2018 Mar 21, In Kazakhstan two
Americans and a Russian cosmonaut blasted off from the Baikonur
launch pad on their way to the Int'l. Space Station.
(SFC, 3/22/18, p.A2)
2018 May 15, In Kazakhstan
talks on Syria spearheaded by Russia in Astana failed to edge the
seven-year conflict closer to a political settlement, and cast the
future of diplomatic efforts to end the crisis into uncertainty.
2018 May 23, Kazakhstan's
parliament passed a bill that would cement its veteran ruler
Nursultan Nazarbayev's status as the country's top power broker even
if he decides to retire as president.
2018 Jun 3, In Kazakhstan
Russian cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov, Scott Tingle of the United
States and Norishige Kanai of Japan touched down in a Russian Soyuz
space capsule on the Kazakh steppe after a 168-day mission aboard
the International Space Station.
2018 Jun 6, In Kazakhstan a
trio of astronauts from Russia, the United States and the European
Space Agency blasted off for a mission on the International Space
Station. A Russian spacecraft carried Serena Aunon-Chancellor of
NASA, Sergey Prokopyev of Russian space agency Roscosmos and the
ESA's Alexander Gerst, from Germany, as it lifted off as scheduled
from the Russia-leased Baikonur cosmodrome.
2018 Jun 23, Police in
Kazakhstan detained dozens of people at an anti-government rally
organized by Mukhtar Ablyazov, a former tycoon and exiled opponent
of Pres. Nursultan Nazarbayev (77).
2018 Jul 19, In Kazakhstan
Denis Ten (25), a 2014 Olympic bronze medalist figure skater, was
stabbed to death. Ten was knifed during a struggle with two men he
had caught trying to steal the mirrors on his car in Almaty.
2018 Jul 20, In Kazakhstan
Nuraly Kiyasov "confessed his guilt in the presence of an attorney"
while being questioned over the death a day earlier of figure skater
Denis Ten. Police sought a second man, named as Arman Kudaibergenov,
in the case.
2018 Aug 1, A Kazakh court
freed a Chinese citizen who gave testimony on a secretive network of
Chinese "re-education camps" during her explosive immigration trial.
Sayragul Sauytbay (41), an ethnic Kazakh Chinese national, had told
the court how she had been forced to work in a camp system in
China's Xinjiang region where hundreds of thousands of people are
2018 Aug 12, Azerbaijan, Iran,
Kazakhstan, Russia and Turkmenistan agreed in principle how to
divide up the potentially huge oil and gas resources of the Caspian
2018 Oct 4, In Kazakhstan the
Russian Soyuz MS-08 space capsule carrying Russia's Oleg Artemyev
and NASA's Drew Feustel and Ricky Arnold landed safely after a
six-month mission aboard the International Space Station.
2018 Oct 11, The two-man
US-Russian crew of a Soyuz spacecraft en route to the International
Space Station was forced to make a dramatic emergency landing in
Kazakhstan when their rocket failed in mid-air. The rocket
malfunctioned two minutes after liftoff, forcing its two-man crew of
Nick Hague and Russian cosmonaut Alexei Ovchinin to make an
emergency landing. Investigators later said the rocket failure was
caused by a sensor that was damaged during assembly at the
Soviet-era cosmodrome at Baikonur.
(Reuters, 10/11/18)(Reuters, 10/8/19)
2018 Nov 2, US immigration
officials said Dias Kadyrbayev, a college friend of Boston Marathon
bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, has been deported to his native Kazakhstan
after he was convicted of concealing evidence in the 2013 Boston
2018 Nov 22, The Austria-based
Int'l. Biathlon Union said nine biathletes from Kazakhstan have been
suspended on suspicion of doping, including the country's entire
women's Olympic team.
2018 Dec 3, A Soyuz rocket
carrying Russian, American and Canadian astronauts took off from
Kazakhstan and reached orbit, the first manned mission since a
failed launch in October.
2018 Dec 20, Three astronauts
returned to Earth after more than six months aboard the
International Space Station. A Russian Soyuz capsule with NASA's
Serena Aunon-Chancellor, Russian Sergey Prokopyev and German
astronaut Alexander Gerst of the European Space Agency landed on the
snow-covered steppes in Kazakhstan.
