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Rakhat Aliev's Father Returns To Kazakhstan

Mukhtar Aliev after arriving at Almaty airport on October 4

Mukhtar Aliev after arriving at Almaty airport on October 4

ALMATY -- Mukhtar Aliev, the father of former Kazakh presidential son-in-law Rakhat Aliev, has returned to Almaty from London in the hope of his wife being allowed to leave Kazakhstan for medical care, RFE/RL's Kazakh Service reports.

Mukhtar Aliev left Kazakhstan in March 2008 when his son Rakhat Aliev was wanted in Kazakhstan on several charges including treason. There were conflicting reports about Aliev having been interrogated at the Kazakh Embassy in Vienna about his son. He later left Vienna for London and spent several months there.

Mukhtar Aliev told RFE/RL before boarding his plane in London that his major goal is to help his wife, Minavar Alieva, get permission to leave Kazakhstan and receive treatment in Europe for a heart problem. He said he did not plan to address the media after arriving in Kazakhstan.

Rakhat Aliev has lived in self-imposed exile in Vienna since 2007. Austrian officials have refused to extradite him to Kazakhstan, saying that he is unlikely to receive a fair trial there.

Aliev was tried in Kazakhstan in absentia last year and found guilty of kidnapping, extortion, and treason and given a 40-year jail sentence. Rakhat Aliev told RFE/RL earlier that Kazakh authorities are holding his mother hostage because of his decision to oppose his former father-in-law, President Nursultan Nazarbaev.