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Kazakhstan: President Begins Trip to India, Australia


Almaty, 9 December 1996 (RFE/RL) -- Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev is scheduled today to begin a three-day visit to India.

In New Delhi, Nazarbayev is expected to sign agreements on reciprocal import taxes and mutal investment guarantees. Bilateral trade between the two nations stood at $30 million last year.

Nazarbayev is then set to head for Australia to sign memorandums on bilateral friendship and cooperation. He is expected to return to Almaty on Saturday.

Some 3,000 anti-government demonstrators rallied in the Kazakh capital yesterday to protest difficult economic conditions in the country. Pyotr Svoik, the co-chairman of the Azamat opposition movement, which organized the rally, says he is trying to gather enough signatures for a referendum on holding a new presidential election. Nazarbayev had his mandate extended until the year 2000 in a recent plebiscite.
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