2019 Jan 5, The Kurdish-led
Syrian Democratic Forces handed over IS fighters and civilians from
Kazakhstan to their country. This included five fighters, 11 women
and 30 children.
2019 Jan 9, The Kazakh Foreign
Ministry said China is allowing more than 2,000 ethnic Kazakhs to
abandon their Chinese citizenship and leave the country in a sign
that Beijing may be starting to feel a mounting backlash against its
sweeping crackdown on Muslims in the far west region of Xinjiang.
2019 Jan 17, Kazakhstan jailed
Arman Kudaybergenov and Nural Kiyasov to 18 years in prison for the
murder of Denis Ten, the country's first Olympic figure skating
medalist. Ten (25) was stabbed in Almaty last July as he struggled
with two men he had caught trying to steal the mirrors on his car.
Female defendant Zhanar Tolybayeva was found guilty of theft and
failing to report a crime, and sentenced to four years.
2019 Feb 7, In Uzbekistan
businessman Halemubieke Xiaheman (41), an ethnic Kazakh citizen of
China's Xinjiang province, said in a video apparently recorded
inside Tashkent airport building that he had been harassed by
Chinese security officials to a point where his Russian and Kazakh
clients were scared to work with him.
2019 Feb 21, Kazakhstan's Pres.
Nursultan Nazarbayev fired the government over what he called its
failure to raise living standards and diversify away from oil and
gas in the Central Asian nation. An interim administration will be
led by Askar Mamin, who previously held the post of first deputy
2019 Feb 27, Kazakh President
Nursultan Nazarbayev ordered his government to tap the country's
rainy-day fund for $3.6 billion in order to boost public sector
salaries and social aid payouts and develop housing and
2019 Mar 10, Kazakh police
arrested Serikjan Bilash, an activist who has campaigned for victims
of China's re-education drive in Xinjiang, sealing his informal
group's office and taking its computers.
2019 Mar 19, Kazakhstan's
President Nursultan Nazarbayev (78), the only leader that the
independent country has ever known, abruptly announced his
resignation after three decades in power, raising uncertainty over
the future course of the .
2019 Mar 20, In Kazakhstan
Kassym-Jomart Tokayev (65), speaker of the upper chamber of
parliament, was officially sworn in as interim president. Dariga
Nazarbayeva (55), the eldest daughter of the outgoing leader, was
appointed speaker of parliament, fueling speculation that she may
succeed her father as president after next year's election.
Nazarbayev remained chairman of the security council and leader of
the ruling party. Tokayev immediately proposed changing the name of
the capital from Astana to Nursultan (Sultan of Light). Parliament
approved the change within hours.
(AP, 3/20/19)(AFP, 3/20/19)
2019 Mar 23, In Kazakhstan the
order to change Astana's name to Nur-Sultan was issued by interim
President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, who took power after Nursultan
Nazarbayev resigned March 19.
2019 Mar 27, A Kazakh military
helicopter with 13 people on board crashed on during exercises.
There were casualties, but that it was not yet clear how many.
2019 Apr 3, Kazakhstan's
interim president Kassym-Jomart Tokayev made his first foreign visit
since being appointed two weeks ago, meeting with Russian President
Vladimir Putin in Moscow.
2019 Apr 4, The Russian
Progress freighter blasted off from a launch facility in Baikonur,
Kazakhstan, and docked with the International Space Station after
two orbits. It set a record time for a trip to the ISS, docking in
three hours and 21 minutes.
2019 Apr 9, Kazakhstan's
interim president ordered an early presidential election to be held
on June 9.
2019 May 1, Hundreds of Kazakhs
rallied in their two main cities, calling for a boycott of June
presidential elections that they dismissed as a cover for an
orchestrated handover of power. Police rushed to detain several
(Reuters, 5/1/19)(AP, 5/1/19)
2019 Jun 9, Police in
Kazakhstan arrested hundreds of opposition protesters at polls to
elect the country's first new president in 30 years following the
departure of historic leader Nursultan Nazarbayev. Hand-picked
successor Kassym-Jomart Tokayev took 70.8 percent of the
presidential vote. The elections saw hundreds of arrests after the
biggest protests in Kazakhstan in at least three years, as
demonstrators urged a boycott of what they said was a fixed
(AFP, 6/9/19)(AFP, 6/10/19)
2019 Jun 12, Kazakhstan's new
Pres. Kassym-Jomart Tokayev promised during his inauguration to
continue the course set by his predecessor, who led the Central
Asian country since it gained independence in 1991.
