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Kazakh Report: February 19, 2002


19 February 2002

DAY OF MOTHER TONGUES TO BE MARKED ON FEBRUARY 22
Kazakhstan's State Committee on Working with UNESCO announced on 19 February that Kazakhstan will mark International Day of Mother Tongues on February 22. The Committee reported that according to UNESCO, the Day of Mother Tongues will be marked internationally this year. It was also added that for such a multi-ethnic state as Kazakhstan is, the issue of mother tongues and their preservation is very important.

TRAIN CAR LOADED WITH RADIOACTIVE METAL SENZT BACK TO EASTERN KAZAKHSTANI FROM CHINESE BORDER
A freight car loaded with radioactive materials was not allowed to cross the Kazakh-Chinese border this week. The cargo of metal belongs to the Kazakh company "Rustam" which wanted to sell the metal to its Chinese partners, but customs control on Kazakh-Chinese border found a high radioactive background when checking the interior of the freight car. It is not the first time that metal intended for export to China has been sent back to Kazakhstan after background radio-activity was detected. The freight car is currently in the village of Ognevka in Eastern Kazakhstan Oblast.

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON KAZAKH TERMINOLOGY HELD IN ALMATY
On February 19 an International Conference on Terminology in the Kazakh Language was held at Dostyq (Friendship) House in Almaty. It was the first international scientific gathering to discuss that issue. Scientists and experts from universities and institutes from all over Kazakhstan participated in the conference. Kazakhstan currently faces problems with the use of the Kazakh language at all the levels of everyday life, even though Kazakh is officially the state language.

COMPUTER PROGRAM SUPPORTING THE KAZAKH LANGUAGE FOR PC USERS INTRODUCED
On February 19 the Center for New Technologies at Kazakhstan's Ministry of Education and Science held the presentation of a new PC program converting the computer language system into Kazakh. The program was developed by a Qaraghandy-based private company named "Sanasaf." The company has also created a PC program called Kazakh-Russian, Russian-Kazakh translator, which was also featured at the promotion.

KAZAKHSTANI MUSICIANS AND ACTORS TO TAKE PART IN INTERNATIONAL ARTS COMPETITION IN HOLLYWOOD
The International Culture Center at the Assembly of Peoples of Kazakhstan announced on 19 February that a group of Kazakhstani musicians and actors representing the culture and arts of different ethnic groups in Kazakhstan will take part in the international arts competition scheduled to be held in Hollywood in October 2002. Well known Kazakh actor Asanali Ashimov told journalists that the group from Kazakhstan will be carefully selected in order to "gain the highest results possible."

MEMBER OF KAZAKH PARLIAMENT CRITICIZES LAW ON JOINT STOCK VENTURES
Serikbay Alibayev, who is a deputy of the Mazhilis (the lower chamber of Kazakhstan's parliament), criticized the law on Joint Stock Ventures at a Mazhilis sesion on February 19. Alibayev complained that the present law does not include any regulations on the status of Kazakh Joint Stock Companies that become bankrupt.

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