24 August 2005 (RFE/RL) -- Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbaev said today he will seek a new, seven-year term in an election scheduled for December.
Nazarbaev said during a live phone-in session on state television that, if Kazakhs give him their support, he will complete his "work for the benefit of the people."
Nazarbaev, 65, has ruled the oil-rich Central Asian nation for 16 years, since before it became independent in the 1991 Soviet collapse. He had indicated earlier that he would run for a new term.
Nazarbaev is credited for post-Soviet economic progress in the sprawling nation of 15 million, but is criticized for authoritarian policies.
(AP/Reuters)See also: Kazakhstan: Can Opposition Compete In Presidential Elections?