2019 Jun 24, In Kazakhstan a
fire engulfed a sprawling ammunition depot near the town of Arys
causing powerful explosions that injured at least 46 people and
forced the evacuation of tens of thousands.
2019 Jun 25, In Kazakhstan NASA
astronaut Anne McClain, veteran cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko of
Roscosmos, and Canadian Space Agency record-holder David
Saint-Jacques emerged from the space craft to applause from support
crews, after touching down near the Kazakh city of Dzhezkazgan.
2019 Jun 29, A brawl between
Kazakh workers and their Arab colleagues in one of the country's
largest oil fields left 30 people injured. The brawl was reportedly
triggered after a Lebanese contractor posted a photo on WhatsApp
featuring a Kazakh female colleague that many in the former Soviet
nation saw as insulting. The injured engineers and workers included
Lebanese, Jordanians and Palestinians.
2019 Aug 16, Kazakh rights
activist Serkzhan Bilash, who campaigned against the detention of
ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims in special camps in China, pleaded
guilty to a hate speech charge in exchange for securing his freedom.
2019 Sep 21, Kazakhstan police
detained dozens in in Nur-Sultan and Almaty, the country's two
largest cities, as they took part in the latest protest against
China's influence in the Central Asian republic. The protests were
organized by supporters of Mukhtar Ablyazov, a fugitive banker
living in France who has been the fiercest critic of Kazakhstan’s
first president, Nursultan Nazarbayev.
2019 Sep 25, In Kazakhstan a
Russian Soyuz rocket blasted off carrying an American, a Russian and
the first space traveler from the United Arab Emirates to the Int'l.
(SFC, 9/26/19, p.A2)
2019 Oct 3, In Kazakhstan
American Nick Hague, Russian Alexey Ovchinin and Hazzaa al-Mansoori,
the first person from the United Arab Emirates to fly into space,
landed safely after a six-hour flight from the International Space
Station following an 8-day mission.
2019 Dec 27, In Kazakhstan a
jetliner with 98 people aboard struggled to get airborne and crashed
shortly after departing from Almaty, killing at least 12 people.
2020 Feb 6, NASA astronaut
Christina Koch, who has spent nearly 11 months in orbit on the
longest spaceflight by a woman, landed safely in Kazakhstan along
with along with station Commander Luca Parmitano of the European
Space Agency and the Russian space agency Roscosmos' Alexander
2020 Feb 7, In southern
Kazakhstan ethnic clashes between ethnic Kazakhs and Dungans, a
minority group with Chinese roots, left eight people dead. The total
number of casualties soon rose to 10. Dozens of people were detained
as police established their roles in the incident.
2020 Feb 21, In Kazakhstan
Democratic Party activist and filmmaker Zhanbolat Mamay was one of
dozens of activists who were detained ahead of demonstrations set
for the next day. Mamay was arrested and sentenced to three days'
detention for calling for the unsanctioned rally.
2020 Feb 22, Kazakh police
detained dozens of opposition supporters who staged public protests
against the government. Around 200 people were detained as two
opposition groups called for anti-government demonstrations in the
2020 Feb 25, In Kazakhstan
activist Dulat Agadil died in a jail cell, a day after police took
him in on charges of contempt of court and insulting a judge.
Authorities, including Pres. Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, said his death
was caused by acute cardiovascular failure.
2020 Mar 1, Kazakhstan police
detained dozens of opposition supporters who took to the streets
after the death of an anti-government activist in a detention
2020 Mar 5, In Vienna OPEC
members agreed to cut oil output by an extra 1.5 million barrels per
day (bpd) in the second quarter of 2020 to support prices that have
been hit by the coronavirus outbreak, but made its action
conditional on Russia and others joining in. Russia and Kazakhstan,
both members of the broader and informal group known as OPEC+, said
they had not yet agreed to a deeper cut.
