October 5, 2006 -- Prominent opposition figure and political analyst Nurbulat Masanov, 52, has died of heart failure.
A historian by training, Masanov was the president of the Kazakh Political Sciences Association.
In the early 2000s, he was a leading member of the Forum of Democratic Forces that opposed President Nursultan Nazarbaev's government.
Masanov originally focused on Kazakh nomadism before increasingly turning his attention to his country's post-Soviet political scene.
He was temporarily banned in the 1990s over criticism he leveled at President Nazarbaev's administration.