Accessibility links

Kazakh Man Circumcises Himself To Honor President's 70th Birthday


Ibragimov is a well-known performance artist in Kazakhstan

Ibragimov is a well-known performance artist in Kazakhstan

He could have just sent him a card. Or composed a song or something. A Kazakh performance artist, Kanat Ibragimov, has had himself circumcised in honor of his President Nursultan Nazarbaev's 70th birthday.

Before the ordeal, a rising star of Kazakh showbiz -- described by "Respublika" as "a hybrid of Marilyn Monroe and Kazakh nightingale" -- sang "Happy birthday, Mr. President," before Ibragimov emerged with pickle jar and a mushroom-like object floating inside.

He dedicated his sacrifice to the president and called on Kazakh citizens to do the same.

As Eurasianet's "Inside The Cocoon" blog notes:

As pressure mounts on civil society in Kazakhstan, humor is becoming an alternative means for protest. Performance artist Kanat Ibragimov, for example, is becoming well-known for his tongue-in-cheek actions. He gate-crashed this April’s Eurasian Media Forum - brainchild of the president’s daughter, Dariga Nazarbayeva - to distribute leaflets while fellow artist Aynur Saydenova played La Marseillaise on a violin. Ibragimov’s leaflets bore a concise message: “kop soz, bok soz,” which loosely translates from Kazakh as “lots of words, lots of excrement.”

Watch the K+ report, in English and with all the gory details.

-- Luke Allnutt

About This Blog

Written by RFE/RL editors and correspondents, Transmission serves up news, comment, and the odd silly dictator story. While our primary concern is with foreign policy, Transmission is also a place for the ideas -- some serious, some irreverent -- that bubble up from our bureaus. The name recognizes RFE/RL's role as a surrogate broadcaster to places without free media. You can write us at transmission+rferl.org

XS
SM
MD
LG