2020 Mar 13, Kazakhstan
confirmed first coronavirus cases.
2020 Mar 29, Kazakhstan locked
down its fifth major city as part of measures to prevent the spread
of coronavirus. The country has confirmed 265 coronavirus cases and
has already locked down its capital, Nur-Sultan, the biggest city,
Almaty, as well as Shymkent, a large city in the south, and Aktau, a
Caspian Sea port.
2020 Mar 30, Kazakhstan, a
Central Asian nation of 19 million, has confirmed 302 cases of the
disease and has closed its borders, locked down most of its major
cities and shut down most businesses in the two biggest population
centers for a week.
2020 Apr 9, Three astronauts
flew to the International Space Station. NASA’s Chris Cassidy and
Russians Anatoly Ivanishin and Ivan Vagner arrived at the orbiting
lab in their Soyuz capsule six hours after blasting off from
2020 Apr 11, Kazakh authorities
said ten people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus at
one of the worker camps located next to the giant Tengiz oilfield.
The camp has been locked down and workers can enter the Tengiz field
itself only after being quarantined for 14 days.
2020 Apr 17, In Kazakhstan a
US-Russian crew landed safely following a stint on the International
Space Station and was greeted with extra precautions due to the
2020 Apr 18, Kazakhstan police
said they have detained political activist and government critic
Arman Shorayev in connection with the alleged spreading of "false
information" during a state of emergency.
2020 May 1, Kazakh airlines
made their first regular domestic flights in more than a month, with
rows of passengers seated alongside empty middle seats, after the
vast Central Asian nation eased coronavirus lockdown rules.
2020 May 1, Authorities in
Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan began evacuating tens of thousands of
people from the Syr Darya river basin after the 3-year-old Sardoba
dam on the Uzbek side burst, flooding large areas on both sides of
the border. Six people were killed and over 100,000 displaced.
Damages were estimated at $1 billion. Nine people were later
arrested on charges that included embezzlement, fraud and
negligence. Journalists looking into the collapse were harassed and
(Reuters, 5/2/20)(Econ., 8/8/20, p.31)
2020 Jun 23, Kazakhstan has
reported almost 29,000 COVID-19 cases, up from about 5,000 at the
end of the lockdown. Almaty's the city's healthcare chief said the
city may convert two sports arenas into COVID-19 hospitals as
existing facilities for patients with suspected and confirmed cases
are nearly full.
2020 Jun 25, Kazakhstan's
health minister resigned, saying COVID-19 complications prevented
him from leading efforts against the coronavirus outbreak. The
number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Kazakhstan has nearly
tripled this month to 32,000, with 136 deaths.
2020 Jul 9, In Kazakhstan the
Chinese embassy flagged a "significant increase" in cases in the
Kazakh cities of Atyrau, Aktobe and Shymkent since mid-June.
2020 Jul 10, Mike Ryan, head of
the World Health Organization's emergencies program, said that an
outbreak of pneumonia in Kazakhstan, reported to be highly lethal,
was "certainly on our radar". He also said it was possible it might
be COVID-19. Kazakhstan's healthcare ministry branded Chinese media
reports as "fake news".
2020 Oct 14, In Kazakhstan a
trio of space travelers blasted off to the International Space
Station, using for the first time a fast-track maneuver that allowed
them to reach the orbiting outpost in just a little over three
hours. NASA’s Kate Rubins along with Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey
Kud-Sverchkov of the Russian space agency Roscosmos lifted off as
scheduled from the Russia-leased Baikonur space launch facility for
a six-month stint on the station.
2020 Oct 22, A trio of space
travelers safely returned to Earth after a six-month mission on the
International Space Station. The Soyuz MS-16 capsule carrying NASA
astronaut Chris Cassidy, and Roscosmos’ Anatoly Ivanishin and Ivan
Vagner landed on the steppes of Kazakhstan southeast of the town of
2020 Dec 4, President
Kassym-Jomart Tokayev's office said Kazakhstan will start producing
the Russian Sputnik V vaccine against the novel coronavirus this
month and begin a mass vaccination campaign next year.
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Subject = Kazakhstan
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